“Monk wrote this tune for his niece, who thought it sounded like an introduction. Monk liked this, and often began his concerts with it. Mine ends with it.” Denny Zeitlin
In the past 3 years, the legendary pianist/composer Denny Zeitlin has featured annual solo piano concerts at the Piedmont Piano Company in Oakland , California, where he re-imagines the work of jazz artists whose compositions and performance have particularly inspired him. In 2014, he presented “Early Wayne” focusing on classic compositions of Wayne Shorter. In 2015, the concert was devoted to “Exploring Thelonious Monk.” And in 2016 the theme was “Remembering Miles,” re-interpreting Davis’ work over 4 decades.
Sunnyside Records released “Early Wayne” to critical acclaim. “Remembering Miles” is planned for a future release. For now, Denny has decided to post the videos of his Thelonious Monk concert on YouTube.
Zeitlin was powerfully drawn to Monk’s music from his high school beginnings in jazz, back in 1952. Denny was impressed with Monk’s utter originality; his use of space; the internal logic of his compositions and improvising; and his drive and passion for adventure.
Although Zeitlin had recorded Monk’s music on a number of occasions, beginning with his first recording on Jeremy Steig’s 1963 “Flute Fever,” December 4, 2015 marked the first time Denny had ever presented an entire evening devoted to Monk compositions.
The perfect acoustics of the Piedmont Piano Company; an outstanding concert grand; a rapt and appreciative audience; state-of-the-art audio and video recording; and an extraordinary solo piano performance by Denny Zeitlin combine to make the video postings a special experience. For more on Denny, please visit: http://www.dennyzeitlin.com