Jazz & Blues Music

Thelonious Monk – Don’t blame me

Along with Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk (1917-1982) was a vital member of the jazz revolution which took place in the early 1940s.

Monk’s unique piano style and his talent as a composer made him a leader in the development of modern jazz. Find his sheet music transcriptions in our Library.

He’s not just another genius pianist. We are proud to have many of Thelonious monk’s piano sheet music transcriptions and melodies in our Library.

When Thelonious Monk began performing his music in the early 1940s, only a small circle of New York’s brightest jazz musicians could appreciate its uniqueness. His melodies were angular, his harmonies full of jarring clusters, and he used both notes and the absence of notes in unexpected ways. He flattened his fingers when he played the piano and used his elbows from time to time to get the sound he wanted.

Critics and peers took these as signs of incompetency, giving his music “puzzled dismissal as deliberately eccentric,” as Jazz Journal noted. “To them, Monk apparently had ideas, but it took fleshier players like pianist Bud Powell to execute them properly.” The debate over his talent and skill continued as the years passed, but Monk eventually found himself with a strong following. By the time of his death in 1982 he was widely acknowledged as a founding father of modern jazz.

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Aspects of his compositions that once were ridiculed are now analyzed at colleges and universities throughout the country. Amateur and professional pianists continue to cite him as a major influence in their styles. Many of his works, which number over 60, are jazz classics. “Round Midnight” is considered “one of the most beautiful short pieces of music written in twentieth-century America,” as record producer Orrin Keepnews noted in Keyboard Magazine.

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Though his career was beset by personal and societal obstacles, Monk always believed in his music. He never spoke to his audiences end rarely granted interviews, preferring to let his music speak for itself. Aside from his wife and two children, his music was his life. “So absorbed was he in jazz,” commented Keyboard, “that he would walk the New York streets for hours or stand still on a corner near his apartment on West 63rd Street, staring into his private landscape and running new songs and sounds through his mind. As he himself succinctly explained it, ‘I just walk and dig.”

Thelonious Monk free sheet music & scores pdf

Because Monk’s music was beyond the grasp of most listeners, the media tended to look for peripheral details to write about. They had plenty of material; as the New York Post wrote, Monk was “one of jazz’s great eccentrics.” During concerts and recording sessions he would rise from his bench every so often and lunge into a dance, emphasizing the rhythm he wanted from his bandmembers with his 200-pound frame. With his strange hats, bamboo-framed sunglasses, and goatee, he became an obvious subject for Sunday supplement caricatures. There was also the way he talked: He and his peers—saxophonist Charlie Parker, trumpeters Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis, drummer Max Roach, and tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins—were known for popularizing such expressions a “groovy,” “you dig, man,” and “cool, baby.” But most Americans first heard of him in the early 1950s when he and a couple of friends were arrested for allegedly possessing drugs—for Monk, one among other instances of legal harassment that would create severe obstacles in his work.

Surprisingly, there are no biographies in book form on Monk. There is, however, the excellent 1989 film documentary, Straight, No Chaser (Warner Bros.), which combines footage shot in the late 1960s with more recent interviews with his son, Thelonious Monk, Jr., tenor saxophonist Charlie Rouse, and others. According to a New York Times interview, the film features “some of the most valuable jazz ever shot. Closeups of Monk’s hands on the keyboard reveal a technique that was unusually tense, spiky and aggressive. Other scenes show him explaining his compositions and chord structures, giving instructions in terse, barely intelligible growls that even his fellow musicians found difficult to interpret.” The film also provides glimpses into the emotional turbulences in his personal life. He was “acutely sensitive and moody and perhaps a manic-depressive,” according to the same review. “Illness eventually made it impossible for him to perform.”

