Apart from the first 11 tracks on CD1 Fresh Sound have issued all this material before, the Pour House material being issued over 30 years after its recording and the Elmo Hope collection being produced under the auspices of label owner Jordi Pujol, in an attempt to bring the relatively obscure Moer to a wider audience.
The pianist was lost to the jazz scene for many years, spending much time in the television studios, writing for many string-based ensembles and acting as arranger/musical director for singers like Eartha Kitt, Frankie Avalon and Rosemary Clooney. All this after a couple of successful years in the Paul Horn Quintet, having also worked with Stan Getz, Benny Golson, Zoot Sims and Maynard Ferguson.
There is no doubt he was an accomplished pianist, if not overly distinctive and he could certainly swing, in the company of some very good players as displayed on these trio sides, which include a number of his own compositions.
The Elmo Hope selections are nicely presented, bringing to life the attractive properties his fellow pianist’s tunes had to offer with Heard and Marable perfect partners in the project. This is a case of one neglected artist showcasing the oeuvre of another equally overlooked musician.
If Moer had not deserted jazz for virtually three decades we would almost certainly be viewing his career in a different light but inevitably he will always be viewed as one of the troops rather than of the officer class.
CD1: (1) Neat Foot; [The Contemporary Jazz Classics of the Paul Moer Trio] (2) Short Politician; More or Les; I Love Paris; To a Folk Song; Mary Ann; Azure Blues; Cute; We’ll Be Together Again; Our Waltz; Untitled Melody; [ Paul Moer Trio – Live at the Pour House] (3) Bob Keene Introduces the Trio; Things Ain’t What They Used to Be; Shop – A – Doddle – Op; Stay Even; Sunset; Tall Polynesian; Jazz por Favor; Bottled in Bond; Way Up (73.14)
CD2: (3) Mean Time; All the Things You Are; Wave Dance; Cute; Closing Announcements by Paul Moer; [Paul Moer Trio Plays the Music Of Elmo Hope] (4) Later for You; Something for Kenny; Moe’s Bluff; Maybe So; Happy Hour; Minor Bertha; Carving the Rock; Low Tide; One Second Please; So Nice; Boa (74.21)
Moer (p) with:
(1) Paul Chambers (b); Philly Joe Jones (d). Hollywood, 23 January 1957.
(2) Jimmy Bond (b); Frank Butler (d). Hollywood, November 1960.
(3) Bond (b); Maurice Miller (d). San Clemente, California, 29 April 1961.
(4) John Heard (b); Lawrence Marable (d). Hollywood, 19 & 20 1991.
Fresh Sound FSR-CD 972