Thursday, September 12, 2013

Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Sphere Monk  (October 10, 1917  – February 17, 1982) was an American jazz pianist and composer, considered one of the giants of American music. Monk had a unique improvisational style and made numerous contributions to the standard jazz repertoire, including "Epistrophy", "'Round Midnight", "Blue Monk", "Straight, No Chaser" and "Well, You Needn't". Monk is the second-most recorded jazz composer after Duke Ellington, which is particularly remarkable as Ellington composed over 1,000 songs while Monk wrote about 70. 
His compositions and improvisations are full of dissonant harmonies and angular melodic twists, and are consistent with Monk's unorthodox approach to the piano, which combined a highly percussive attack with abrupt, dramatic use of silences and hesitations. This style was not universally appreciated, shown for instance in poet and jazz critic Philip Larkin's dismissal of Monk as "the elephant on the keyboard" 
Visually, he was renowned for his distinctive style in suits, hats and sunglasses. He was also noted for the fact that at times, while the other musicians in the band continued playing, he would stop, stand up from the keyboard and dance for a few moments before returning to the piano.

Blue Note Records (1948–1952) 
Genius of Modern Music: Volume 1 (1947 Blue Note recordings)
Genius of Modern Music: Volume 2 (1951–1952 Blue Note recordings)
Prestige Records (1952–1954)
Thelonious Monk Trio (Prestige 7027), 1952–4
Monk (Prestige 7053) recorded 1953-4
Thelonious Monk and Sonny Rollins (Prestige 7075), recorded 1953-4
Riverside Records (1955–1961)
Thelonious Monk plays the Music of Duke Ellington (1955)
The Unique Thelonious Monk (1955)
Brilliant Corners (1956 recording with Sonny Rollins and Clark Terry)
Thelonious Himself (1957)
Monk's Music (1957)
Mulligan Meets Monk (1957, with Gerry Mulligan)
Thelonious in Action and Misterioso (1958, live at the Five Spot with Johnny Griffin)
The Thelonious Monk Orchestra at Town Hall (1959, Charlie Rouse joined the band then)
5 by Monk by 5 (1959)
Thelonious Alone in San Francisco (1959)
Thelonious Monk at the Blackhawk (1960, with Charlie Rouse)
Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane (1957 recordings, 1961 issue) – Inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2007.
Monk in France (recorded in 1961)
Thelonious Monk in Italy (recorded 1961, released 1963)
Thelonious Monk and the Jazz Giants (1987)
Thelonious Monk Quartet Live at the Five Spot: Discovery! (with Coltrane recorded 1957, released in 1993 on Blue Note)
Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall (1957, released 2005 on Blue Note.)
The Complete 1957 Riverside Recordings (2006 collection of the 1957 studio recordings with Coltrane)
Columbia Records (1962–1968)
Monk's Dream (1963)
Criss-Cross (1963)
Monk in Tokyo (1963)
Miles & Monk at Newport (1963, with unrelated 1958 Miles Davis performance)
Big Band and Quartet in Concert (1963)
It's Monk's Time (1964)
Monk. (1964)
Solo Monk (1964)
Live at the It Club (1964)
Live at the Jazz Workshop (1964)
Straight, No Chaser (1966)
Underground (1967)
Monk's Blues (1968)
Other labels 
Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers with Thelonious Monk (Atlantic, 1958)
Thelonious Monk Nonet Live In Paris 1967 (France Concert LP FC-113, 1967)
The Giants of Jazz (Atlantic, 1971) with Art Blakey, Dizzy Gillespie, Al McKibbon, Sonny Stitt and Kai Winding
As sideman 
With Coleman Hawkins
Bean and the Boys (Prestige 7824) 1944
With Milt Jackson
Wizard of the Vibes (Milt Jackson: 1948 Blue Note recordings)
With Miles Davis
Bags' Groove (Prestige, 1954)
Miles Davis and the Modern Jazz Giants (Prestige, 1954)
With Sonny Rollins
Moving Out (Prestige 7058) 1954 (on one track)
Sonny Rollins, Vol. 2 (Blue Note, 1957)
With Gigi Gryce
Nica's Tempo (Savoy, 1955)
With Clark Terry
In Orbit (Riverside, 1958)
Monk's Miracles (1966)
Monk's Greatest Hits (Columbia, 1968)
Midnight at Minton's (c.1941, issued 1973 under Don Byas' name. Monk does not play on all tracks of this or the other two CDs of 1941 material)
After Hours (c.1941, issued 1973 under Charlie Christian's name)
After Hours in Harlem c.1941, issued 1973 under Hot Lips Page's name
April in Paris (Monk album)|April in Paris (1981 2-LP set of the April 18, 1961 Paris recordings)
Monk's Classic Recordings (1983)
Blues Five Spot (1984, unissued recordings from 1958–61, with various saxophonists and Thad Jones, cornet)
Something in Blue, Nice Work in London, Blue Sphere and The Man I Love (all 1971 recordings, collected in The London Collection 1988, three CDs)
The Complete Riverside Recordings of Thelonious Monk (1991, 15 CD, Riverside)
The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Thelonious Monk (1994, 4 CD, Blue Note)
Live at Monterey Jazz Festival '63 (sept. 21–2, 1963, MFSL, 2 vols. issued 1996-7)
Monk Alone: The Complete Solo Studio Recordings of Thelonious Monk 1962–1968 (1998, 2 CD, Sony)
The Complete Prestige Recordings of Thelonious Monk (2000, 3 CD, Prestige)
The Columbia Years: '62–'68 (2001, 3 CD, Sony)
The Complete Vogue Recordings/The Black Lion Sessions (1954–71) (3LP, Mosaic)
All Monk. The Riverside Albums (2010, 16 CD, Universal)
The Thelonious Monk Quartet Complete Columbia Studio Albums Collection (2012, 6 CD, Sony).
Blue Note Records
Ruby, My Dear
Well, You Needn't
Off MInor
In Walked Bud
Monk's Mood
Who Knows?
'Round Midnight
I Mean You
Four In One
Criss Cross
Straight, No Chaser
Ask Me Now
Hornin' In
Let's Cool One
Prestige Records
Bemsha Swing
Little Rootie Tootie
Monk's Dream
Trinkle, Tinkle
Let's Call This
Think Of One
Friday The 13th
We See
Blue Monk
Savoy Records (as a sideman of Gigi Gryce)
Brake's Sake
Shuffle Boil
Gallop's Gallop
Riverside Records 
Brilliant Corners
Ba-Lue Bolivar Ba-Lues Are (also known as Blue Bolivar Blues)
Crepuscule With Nellie
Light Blue
Coming On The Hudson
Played Twice
Round Lights
San Francisco Holiday (Worry Later)
Columbia Records
Bright Mississippi
Oska T.
Stuffy Turkey
Children's Song (That Old Man)
Monk's Point
North of the Sunset
Green Chimneys
Ugly Beauty
Raise Four
Boo Boo's Birthday

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