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Teaches Self to Read Music

Thelonious Sphere Monk was born October 10, 1917, in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. The first musical sounds he heard were from a player piano that his family owned. At the age of five or six he began picking out melodies on the piano and taught himself to read music by looking over his sister’s shoulder as she took lessons. About a year later the family moved to the San Juan Hill section of New York City, near the Hudson River. His father became ill soon afterward and returned to the South, leaving Thelonious’s mother, Barbara, to raise him and his brother and sister by herself. Mrs. Monk did all she could to encourage her young son’s interest in music. Though the family budget was tight, she managed to buy a baby grand Steinway piano, and when Thelonious turned 11 she began paying for his weekly piano lessons. Even at that young age it was clear that the instrument was part of his destiny. “If anybody sat down and played the piano,” he recalled in Crescendo International, “I would just stand there and watch ’em all the time.”

As a boy Thelonious received rigorous training in the gospel music style, accompanying the Baptist choir in which his mother sang and playing piano and organ during church services. At the same time he was becoming initiated into the world of jazz; near his home were several jazz clubs as well as the home of the great Harlem stride pianist James P. Johnson, from whom Thelonious picked up a great deal. By the age of 13 he was playing in a local bar and grill with a trio. A year later he began playing at “rent” parties (parties thrown to raise money for rent), which meant holding his own among the pianists who would each play in marathon displays of virtuosity. He gained further distinction at the Apollo Theater’s famous weekly amateur music contests, which he won so many times that he was eventually banned from the event. At 16 he left school to travel with an evangelical faith healer and preacher for a year-long tour that indoctrinated him into the subtleties of rhythm and blues accompaniment.

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“I was about nineteen to twenty, I guess, when I started to hear my music in my mind,” Monk told Crescendo International. “So I had to compose music in order to express the type of ideas that I had. Because the music wasn’t on the scene. It had to be composed…. All the musicians that were thinking liked my music—and wanted to learn how to play the different songs that we were playing. And the most talented ones used to be on the scene. Like Charlie Parker and Dizzy. They were about the fastest-thinking musicians. And so they would come and play all the time, and I would teach ’em the songs, you know, and the chords. They didn’t just hear it. I had to tell ’em what it was…. They got themselves together by playing a lot with me…. I wasn’t trying to create something that would be hard to play. I just composed music that fit with how I was thinking…. I didn’t want to play the way I’d heard music played all my life. I got tired of hearing that. I wanted to hear something else, something better.”

As the 1940s progressed and bebop became more and more the rage, Monk’s career declined. “By 1948,” Keyboard noted, “he was only doing occasional nights at Birdland, and days were often spent sitting in his room, writing tunes, gazing silently at the television, or staring for long hours at a pictured Billie Holiday taped to his ceiling…. Nellie, his wife, helped keep food on the table with outside work during his periods of moody immobility.” In 1951 he was arrested with pianist Bud Powell on an extremely questionable charge of narcotics possession. Not only was he confined for 60 days in prison but the New York State Liquor Authority rescinded his cabaret card, without which he could not get hired for local club dates. For the next several years he survived only with the help of his good friend and patron the Baroness de Koenigswarter.

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By the mid-1950s, though, his fortune took a turn for the better. In 1954 he gave a series of concerts in Paris and cut his first solo album, Pure Monk (now out of print). A year later he began recording for the Riverside label. His following grew, and as Keyboard reported, his mystique grew as well. “Program notes for the Berkshire Music Barn Jazz Concert in 1955 read, ‘Monk is the Greta Garbo of jazz, and his appearance at any piano is regarded as a major event by serious followers of jazz.”‘ In 1957 he opened an engagement at New York’s Five Spot, leading a powerful quartet with a jazz newcomer named John Coltrane on saxophone. The gig, which lasted eight months, was pivotal for Monk. “Monk found himself at the center of a cult,” wrote Keyboard. “Audiences lined up to see his unpredictable performances, his quirky, quietly ecstatic dances during horn solos, his wanderings through the room.” Several masterful albums he recorded for Riverside in the late 1950s—Brilliant Corners, Thelonious Himself, and Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane—increased his notoriety, rendering him “the most acclaimed and controversial jazz improviser of the late 1950s almost overnight.” It didn’t hurt that both Coltrane and Sonny Rollins were acknowledging him as their guru. “With men as highly regarded as those acknowledging his mastery,” Keepnews commented in Keyboard, “the rest of the jazz world was quick to follow…. I could not [without] both satisfaction and amusement [describe] the quick change in his down beat record reviews from lukewarm or less to their top 5-star rating.”

