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Celebrate Thelonious Monk's Centennial on 88.5 KNKX, Tuesday 10/10

Thelonious Monk at Minton's Playhouse, New York, 1947
William Gottlieb
Public Domain
Thelonious Monk at Minton's Playhouse, New York, 1947

Tuesday October 10th is the 100th birthday of jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk.  Often referred to as "the Picasso of bebop," or "the High Priest of bop," Monk helped to push jazz to a new era and beyond.

In the 1940s and 1950s, the bebop scene was full of unusual, quirky sounds and characters, but none quite so unpredictable and original as Monk.  He may have frightened some jazz fans away with his sometimes bizarre behavior, but the musicians knew they were dealing with genius.

His best known compositions," target="_blank">"Ruby My Dear" and" target="_blank">"Round Midnight" became jazz standards, and they reveal Monk's artistry and his ability to take a song to surprising new places.

"Jazz is my adventure. I'm after new chords, new ways of syncopating, new figures, new runs. How to use notes differently. That's it. Just using notes differently." - Thelonious Monk

Celebrate the mystery, the genius, the humor and the beauty of Thelonious Monk's music with us on Tuesday, October 10th from 9am to 3pm on Midday Jazz, and from 7:30pm to 12am on Evening Jazz. We'll be playing long sets of Monk's music and telling the stories behind it.

Also, check out the many Thelonious Monk tributes happening during the Earshot Jazz Festival, including Danilo Pérez's "Panamonk" project, Jason Moran's multi-media presentation "In My Mind," and Monk's son, T. S. Monk performing some rediscovered compositions. 

Originally from Detroit, Robin Lloyd has been presenting jazz, blues and Latin jazz on public radio for nearly 40 years. She's a member of the Jazz Education Network and the Jazz Journalists Association.