Written by from NPR
John Pizzarelli makes his fifth visit to Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Keith Albee Theater in Huntington, W.Va. Pizzarelli took up guitar at age 6, following in the footsteps of his father, jazz legend Bucky Pizzarelli. Like his father before him, John Pizzarelli is one of the few masters of the seven-string guitar: “Growing up, seven-string guitars were free in my house,” he says, “so that’s what I learned to play.”
Pizzarelli is a fine singer, as well: His high, crooning vocals recall those of jazz legend Chet Baker. A master of interpreting swing-era standards and beyond, Pizzarelli has appeared in Dream, a 1997 Broadway production of Johnny Mercer songs; opened for Frank Sinatra on tour; and released an album of Beatles covers. (That eventually led to his recruitment to play guitar on Paul McCartney’s album of standards, Kisses On The Bottom.) Pizzarelli appears here with Konrad Paszkudzki on piano, drummer Kevin Kanner and brother Martin Pizzarelli on upright bass.