The strange behavior that Monk displayed in public sometimes got him into trouble. In 1958 he was arrested, undeservedly, for disturbing the peace, and his cabaret license was revoked a second time. Forced to take out-of-town gigs, he was separated from his two main sources of stability—New York City and his wife Nellie—and his eccentricities thus intensified. During one episode in 1959 in Boston, state police picked him up and brought him to the Grafton State Hospital, where he was held for a week. “From that point on,” Keyboard wrote, “when asked about his eccentricities, Monk would answer, ‘I can’t be crazy, because they had me in one of these places and let me go.” Around 1960 his cabaret club card was restored and he returned to playing the New York clubs. Now when he played a gig his wife accompanied him; when she couldn’t make it, he telephoned her during breaks.

Toward the end of the 1950s Monk began to receive the prestige he had for so long deserved. His late 1950s recordings on Riverside had done so well that in 1962 he was offered a contract from Columbia. As a performer he was equally successful, commanding, in 1960, $2,000 for week-long engagements with his band and $1,000 for single performances. His December 1963 concert at New York’s Philharmonic Hall, a big-band presentation of originals, was for him a personal landmark. As Keyboard observed, “the Philharmonic Hall was special: it was within walking distance of his apartment, a part of the neighborhood he had criss-crossed on his long meditative strolls. After years of hassles with local clubs and unsympathetic critics, Monk had finally made it close to home.” In 1964 he appeared on the cover of Time magazine—an extremely rare honor for jazz artist.

Looking back on his career, Monk told Crescendo International, “As for the hard times I’ve had—I’ve never been jealous of any musician, or anything. Musicians and other people have told lies on me, sure, and it has kept me from jobs for awhile…. But it didn’t bother me. I kept on making it—recording and doing what I’m doing, and thinking. While they were talking I was thinking music and still trying to play. And I never starved. I always could make it…. What turned the tide in my favour? The sons took over. A lot of the fathers kicked off, went out of business, or retired. And their sons are in power now, that like different music and take better chances. In other words, it’s younger people running things…. I take it as it comes—as long as I can make a living, take care of my family and everybody can be comfortable. And if I can do what I want when I feel like doing it—which generally means financially—then everything is all right. If you want to eat, you can buy some food. If you want a suit, you can buy one. If you don’t want to walk, you can ride in a cab, or buy a car. That’s all you need to do. Sleep when you want, get up when you want— be your own boss…. I’ve never wished for anybody else’s job. I enjoy what I do and I’m myself all the time. And I’ll continue to be me.”

LIVE Music Concerts Jazz & Blues Music

Amazing: Erroll Garner live 63′ & 64′

Erroll Garner live sheet music download from our LIBRARY.

Erroll Garner live 63' & 64' free sheet music pdf

Erroll Louis Garner (June 15, 1921 – January 2, 1977) was an American jazz pianist and composer known for his swing playing and ballads. His best-known composition, the ballad “Misty”, has become a jazz standard. Scott Yanow of Allmusic calls him “one of the most distinctive of all pianists” and a “brilliant virtuoso.” He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6363 Hollywood Blvd. His live album, Concert by the Sea, first released in 1955, sold over a million copies by 1958 and Scott Yanow’s opinion is: “this is the album that made such a strong impression that Garner was considered immortal from then on.”

Garner was born with his twin brother Ernest in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on June 15, 1921, the youngest of six children in an African-American family. He attended George Westinghouse High School (as did fellow pianists Billy Strayhorn and Ahmad Jamal). Interviews with his family and music teachers (and with other musicians), plus a detailed family tree are given in Erroll Garner: The Most Happy Piano by James M Doran.

