WBGO Radar

John Beasley: MONKestra vol. 1

John Beasley

As jazz lovers we're quite lucky to have someone like Thelonious Monk, who's genius and compositions are welcomed in any decade. This is because Monk seemed to leave space in his tunes for those who followed, but at the same time wanted to lead. Truth is, most Monk tributes are fun...I don't know why....stop time means fun time.. ?

"John Beasley presents Monk'estra" has spirit being just that. As Neil Tesser illustrates in his accompanying notes, "Round Midnight provides telling insight into this collection of re-conceived and marvelously executed compositions. Hear Rootie Tootie as a cha-cha transformed..."

This band is having a great time with this. You'll hear it on "Monk's Processional", a collage pulled from Monk's trunk and dragged through a New Orleans Roux. It's also a nice chance for the leader to give it his best Monk at the piano. "

John Beasley presents Monk'estra" is released August 19 from Mack Avenue Records.

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