October 10, 2017

Happy Birthday(s)

October 10th marks the birthdays of two prominent jazz pianists. Thelonious Sphere Monk was born 100 years ago today in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. His piano style was unique among his peers and his original compositions have become celebrated standards, studied and performed by all aspiring jazz musicians. Thelonious appears on any jazz historian’s list of the top ten most influential jazz artists.

Among his many admirers is pianist Junior Mance, born in 1928 on this same day, October 10th, in Evanston, Illinois. Junior enjoyed a successful career as an accompanist to jazz singers, including Joe Williams and Dinah Washington, and as a leader of his own piano trio. He often included Monk compositions in his recordings and a perfect way to acknowledge this October 10th is provided at this link.

Just this week the Fillius Jazz Archive published two videos with Junior Mance. You can view Part 1 here, and Part 2 here.

Happy viewing.

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