Garner began playing piano at the age of three. His elder siblings were taught piano by Miss Bowman. From an early age, Erroll would sit down and play anything she had demonstrated, just like Miss Bowman, his eldest sister Martha said.[ Garner was self-taught and remained an “ear player” all his life, never learning to read music. At age seven, he began appearing on the radio station KDKA in Pittsburgh with a group called the Candy Kids. By age 11, he was playing on the Allegheny riverboats. In 1937 he joined local saxophonist Leroy Brown.

free sheet music & scores pdf Erroll Garner live 63' & 64'

He played locally in the shadow of his older pianist brother Linton Garner.

Garner moved to New York City in 1944. He briefly worked with the bassist Slam Stewart, and though not a bebop musician per se, in 1947 played with Charlie Parker on the “Cool Blues” session. Although his admission to the Pittsburgh music union was initially refused because of his inability to read music, it relented in 1956 and made him an honorary member.[3] Garner is credited with a superb musical memory. After attending a concert by the Russian classical pianist Emil Gilels, Garner returned to his apartment and was able to play a large portion of the performed music by recall.

Garner made many tours both at home and abroad, and regularly recorded. He was, reportedly, The Tonight Show host Johnny Carson’s favorite jazz musician, appearing on Carson’s show many times over the years.

Garner died of cardiac arrest related to emphysema on January 2, 1977. He is buried in Pittsburgh’s Homewood Cemetery

free sheet music & scores pdf Erroll Garner live 63' & 64'

Short in stature (5 feet 2 inches [157 cm]), Garner performed sitting on multiple telephone directories. He was also known for his vocalizations while playing, which can be heard on many of his recordings. He helped to bridge the gap for jazz musicians between nightclubs and the concert hall.

Called “one of the most distinctive of all pianists” by Scott Yanow, Garner showed that a “creative jazz musician can be very popular without watering down his music” or changing his personal style. He has been described as a “brilliant virtuoso who sounded unlike anyone else”, using an “orchestral approach straight from the swing era but … open to the innovations of bop.” His distinctive style could swing like no other, but some of his best recordings are ballads, such as his best-known composition, “Misty”, which rapidly became a jazz standard – and was featured in Clint Eastwood’s film Play Misty for Me (1971).

Garner may have been inspired by the example of Earl Hines, a fellow Pittsburgh resident but 18 years his senior, and there were resemblances in their elastic approach to timing and use of right-hand octaves. Garner’s early recordings also display the influence of the stride piano style of James P. Johnson and Fats Waller. He developed a signature style that involved his right hand playing behind the beat while his left strummed a steady rhythm and punctuation, creating insouciance and tension. The independence of his hands also was evidenced by his masterful use of three-against-four and more complicated cross-rhythms between the hands. Garner would also improvise whimsical introductions—often in stark contrast to the rest of the tune—that left listeners in suspense as to what the piece would be. His melodic improvisations generally stayed close to the theme while employing novel chord voicings.

Pianist Ross Tompkins described Garner’s distinctiveness as due to ‘happiness’.

Garner’s first recordings were made in late 1944 at the apartment of Timme Rosenkrantz; these were subsequently issued as the five-volume Overture to Dawn series on Blue Note Records. His recording career advanced in the late 1940s when several sides such as “Fine and Dandy”, “Skylark” and “Summertime” were cut. His 1955 live album Concert by the Sea was a best-selling jazz album in its day and features Eddie Calhoun on bass and Denzil Best on drums. This recording of a performance at the Sunset Center, a former school in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, was made using relatively primitive sound equipment, but for George Avakian the decision to release the recording was easy.

In 1954 Garner composed “Misty”, first recording it in 1955 for the album Contrasts. Lyrics were later added by Johnny Burke. “Misty” rapidly became popular, both as a jazz standard and as the signature song of Johnny Mathis. It was also recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Sarah Vaughan, Ray Stevens and Aretha Franklin. Clint Eastwood used it as the basis for his thriller Play Misty For Me.

