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Discussion in 'Music to Your Ears' started by EllroyJames, May 11, 2021.
Thanks for sharing - good stuff!
I confess, while I am quite familiar with the name, I won none of Monk's stuff.
I love watching Monk play. Did anyone ever hit the keyboard harder?
This is from an album that I save for the ****tiest of days. It is so good that I can't risk wearing it out.
I like the album cover. I like stupid pictures of adults in wagons and shopping carts and stuff like that.
Thanks for posting. Great way to start my day and I really love those old Riverside, Blue Note and Prestige recordings. He’s the reason there is still a piano at my Moms house. No, I never learned to properly play that thing but my little sister did and went on to a great career as a music teacher. Come to think of it I never learned to properly play the guitar either but my attempts led me to rename the Locrian mode the Monk mode cause I would always start hearing fragments of his melodies when playing it. One of the greats and always a favorite of mine.
Nice. Misterioso is still one of my favorite albums... so I need to branch out and listen to this one! Coltrane on sax here.
The catchiness of Thelonious Monk's angular grooves is what caught my teenage ears so long ago. Thanks for the reminder!
Monk's Round Midnight is one my favorite jazz tunes. This is a nice version by Grant Green:
What 'harmonically AND rhythmically sophisticated' (?) genius.
I can't even process what I hear when listening to Monk, other than I love it, and it makes me smile.
Simple, almost nursery rhyme melodies that have these angular chords supporting them, or blues progressions that he turns upside down- playing a melody where he climbs up a half step on each line? (edit- you can hear this on " Ruby My Dear" which I posted after..)
The Escher of music
It was the Blue Note Genius of Modern Music comps that got me into Monk, and consequently, jazz, back in the 90s, when my ears couldn't handle rock n roll anymore. Amazing composer and player. No one like him before or since.
There are two live Monk albums from the same night - Live at the Five Spot and Misterioso - that have become two of my very favorite jazz albums. Hearing this particular band try to play these crazy tunes just makes me smile every time. Also, I've seen a lot of live jazz, and I listen to this and dream about sitting in the crowd watching these guys.
When I played this song for my elderly and retired jazz pianist father, he laughed a lot (in an appreciative way) at the weird stuff Monk plays and how he times it.
How can you not like a guy whose middle name is Sphere?
And the straight fingers unbent, the man/genius was unorthodox in every conceivable way.
In the early 2000's I got the Monk and John Coltrane Live at Carnegie Hall recording...
( this time period, late!, is when I finally discovered Jazz, and went crazy buying CD's for about 2 years- as I had a lot of catching up to do!)
...and I loved "Ruby, My Dear"
The CD came with a poster that my wife ( a pro picture framer) framed and we had in our living room.
We used to cover a few Monk Tune back in the day. Charlie Rouse is still one of my favorite sax players.
Right before Covid hit I had planned a trip to NYC with a special visit to see the house where Monk lived out his final years (with the Baroness) over in NJ, in Weehawken.
If anyone wants to read a STELLAR biography of Monk, Robin D. G. Kelley's book Thelonious Monk The Life and Times of an American Original is one of the best musician/composer biographies I've ever read.
He said it was to prove he was no square. I thought he made up the name but he was named after his maternal grandfather, Sphere Batts, according to Wikipedia.
I was lucky to inherit my dad's copy. Love Monk - Underground is a favorite.