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Jazz - Released January 1, 1987 | Riverside


Jazz - Released October 2, 2018 | CTS Digital


Jazz - Released December 15, 2017 | Craft Recordings

Hi-Res Booklet
It’s surprising to hear that since the dawn of the ‘50s, Thelonious Monk already wasn’t a pianist like the others. Or even a musician like the others… With The Complete Prestige 10-Inch LP Collection, we find five 10-Inches made for the label Prestige which have been reunited, restored and remastered from original tapes by Joe Tarantino: Thelonious Monk Trio: Thelonious (1952), Thelonious Monk Quintet Blows For LP, Featuring Sonny Rollins (1953), Thelonious Monk Quintet (1954), Thelonious Monk Plays (1954) and Sonny Rollins and Thelonious Monk (1954). Artistically, Monk was already in his honeymoon period even though this perhaps wasn’t the most joyous time in the musician’s life. The law had confiscated his professional card, forbidding him from playing in clubs in New York. But the contract that Bob Weinstock made him sign with Prestige allowed him to shine during this time in the recording studios. So here we find a musician who’s hungrier than ever before. He’s adventurous too. Not to mention being ahead of the jazz of his time. Already, on a few recordings for Blue Note carried out between the end of the 40s and 1952, Monk went down jazz paths less trodden without ever straying off the route. Here, the whole affair is even more striking. Most of all in the pieces where he is joined by another genius, Sonny Rollins, who also devoted himself to shaking up the rules of a thriving musical genre that was at its most intense and revolutionising age. © MD/Qobuz

Jazz - Released January 1, 1961 | BnF Collection

Hi-Res Booklet

Jazz - Released January 1, 2000 | CoolNote


Jazz - Released September 6, 2012 | Entertainment Supplies


Jazz - Released November 8, 2012 | Star Evens Digital


Jazz - Released October 19, 2013 | Jazz Classics


Jazz - Released April 1, 1964 | Legacy - Columbia

This is one of pianist-composer Thelonious Monk's greatest recordings and represents a high point in his career. Performing at Philharmonic Hall in New York, Monk is heard taking an unaccompanied solo on "Darkness on the Delta" and jamming with his quartet (which had Charlie Rouse on tenor, bassist Butch Warren, and drummer Frank Dunlop) on fine versions of "Played Twice" and a previously unreleased rendition of "Misterioso." However, this two-CD set has its most memorable moments during the six full-length performances by a ten-piece group. Monk's quartet was joined by cornetist Thad Jones, trumpeter Nick Travis, Steve Lacy on soprano, altoist Phil Woods, baritonist Gene Allen, and trombonist Eddie Bert. Jones and Woods have plenty of solos and, although Lacy surprisingly does not have any individual spots, his soprano is a major part of some of the ensembles. Most remarkable is "Four in One," which after one of Monk's happiest (and very rhythmic) solos features the orchestra playing a Hal Overton transcription of a complex and rather exuberant Monk solo taken from his original record. This two-CD set is a gem and can be considered essential for all jazz collections. ~ Scott Yanow

Jazz - Released October 28, 1996 | Vogue


Jazz - Released July 10, 2001 | Columbia - Legacy


Jazz - Released April 15, 2011 | Fremeaux Heritage


Jazz - Released January 1, 1982 | Prestige Records

Any Thelonious Monk album that kicks off with a seven-minute version of "Blue Monk" is worth listening to. Backed alternately by bassists Percy Heath and Gary Mapp and drummers Art Blakey and Max Roach, Monk unleashes his idiosyncratic piano lines against a spare backdrop. Beautifully rendered, the opening piece is a highlight of the album, oddly combining disharmonic riffs within a melodic and very memorable structure. It's followed, surprisingly, by a rather tepid version of "Just a Gigolo," more lounge than jazz in execution. The set picks up again, however, on "Bemsha Swing" and later with a noisy "Little Rootie Tootie," another fascinating study in dissonance with some great drum work by Blakey. Because the album was pieced together from three different sessions, it's often difficult to identify the supporting players on individual cuts. Nonetheless, the small settings used on all ten pieces feature intricate interplay between bass, drums, and piano. They allow the necessary space for Monk's explorations, which conjure up images of a mathematician working out geometric patterns on the keyboard. While mathematical music may sound a bit cold and soulless, pieces like "Monk's Dream" and "Trinkle, Tinkle" evoke a sublime beauty as they build order out of chaos. Intimate, intense, and inspired, Thelonious Monk Trio offers 35 minutes of professional musicians practicing their craft. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.

Jazz - Released March 31, 2017 | Doxy Records


Jazz - Released October 31, 2005 | Dreyfus Jazz


Jazz - Released June 13, 2019 | RevOla


Jazz - Released January 1, 1955 | Riverside


Jazz - Released January 1, 1989 | Concord Records


Jazz - Released July 23, 2013 | Original Jazz Classics


Jazz - Released January 1, 1987 | Riverside Records