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#1131717 - 08/12/05 05:13 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
swingal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/05
Posts: 1094
Loc: England
Just a couple of comments. On our satelite TV we have a program called 'Performance' and from time to time they do some very interesting Jazz items. I caught one on Keith Jarret that brought up the situation where he had a very strange medical condition that took him some 2 years to combat. He has rehabilitated and recovered but it was very dramatic. I do like live video/DVD recordings of jazz pianists as they are inspirational to my own playing, which is completely by ear.

The other point is if anyone is keen to buy a set of 4 CD's of Bud Powell they are on offer at Amazon US location and hopefully in the UK too.

I'am afraid I missed his name on my list but should have had it on. He was said to have been able to copy Art Tatum's style and I do see what they mean as I played a tape from a radio program today mentioning that very subject. I had forgotten what he was like which is very remiss of me. Hope to get these Powell CDs.

Alan

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#1131718 - 08/13/05 10:34 AM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
dpvjazz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/05
Posts: 287
Loc: phoenix az
Interesting observation but there are only four or so women named as favorites. I thought I would add some names that added to history of jazz piano.
1 Mary Lou Williams
2 Shirly Scott
3 Melba Liston
4 Nadine Jansen
5 Marion McPartland
6 Joanne Brackeen
7 Toshiko Akiyoshi
8 Carla Bley
9 Renee Rosnes
10 Diana Krall
Also I notice two players not mention but worth listening if you can find their music
Denny Zeitlin and Dodo Marmarosa. I remember watching my piano teachers hands as he played the blues and being astounded as he worked the keyboard. When I was younger I went to see Earl Fatha Hines and that guy had some long digits he was 80 when I saw him and his playing was wonderful. That brings up another point times change and so do favorites when i was young Fats Waller would have been on the lists as Fatha Hines, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Check out Money Jungle with Max Roach Charles Mingus and the DUKE at the piano and then lets talk about Dukes lack of technique.

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#1131719 - 08/13/05 05:20 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
ipgrunt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 419
Loc: Western US
 Quote:
Originally posted by dpvjazz:
Interesting observation but there are only four or so women named as favorites. I thought I would add some names that added to history of jazz piano.
1 Mary Lou Williams
2 Shirly Scott
3 Melba Liston
4 Nadine Jansen
5 Marion McPartland
6 Joanne Brackeen
7 Toshiko Akiyoshi
8 Carla Bley
9 Renee Rosnes
10 Diana Krall
Also I notice two players not mention but worth listening if you can find their music
Denny Zeitlin and Dodo Marmarosa. I remember watching my piano teachers hands as he played the blues and being astounded as he worked the keyboard. When I was younger I went to see Earl Fatha Hines and that guy had some long digits he was 80 when I saw him and his playing was wonderful. That brings up another point times change and so do favorites when i was young Fats Waller would have been on the lists as Fatha Hines, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Check out Money Jungle with Max Roach Charles Mingus and the DUKE at the piano and then lets talk about Dukes lack of technique. [/b]
Danny Zeitlin is an interesting performer. I believe he's a psychiatrist by training and perhaps he still practices medicine, because he does tend to drop out of the scene for years at a time. If you are in a place where you can hear him perform, do make haste to get to this rare treat.

Women jazz players are also a rare commodity, and this is unfortunate. Here in the Denver area, we have a very talented keyboard artist, Ellyn Rucker who is at home playing with a 12 piece jazz band, or in a cocktail lounge.

I would venture to add another name to that list, Sarah Vaughn. I don't know if you've heard her accompany herself, but it can be great.

And don't forget Shirley Horn.

Until recently, I would not have included Diane Krall in your list, as I had heard only her latest effort singing old standards. I felt she was just another sex symbol trying to make it in a crossover world. Not so. I picked up a copy of her first solo recording at the library last month, Stepping Out. Nice album! Her playing exhibits excellent timing, tasty phrasing and touch, and she sings a bit like Carmen Macrae. I like her. It's a shame what they've done to her, though I'm sure it's put some big bucks in her bank account.
_________________________
-- ipgrunt
Amateur pianist, Son of a Pro

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#1131720 - 08/14/05 10:27 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
rintincop Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/04
Posts: 1614
Nobody likes Red Garland and Monty Alexander?
_________________________
1966 Mason & Hamlin piano.

