I found great solo piano recording of Rick Wakeman, the name of the CD is "Country Airs".
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While in the local audio store the owner was playing a BIS CD of Lera Auerbach (BIS-CD-1242) which really impressed me (for what that's worth) with the naturalness of the piano. There's also some wonderful violin virtuosity demonstrated too. I haven't bought the CD yet but I think it will be a candidate for reference status. I believe there was a review of the CD in the November (?) issue of Sterophile.
I agree that the piano is the hardest instrument to get right, and I'm not quite sure why. Classical recordings tend to move between two extremes: up close and personal with the mics (Glenn Gould's Sony recordings, where you could hear not only his humming but his chair--made by his father--squeaking) or ECM's Till Felner recordings, which gives you the sound of a piano in a concert hall, with the mics--apparently--at some considerable distance from the piano. Neither seems entirely satisfactory. Another problem: often one notices distortion (in the recording, I assume) when the piano gets into the upper register; that's a problem--surprisingly--with the Fellner recordings on ECM.
But speaking of ECM, the best piano sound I know of is on ECM's recording of Bobo Stensen, whether he's playing with his trio or with Charles Lloyd. Clear, undistorted highs, and those deep solid, bass notes in which you can actually hear the fact that piano strings in the lower registers are not only metal, but wound. Do you know what I mean about that sound? When you hear a grand piano live, you hear that; but very few recordings pick it up.