Even though he has recorded close to 50 albums for ECM Records since 1971, Keith Jarrett says his latest, "Radiance," a two-CD masterwork of live solo piano improvisations, is special. "This is my position paper on what I feel I can do on a keyboard," says Jarrett, who turns 60 on May 8. "This captures me compositionally more than any of my other recordings. That this was recorded live in front of an audience makes it all the better."
In 2002, Jarrett was invited to perform in Japan to commemorate his 150th concert there. A mini two-show tour was set up for Osaka and Tokyo. He chose to play solo, showcasing his ability to create music on the spot, without a set list or even the seed of a compositional idea before the performance.
While Jarrett is recognized for his expansive solo excursions (documented on such classic albums as 1975's "The Koln Concert" and 1997's "La Scala," his last solo improvised recording), for these performances he reimagined his time alone onstage, taking his extemporaneous art to a new level of beauty and energy.
The album's 17 sections (parts 1-13 recorded in Osaka, 14-17 in Tokyo) range from 14-minute journeys to one-minute vignettes -- all, as he calls them, "transformative moments."