Three Pianists and the Monk Legacy

Gabriel Solis

in Monk's Music

Published by University of California Press

Published in print December 2007 | ISBN: 9780520252004
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520940963 | DOI:
Three Pianists and the Monk Legacy

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This chapter analyzes the work of three pianists—Danilo Perez, Fred Hersch, and Jessica Williams— and addresses the personal experience of jazz musicians of making a place within the larger context of jazz history. Furthermore, it highlights the remarkable variation in the ways jazz musicians have approached the shared concern of crafting interpretations of Monk's music that they feel adequately engage Monk's voice as they hear it, while at the same time bringing out their individual sound. Finally, the chapter considers the variety of strategies the musicians use to maintain Monk in their performances of his music. The impact of cultural politics on this process emerges as significant in the analyses, as does the interrelation of formal musical language and languages of subjectivity and identity in the musicians' descriptions of playing the music.

Keywords: Danilo Perez; Fred Hersch; Jessica Williams; jazz musicians; Thelonious Monk; cultural politics

Chapter.  10669 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: American Music

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