One World Concert was recorded at the 1962 Seattle World Fair (and in 1959 stretching out in the studios) and features Eddie Calhoun on bass and Kelly Martin on drums. Other works include 1951’s Long Ago and Far Away, 1953’s Erroll Garner at the Piano with Wyatt Ruther and Fats Heard, 1957’s The Most Happy Piano, 1970’s Feeling Is Believing and 1974’s Magician, on which Garner performs a number of classic standards. Often the trio was expanded to add Latin percussion, usually a conga.

In 1964, Garner appeared in the UK on the music series Jazz 625 broadcast on the BBC’s new second channel. The programme was hosted by Steve Race, who introduced Garner’s trio with Eddie Calhoun on bass and Kelly Martin on drums.

Because Garner could not write down his musical ideas, he used to record them on tape, to be later transcribed by others.

Jazz & Blues Music

Dave Brubeck Trio feat. Gerry Mulligan & Paul Desmond – Berliner Jazztage 1972

● Tracklist:

00:00:23 – Blues for Newport 00:14:14 – All The Things You Are 00:25:21 – For All We Know 00:29:27 – Line for Lyons 00:35:17 – Blessed Are The Poor (The Sermon on The Mount) 00:40:57 – Mexican Jumping Bean 00:47:31 – Sign Off 00:58:44 – Someday My Prince Will Come 01:07:18 – These Foolish Things (That Reminds Me Of You) 01:11:46 – Take The “A” Train

● Personnel:

Dave Brubeck – piano Paul Desmond – alto sax Gerry Mulligan – baritone sax Jack Six – bass Alan Dawson – drums ● Dave Brubeck Trio feat. Gerry Mulligan & Paul Desmond – Berliner Jazztage 1972 Recorded live on November 4th, 1972 at Berliner Philharmonie, Berlin, Germany.

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Jazz & Blues Music

Chick Corea Trio: Vigilette (LIVE)

Chick Corea Trio: Vigilette recorded live by Antonio Oliart at Scullers Jazz Club in Boston, MA, on Sept. 19, 2018.


00:00:10 – “On Green Dolphin Street” 00:11:06 – “Rhumba Flamenco” 00:24:55 – “Tempus Fugit” 00:46:51 – “Zyryab” 01:00:35 – “Fingerprints”


Chick Corea (Piano) Carlitos Del Puerto (Bass) Marcus Gilmore (Drums)

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Pianist Chick Corea has lived many lives as a musician, from post-bop wunderkind to free-jazz maverick to fusion explorer to chamber-jazz eminence. Jazz Night caught up with Corea during a recent gig at Scullers in Boston while he was on tour with a new trio he calls Vigilette. Listen to the accompanying radio episode here:…

Pianist Chick Corea has lived many lives as a musician, from post-bop wunderkind to free-jazz maverick to fusion explorer to chamber-jazz eminence. That imprecise tally leaves out a lot in an expansive career — but, more to the point, it creates the false impression that Corea compartmentalizes his musical output, when the truth suggests something far more holistic. Jazz Night in America caught up with Corea during a recent gig at Scullers in Boston — just across the river from Chelsea, Mass., where he was born and raised. He was on tour with a new trio he calls Vigilette, with Carlitos Del Puerto on bass and Marcus Gilmore on drums. The set list combined songbook standards like “On Green Dolphin Street” with originals like “Rhumba Flamenco,” each number delivered with Corea’s brand of articulate flair. A few days after the performance, Corea sat down with Christian McBride — our host, and his longtime musical collaborator — for a collegial and far-ranging conversation.

They discuss the first time Corea saw Miles Davis, an experience that changed his life, and one he recalls with absolute detail. Corea also reflects on the role of an artist: “We have a mission to go out there and be an antidote to war, and all of the dark side of what happens on Planet Earth,” he says. “We’re the ones that go in and remind people about their creativity.”

