Thursday, March 5, 2009

AccuJazz News: Roll-Out Continues With "Composers: Monk"

This week's new channel, "Composers: Monk," celebrates the compositions of genius pianist/composer Thelonious Monk. It is the second in our "Jazz by Composer" category, after the popular all-Ellington channel. In addition to a lot of recordings of Monk playing his own tunes we have hundreds of other artists interpreting the music, from Charlie Parker to Ravi Coltrane.

While "'Round Midnight" is undoubtedly Monk's most recorded piece, there are dozens of other compositions that you'll hear, possibly for the first time, by listening to the channel. Tunes like "Skippy," "Work," "Nutty," "Boo Boo's Birthday," and a long list of others are all less-heard examples of Monk's otherworldly writing talent.

I was worried at first that the channel would yield play lists consisting mostly of those most-recognizable of Monk's tunes: "'Round Midnight," "Straight No Chaser," and "Blue Monk." I was pleasantly surprised to hear a whole line up of lesser-known Monk tunes when I first launched the channel this morning.

My favorite Monk tunes are probably too many to remember right on the spot, but a few that really stick out would be: "Bye-Ya," "Evidence," "In Walked Bud," "Crepuscule With Nellie," "Let's Cool One," and "Monk's Dream." What are your favorites? Let me know by commenting right here, or via Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, or the ShoutBox on the AccuJazz home page.

Happy listening!

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