JAZZBO NOTES ESSENTIAL RECORDING
Most of Thelonious Monk’s significant work was recorded fairly early in his career, so I was surprised to find out that Solo Monk dates from 1964.
Most of the tunes on this date are covers of pop tunes from the 30s and 40s. How Monk imbues these tunes with his personality gives invaluable insight into his working methods. Listen to how Monk transforms these tunes with his trademark rhythmic displacements, variable pacing, and “wrong” notes. Enjoy his mastery of stride piano.
Monk gives these tunes an irresistable combination of melancholy, puckishness, and nostalgia.
There really isn’t a whole lot more to say about Solo Monk except that it’s perfect.