CD/DVD: Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Monk, Paris 1969 (Blue Note)

CD cover, "Paris 1969" by Thelonius Monk. Credit: Blue Note RecordsDismiss claims that Monk was a burnt-out case after about 1965. There was already evidence to the contrary in the Black Lion recordings, his work with the Giants Of Jazz and the brilliance of his unexpected 1974 Carnegie Hall concert. Now, there is also this DVD assembled from film of a concert at the elegant Salle Pleyel. Monk still had his stalwart tenor saxophonist Charlie Rouse. His new young sidemen on bass and drums had broken in nicely. Philly Joe Jones was a surprise guest on drums; the resulting version of “Nutty” is priceless. We don’t see Monk doing his bear dance, but he was in good spirits nonetheless, and he played three crystalline unaccompanied encores.

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