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#1131721 - 08/14/05 10:41 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
Denny Zeitlin is amazing. I've seen him several times.

As for women jazz players, I used to study with Joyce Collins, who is a very fine pianist in the Los Angeles area.
_________________________
PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1131722 - 08/15/05 01:35 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
ipgrunt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 419
Loc: Western US
 Quote:
Originally posted by rintincop:
Nobody likes Red Garland and Monty Alexander? [/b]
Red's great, but I wouldn't put him on my top 10 list. His playing, for me, is too repetitive and stylized--too many of the same Red Garland tricks heard on too many solos, I guess is my problem. Though some of those tricks, like harmonizing thirds in the left hand, are great ideas.

Again, Monty Alexander is another great player, but not in my top ten. I don't listen to him very much, probably because I'm a purist at heart (my favorite flavor of ice cream is vanilla), and his "innovations" with sound and instrumentation put me off.

Just my humble opinion--everyone has one and all have value. Thanks for bringing their names into the discussion.
_________________________
-- ipgrunt
Amateur pianist, Son of a Pro

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#1131723 - 08/15/05 02:11 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
dpvjazz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/05
Posts: 287
Loc: phoenix az
Both Red and Monty have solo books out there with some great arrangements as do alot of other players posted here. I had a chance to see Diana Krall twice and her concerts were some of the best I ever saw. Another cross over pianist not mention Andre Previn who has both feet in the classics and jazz. Who else in the classical arena has made a successful transition. dpvjazz

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#1131724 - 08/15/05 06:05 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
ipgrunt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 419
Loc: Western US
 Quote:
Originally posted by dpvjazz:
Both Red and Monty have solo books out there with some great arrangements as do alot of other players posted here. I had a chance to see Diana Krall twice and her concerts were some of the best I ever saw. Another cross over pianist not mention Andre Previn who has both feet in the classics and jazz. Who else in the classical arena has made a successful transition. dpvjazz [/b]
Crossover is tough, and Previn is the best, hands down. I have a recording of Handel Sonatas made by Keith Jarrett. Surprisingly good stuff. Jazz players, at least those who haven't been trained classically, have trouble with their legato playing. Not so for Mr. J.

I've also heard a blistering rendition of the CPE Bach Solfeggio played by Bud Powell. While the performance is impressively virtuosic and gets a large hand from the club audience (in Paris, I believe), it sounds quite rough around the edges. It sounds too much like someone playing a classical "style", and not a real classical performance. Impressive, none-the-less.
_________________________
-- ipgrunt
Amateur pianist, Son of a Pro

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#1131725 - 08/24/05 03:27 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
swingal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/05
Posts: 1094
Loc: England
Riddler,

Interesting thing about 'Tea for Two' with which I bore my wife and the family. And must have done, more so than any other number. So have left it more recently. The Art Tatum version is stunning, IMO.

Also talking of classical muscicians apart from piano. Stephan Grappelli persuded Yehudi Menuin (Spelling?) to play T-4-2 once, as he said he would like to try jazz.

It sounds a simple song but with the inevitable key changes in a jazz version it always becomes less than straight forward to me. But I get there ok.

Alan

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#1131726 - 08/24/05 11:06 PM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
dpvjazz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/05
Posts: 287
Loc: phoenix az
Yeah Ipgrunt I would love to hear BUD playing that. Saw Keith Jarrett live twice with the trio and I think I enjoy him in that setting the most. Talk about interplay. Just can't get in to his classical. Tea for two then what is the cut tune now?

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#1131727 - 08/27/05 02:18 AM Re: Who are your favorite top ten jazz pianists?
btb Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 4263
Loc: Pretoria South Africa
Piano is really my world - but wouldn't swop my Grappelli/Menuhin CD "Strictly for the Birds" for half the Gates Empire. There is special appeal in the enchantment of these two consummate violinists (from such different backgrounds) strutting their unique jazz improvisations through, amongst others, the likes of

Sweet Georgia Brown
A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square - Manning Sherwin
Laura - David Raksin
Lullaby of Birdland - George Shearing
Rosetta - EArl Hines
Skylark - Hoagy Carmichael
Sweet Sue - Victor Herbert
Bye Bye Birdland - Ray Hendersen

Glad the company approves of piano greats Ahmad Jamal and Teddy Wilson.

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