The man with the most Google friendly name in the world, a name that sounds like a river that runs through East-European towns and forests, Brad Mehldau; it’s his birthday today. He’s 42. I bought my first Mehdau trio CD back in ’98. I had been high on Bill Evans’ soft, impressionistic, introvert piano style for many years and suddenly I was hit with this totally different sound that  grabbed my heart and squeezed hard. That dry, under-pedaled style, direct with no pretense, dead slow and murder fast, odd-time festival if there ever was one, more influenced from the romantic masters than impressionism. And his fellow trioists, man! Do they ooze with character! I’m not the right guy to try to describe this music with words. Why should I when I can just give you a taste. This is from this first CD I purchased with the Brad Mehldau Trio: The Art of the Trio v.2, live at Village Vanguard. It’s still my favorite jazz trio disc. The song is Cole Porter’s classic: It’s Alright With Me. Yes sir, it is! No video, just heavenly jazz. Close your eyes and get lost in the moment. Happy Birthday Brad.