This performance was recorded live by Antonio Oliart at Scullers Jazz Club in Boston, MA, on Sept. 19, 2018. SET LIST 00:00:10 – “On Green Dolphin Street” 00:11:06 – “Rhumba Flamenco” 00:24:55 – “Tempus Fugit” 00:46:51 – “Zyryab” 01:00:35 – “Fingerprints”

Jazz & Blues Music

Waltz For Debby – Oscar Peterson ( Piano Moods ) with sheet music

Waltz For Debby – Oscar Peterson ( Piano Moods ) with sheet music download.

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Jazz & Rock Play Along

Herbie Hancock “Jessica” Jazz Play Along with sheet music

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Herbie Hancock “Jessica” Jazz Play Along with sheet music

Jazz play along jazz sheet music transcription

Herbie Hancock

Herbie Hancock will always be one of the most revered and controversial figures in jazz, just as his employer/mentor Miles Davis was when he was alive. Unlike Miles, who pressed ahead relentlessly and never looked back until near the very end, Hancock has cut a zigzagging forward path, shuttling between almost every development in electronic and acoustic jazz and R&B over the last third of the 20th century and into the 21st.

Though grounded in Bill Evans and able to absorb blues, funk, gospel, and even modern classical influences, Hancock‘s piano and keyboard voices are entirely his own, with their own urbane harmonic and complex, earthy rhythmic signatures — and young pianists cop his licks constantly.

Having studied engineering and professing to love gadgets and buttons, Hancock was perfectly suited for the electronic age; he was one of the earliest champions of the Rhodes electric piano and Hohner clavinet, and would field an ever-growing collection of synthesizers and computers on his electric dates.

Yet his love for the grand piano never waned, and despite his peripatetic activities all over the musical map, his piano style continued to evolve into tougher, ever more complex forms. He is as much at home trading riffs with a smoking funk band as he is communing with a world-class post-bop rhythm section — and that drives purists on both sides of the fence up the wall.

Having taken up the piano at age seven, Hancock quickly became known as a prodigy, soloing in the first movement of a Mozart piano concerto with the Chicago Symphony at the age of 11.

After studies at Grinnell College, Hancock was invited by Donald Byrd in 1961 to join his group in New York City, and before long, Blue Note offered him a solo contract. His debut album, Takin’ Off, took off after Mongo Santamaria covered one of the album’s songs, “Watermelon Man.” In May 1963, Miles Davis asked him to join his band in time for the Seven Steps to Heaven sessions, and he remained with him for five years, greatly influencing Davis‘ evolving direction, loosening up his own style, and, upon Davis‘ suggestion, converting to the Rhodes electric piano.

During that time, Hancock‘s solo career blossomed on Blue Note, as he poured forth increasingly sophisticated compositions like “Maiden Voyage,” “Cantaloupe Island,” “Goodbye to Childhood,” and the exquisite “Speak Like a Child.” He also played on many East Coast recording sessions for producer Creed Taylor and provided a groundbreaking score to Michelangelo Antonioni‘s film Blow-Up, which gradually led to further movie assignments.

Having left the Davis band in 1968, Hancock recorded an elegant funk album, Fat Albert Rotunda, and in 1969 formed a sextet that evolved into one of the most exciting, forward-looking jazz-rock groups of the era. By then deeply immersed in electronics, Hancock added Patrick Gleeson‘s synthesizer to his Echoplexed, fuzz-wah-pedaled electric piano and clavinet, and the recordings became spacier and more complex rhythmically and structurally, creating their own corner of the avant-garde. By 1970, all of the musicians used both English and African names (Herbie‘s was Mwandishi).

Alas, Hancock had to break up the band in 1973 when it ran out of money, and having studied Buddhism, he concluded that his ultimate goal should be to make his audiences happy.

The next step, then, was a terrific funk group whose first album, Head Hunters, with its Sly Stone-influenced hit single, “Chameleon,” became the biggest-selling jazz LP up to that time. Handling all of the synthesizers himself, Hancock‘s heavily rhythmic comping often became part of the rhythm section, leavened by interludes of the old urbane harmonies. Hancock recorded several electric albums of mostly superior quality in the ’70s, followed by a turn into disco around the decade’s end.

