All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Don Shirley

Don Shirley Don Shirley

Donald Walbridge Shirley was an American classical and jazz pianist and composer. He recorded many albums for Cadence during the 1950s and 1960s, experimenting with jazz with a classical influence. He wrote organ symphonies, piano concerti, a cello concerto, three string quartets, a one-act opera, works for organ, piano and violin, a symphonic tone poem based on the novel Finnegans Wake by James Joyce, and a set of “Variations” on the legend of Orpheus in the Underworld.

Born in Pensacola, Florida, Shirley was a promising young student of classical piano. Although he did not achieve recognition in his early career playing traditional classical music, he found success with his blending of various musical traditions.

During the 1960s, Shirley went on a number of concert tours, some in Deep South states. For a year and a half, he hired New York nightclub bouncer Tony “Lip” Vallelonga as his driver and bodyguard. Their story was controversially dramatized in the 2018 film Green Book.

Source: Wikipedia


Tags

Albums

Watch

Similar

Sarah Vaughan Sarah Vaughan
voice / vocals
Lee Konitz Lee Konitz
saxophone, alto
Jim Hall Jim Hall
guitar
Jimmy McGriff Jimmy McGriff
organ, Hammond B3
Joey DeFrancesco Joey DeFrancesco
organ, Hammond B3

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and through our retail affiliations you'll support us in the process.

MUSICSTACK
Rare vinyl LPs and CDs from over 1,000 independent sellers
AMAZON
CDs, Vinyl, Blu-Ray DVDS, Prime membership, Alexa, SONOS and more
HD TRACKS
Specializing in high resolution and CD-quality downloads
CD UNIVERSE
Specializing in music, movies and video games
REVERB
Marketplace for new, used, and vintage instruments and gear

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.