Roland TempelaarNew York ChapterSelf-Released

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With his debut record entitled New York Chapter, jazz pianist and scientist Roland Tempelaar recounts the years he spent living in the Big Apple. While he has mastered the art of balancing science and music for much of his life, this especially held true throughout his New York years, during which he spent the days researching quantum chemistry at Columbia University while playing at the downtown clubs at nighttime.

Hailing from the Netherlands, Roland started his classical piano training at age 6 before discovering jazz in his teens. By the time he obtained his science doctorate with distinction cum laude at the University of Groningen, he had already immersed himself in the flourishing local jazz scene. The offer to come to New York presented him with the ultimate challenge of thriving at the highest academic and musical levels.

New York Chapter narrates the experiences coming forth from this challenge, decorated with the rich tradition of jazz culture. Ever since his arrival, Roland built his musical network entirely through attending nightly jam sessions, where his unique approach to melody and comping was soon taken note of. To Roland, jazz is very much a means of communication, and this principle has been the driving force behind the musical alliances he has developed over the years. Bassist Myles Sloniker soon became a regular companion at performances, and can be heard at this record alongside drummer extraordinaire Pete Van Nostrand.

Also keeping with the jazz tradition, the renditions captured on New York Chapter have emerged organically at the bandstand. The track list features a collection of standards that grew to become the staples of Roland’s performance repertoire, including a moody rendition of “Beatrice” built around modal vamps, an atmospheric version of “Slow Hot Wind”, and a light-footed take on “My Little Suede Shoes”. Complementing these standards are two original compositions, the waltz “Roland’s Song” and the blues “To Chicago”. Similar to the album as a whole, these compositions draw inspiration from the City that has generously and ruthlessly hosted Roland during these years.

Track listing:

  1. Beatrice (Rivers)
  2. Slow hot wind (Mancini)
  3. Tangerine (Schertzinger)
  4. Roland’s song
  5. Tenderly (Gross)
  6. Invitation (Kaper)
  7. Like someone in love (Van Heusen)
  8. My little suede shoes (Parker)
  9. To Chicago
  10. Misty (Garner)

Roland Tempelaar (piano), Myles Sloniker (bass), & Pete Van Nostrand (drums)

Roland Tempelaar (piano), Myles Sloniker (bass), & Pete Van Nostrand (drums)