In the meantime, Hancock refused to abandon acoustic jazz. After a one-shot reunion of the 1965 Miles Davis Quintet (Hancock, Ron Carter, Tony Williams, Wayne Shorter, and Freddie Hubbard sitting in for Miles) at New York’s 1976 Newport Jazz Festival, they went on tour the following year as V.S.O.P.

The near-universal acclaim of the reunions proved that Hancock was still a whale of a pianist; that Miles‘ loose mid-’60s post-bop direction was far from spent; and that the time for a neo-traditional revival was near, finally bearing fruit in the ’80s with Wynton Marsalis and his ilk. V.S.O.P. continued to hold sporadic reunions through 1992, though the death of the indispensable Williams in 1997 cast much doubt as to whether these gatherings would continue.

Hancock continued his chameleonic ways in the ’80s: scoring an MTV hit in 1983 with the scratch-driven, electro-influenced single “Rockit” (accompanied by a striking video); launching an exciting partnership with Gambian kora virtuoso Foday Musa Suso that culminated in the swinging 1986 live album Jazz Africa; doing film scores, and playing festivals and tours with the Marsalis brothers, George Benson, Michael Brecker, and many others. After his 1988 techno-pop album, Perfect Machine, Hancock left Columbia (his label since 1973), signed a contract with Qwest that came to virtually nothing (save for A Tribute to Miles in 1992), and finally made a deal with Polygram in 1994 to record jazz for Verve and release pop albums on Mercury.

Well into a youthful middle age, Hancock‘s curiosity, versatility, and capacity for growth showed no signs of fading, and in 1998 he issued Gershwin’s World. His curiosity with the fusion of electronic music and jazz continued with 2001’s Future 2 Future, but he also continued to explore the future of straight-ahead contemporary jazz with 2005’s Possibilities. An intriguing album of jazz treatments of Joni Mitchell compositions called River: The Joni Letters was released in 2007 and won a Grammy for Album of the Year in 2008.

Two years later, Hancock released his The Imagine Project album, recorded in seven countries with a host of collaborators including Dave Matthews, Juanes, and Wayne Shorter. He was also named Creative Chair for the New Los Angeles Philharmonic. In 2013, he was the recipient of a Kennedy Center Honors award, acknowledged for his contribution to American performing arts. An expanded tenth anniversary edition of River: The Joni Letters was released in 2017, and he continues to perform regularly.

Herbie Hancock’s discography

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Jazz & Blues Music

Bill Evans plays “Django”

Bill Evans plays “Django” (with sheet music to download)

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“Django” is a 1954 jazz standard written by John Lewis as a tribute to the Belgian-born jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. It was a signature composition of the Modern Jazz Quartet, of which Lewis was the pianist and musical director.

Download Bill Evans’ sheet music transcriptions from our Library.

Lewis wrote “Django” in 1954 as a tribute to his friend, the Belgian-born jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt, who had died the previous year. It begins with a 20-bar theme that was described by Ted Gioia in his book The Jazz Standards as dirge-like and mournful. The entry for “django” in the original edition of the Real Book only contained the chord changes for this theme.

It is followed by solo sections in modified Thirty-two-bar AABA form, where the first two A sections contain six bars instead of eight, the eight-bar B section contains a pedal point on the tonic, and the final twelve-bar A section contains a boogie bass motif. The solo sections are separated by interludes in double-time derived from the introductory theme. The composition ends with a full repeat of the introductory section.

bill evans sheet music Bill Evans play

William John Evans (August 16, 1929–September 15, 1980) was an American jazz pianist and composer who mostly played in trios. His use of impressionist harmony, inventive interpretation of traditional jazz repertoire, block chords, and trademark rhythmically independent, “singing” melodic lines continue to influence jazz pianists today.

