Leave it to readers to keep the Rifftides staff up to date. Otherwise, it might have skipped my attention that this is Denny Zeitlin’s 80th birthday. As you will momentarily see and hear, Zeitlin has retained the vigor and style that have helped keep him one of the most consistently interesting pianists of his generation; indeed, of any generation. In one of his recent annual concerts at the Piedmont Piano Company in Oakland, California, Zeitlin featured works of Thelonious Monk. Here, he introduces one of Monk’s best-known compositions and explains its geneology.
Happy birthday, Dr. Zeitlin.
Dr? Yes, he is a psychiatrist. Ripostes about that conjunction of professions probably won’t be new, but all comments will be considered.
Thanks to Bret Primack for the video.