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Thelonious Monk

Born: October 10, 1917 | Died: February 17, 1982    Primary Instrument: Piano

Thelonious Monk

With the arrival Thelonious Sphere Monk, modern music-- let alone modern culture--simply hasn’t been the same. Recognized as one of the most inventive pianists of any musical genre, Monk achieved a startlingly original sound that even his most devoted followers have been unable to successfully imitate. His musical vision was both ahead of its time and deeply rooted in tradition, spanning the entire history of the music from the “stride” masters of James P. Johnson and Willie “the Lion” Smith to the tonal freedom and kinetics of the “avant garde.” And he shares with Edward “Duke” Ellington the distinction of being one of the century’s greatest American composers...
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