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Herbie Nichols

Primary Instrument: Piano

Born: January 3, 1919 | Died: April 12, 1963    

Herbie Nichols is a perennially neglected jazz pianist and composer. He recorded less than half of his 170 compositions on three classic trio albums for Blue Note and one for Bethlehem before dying of leukemia at the age of 43 in 1963.

He is often compared to Thelonious Monk, and his piano playing and compositions certainly do have some of the harmonic angularity people associate with Monk. But he had a very distinctive sound of his own, more melancholy and, for lack of a better word, poetic than Monk in many ways. In fact, Nichols was something of a poet, as the titles to his tunes suggest. And he was fully Monk's equal in the quality and individuality of his tunes. He is held in high critical esteem within jazz, although his tunes are still not widely recorded. Outside of jazz circles, the only tune of his anyone is likely to know is “The Lady Sings the Blues,” which Billie Holiday set lyrics to and adopted for the title of her autobiography....
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Source: Nic Jones

  • BUY

    Strange City

    Palmetto Records
    2001
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    The Art Of Herbie Nichols

    Sine Qua Non
    1992
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    The Prophetic Herbie Nichols Vol.1

    Sine Qua Non
    1991
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    Out Of The Shadow

    Sine Qua Non
    1982
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    The Bethlehem Years

    Sine Qua Non
    1976
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    The Prophetic Herbie Nichols Vol. 1

    Sine Qua Non
    1955
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The Complete Blue Note Recordings

Blue Note Records (1997)
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