Born in Plainfield, New Jersey, in 1929, he was classically trained at Southeastern Louisiana University and the Mannes School of Music, in New York City, where he majored in composition and received the Artist Diploma. In 1955, he moved to New York City, where he worked with bandleader and theorist George Russell. In 1958, Evans joined Miles Davis‘s sextet, which in 1959, then immersed in modal jazz, recorded Kind of Blue, the best-selling jazz album of all time. During that time, Evans was also playing with Chet Baker for the album Chet.

In late 1959, Evans left the Miles Davis band and began his career as a leader, with bassist Scott LaFaro and drummer Paul Motian, a group now regarded as a seminal modern jazz trio. In 1961, ten days after finishing an engagement at the New York Village Vanguard jazz club, LaFaro died in a car accident. After months of seclusion, Evans reemerged with a new trio, featuring bassist Chuck Israels.

In 1963, Evans recorded Conversations with Myself, a solo album using the unconventional technique of overdubbing himself. In 1966, he met bassist Eddie Gómez, with whom he worked for 11 years.

Many of Evans’s compositions, such as “Waltz for Debby“, have become standards, played and recorded by many artists. Evans received 31 Grammy nominations and seven awards, and was inducted into the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame.

Bill Evans was an avid reader, in particular philosophy and humorous books. His shelves held works by Plato, Voltaire, Whitehead, Santayana, Freud, Margaret Mead, Sartre and Thomas Merton; and he had a special fondness for Thomas Hardy‘s work. He was fascinated with Eastern religions and philosophies, including Islam, Zen, and Buddhism. It was Evans who introduced John Coltrane to the Indian philosophy of Krishnamurti.

Evans liked to paint and draw. He was also a keen golfer, a hobby that began on his father’s golf course. Evans had a fondness for horse racing and frequently gambled hundreds of dollars, often winning. During his last years, he even owned a racehorse named “Annie Hall” with producer Jack Rollins.

Evans has left his mark on such players as Chick Corea, Diana Krall, Ralph Towner, Herbie Hancock, John McLaughlin, John Taylor, Steve Kuhn, Vince Guaraldi, Don Friedman, Marian McPartland, Denny Zeitlin, Paul Bley, Bobo Stenson, Warren Bernhardt, Michel Petrucciani, Lenny Breau, Keith Jarrett, Vicente Inti Jones Alvarado, and Rick Wright of Pink Floyd, as well as many other musicians worldwide. The music of Bill Evans continues to inspire younger pianists including Fred Hersch, Bill Charlap, Lyle Mays, and Eliane Elias and arguably Brad Mehldau early in his career.

Many of his tunes, such as “Waltz for Debby“, “Turn Out the Stars“, “Very Early”, and “Funkallero“, have become often-recorded jazz standards.

During his lifetime, Evans was honored with 31 Grammy nominations and seven Awards. In 1994, he was posthumously honored with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Evans influenced the character Seb’s wardrobe in the film La La Land.

List of compositions

Main article: List of compositions by Bill Evans

Evans’s repertoire consisted of both jazz standards and original compositions. Many of these were dedicated to people close to him. Some known examples are: “Waltz for Debby”, for his niece; “For Nenette”, for his wife; “Letter to Evan”, for his son; “NYC’s No Lark”, in memory of friend pianist Sonny Clark; “Re: Person I Knew”, an anagram of the name of his friend and producer Orrin Keepnews; “We Will Meet Again”, for his brother; “Peri’s Scope”, for girlfriend Peri Cousins; “One for Helen” and “Song for Helen”, for manager Helen Keane; “B minor Waltz (For Ellaine)”, for girlfriend Ellaine Schultz; “Laurie”, for girlfriend Laurie Verchomin; “Yet Ne’er Broken”, an anagram of the name of cocaine dealer Robert Kenney; “Maxine”, for his stepdaughter; “Tiffany”, for Joe LaBarbera’s daughter; “Knit For Mary F.” for fan Mary Franksen from Omaha.