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Thelonious Monk: Thelonious Alone in San Francisco

Album Reviews:

Down Beat (1960) - 5 Stars - Excellent - "...Monk was in brilliant form...this LP brings you several of the many faces of this remarkable musician..."

Record Collector (magazine) (p.103) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "The audio quality is exemplary and Monk's repertoire ranges from some of his own celebrated compositions to popular songs from his youth."

Album Notes

Solo performer: Thelonious Monk (piano).

Recorded live at Fugazi Hall, San Francisco, California on October 21 & 22, 1959. Originally released on Riverside (1158). Includes liner notes by Orrin Keepnews.

Digitally remastered by Danny Kopelson (1987, Fantasy Studios, Berkeley, California).

Just as the title promises, this 1959 session features ten solo piano pieces by one of jazz's quirkiest geniuses. The program alternates between originals, including some of his most famous and enduring works ("Blue Monk," "Ruby, My Dear," "Round Lights," "Bluehawk," "Pannonica," and "Reflections") and typically idiosyncratic reinterpretations of pop songs both standard (Irving Berlin's "Remember") and obscure ("There's Danger in Your Eyes, Cherie," included in two takes). Part of Monk's genius is that he never makes a distinction between standards, obscurities and originals, and treats every song as equally important vehicles for self-expression. His style on this album, unique and playfully exploratory, parades his artistry in its purest form, and as such is to be treasured.


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