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Thelonious Monk - Palo Alto (Impulse) --> fresh new monk!

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156.jpg#_ga=2.176630885.1346519131.15925

https://driftrecords.com/products/thelonious-monk-palo-alto

Estimated release date: 31 July 2020

Thelonious Monk – piano.
Charlie Rouse – tenor saxophone.
Larry Gales – bass

Ben Riley – drums.

1. Ruby, My Dear
2. Well, You Needn’t
3. Don’t Blame Me
4. Blue Monk 
5. Epistrophy
6. I Love You Sweetheart of All My Dreams

"After the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968, racial tensions across
the country rose. Palo Alto, a largely white college town in California, was not
immune to the events of the day. Danny Scher, a rising junior at Palo Alto High
School, had a dream to bring Thelonious Monk to Palo Alto to perform and help
bring about racial unity in his community as well as raise funds for his school’s
International Committee.

After somehow securing Monk’s services to perform on Sunday, October
27
, Scher initially had trouble selling tickets and convincing people that Monk was
even going to show up.

With many twists and turns along the way and several hundred people waiting in
the school’s parking lot to await Monk’s arrival before purchasing tickets, the concert
eventually happened and was a triumph in more ways that Monk or Scher could
have imagined. This is a recording of that historic concert."

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Excerpt from Robin Kelley's bio:  "Monk's quartet gave the racially mixed, near-capacity audience an excellent show. They played for over an hour. Monk was called back by thunderous applause to play an encore - a solo piano rendition of 'Sweetheart Of All My Dreams' - and then graciously apologized for not playing another one: 'I gotta play in the city tonight, dig?'... Neither Thelonious nor sixteen-year-old Danny Scher fully grasped what this concert meant for race relations in the area. For one beautiful afternoon, blacks and whites, Palo Alto and East Palo Alto, buried the hatchet and gathered together to hear 'Blue Monk,' 'Well You Needn't,' and 'Don't Blame Me.'" -

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 'I gotta play in the city tonight, dig?'

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Very cool news and it is pre-ordered on Amazon.

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R-14773670-1581318956-3604.jpeg.jpg

So...NOT this, correct?

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7 minutes ago, JSngry said:

So...NOT this, correct?

No. Conversely, this:

Cartel con el anuncio del concierto en el instituto Palo Alto.

 

:) 

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Palo Alto is the first of a series of joint releases to come over the next five years from Impulse! Records in conjunction with the Monk estate’s Rhythm-A-Ning Entertainment, which is led by T.S. Monk.

We hope!

 

 

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Thanks for this welcome news.

I wonder where Mr. Monk was playing "in the City" at that time.  The Black Hawk was already gone by 1968.

Danny Scher -- that's a name I hadn't heard in years.  That young high school student went on to become a music concert/festival booker/promoter here in the SF bay area for years, working for Bill Graham Productions and later heading his own company.

And an "electric flute" to boot!  Well, it was almost Halloween, so horrors were to be expected. :P

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11 minutes ago, duaneiac said:

I wonder where Mr. Monk was playing "in the City" at that time.  The Black Hawk was already gone by 1968.

According to the article linked above, "Even though he was in poor physical and financial health, he was taken by the telephone call he received from Scher in the middle of his three-week run at the Jazz Workshop in San Francisco".

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image-d524f0c8057341ecb1db9ea1fb21914c-f

UNHEARD THELONIOUS MONK RECORDING

OF A SURPRISE 1968 HIGH SCHOOL PERFORMANCE

FINALLY SET FOR RELEASE

 

PALO ALTO

JULY 31, 2020

IMPULSE RECORDS

image-06af7ff8c6c24a1c9bc439a5e71de195-f

 Listen to the first single “Epistrophy”
https://TheloniousMonk.lnk.to/EpistrophyVideoPR.

 

June 19, 2020 (New York, NY) – In the fall of 1968, a sixteen-year old high school student named Danny Scher had a dream to invite legendary jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk and his all-star quartet to perform a concert at his local high school in Palo Alto, CA. In a series of twists and turns, against a backdrop of racial tension and political volatility, that concert happened and was recorded by the school’s janitor. Palo Alto is set for release on July 31, 2020 on legendary jazz label Impulse! Records – marking Thelonious Monk’s posthumous debut on John Coltrane’s label home.

 

“That performance is the one of the best live recordings I’ve ever heard by Thelonious,” says T.S. Monk, son of the pianist/composer maestro, drummer and founder of the Thelonious Monk Institute. “I wasn’t even aware of my dad playing a high school gig, but he and the band were on it. When I first heard the tape, from the first measure, I knew my father was feeling really good.”

 

The vibrant 47-minute album spotlights Monk’s steady touring band (tenor saxophonist Charlie Rouse, bassist Larry Gales, drummer Ben Riley) and features his touring repertoire, which were his finest compositions. 

 

1968 was a tumultuous year in America, marked by the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, unsettling revelations about the Vietnam War, and protests and unrest throughout the country. Palo Alto and the primarily African-American neighboring town of East Palo Alto were no different. This was the stage for young high school student Danny Scher, a jazzhead with an idealistic bent and knack for concert promotion (who later on became a well-known promoter who worked with legendary San Francisco rock promoter Bill Graham.)  

 

Scher says, “I always looked at music as a way to put issues on hold or up to a mirror, whether they be political or social. On October 27, 1968, there was a truce between Palo Alto and East Palo Alto. And that is what music does.”

 

In 1968, Thelonious Monk was in many ways at the pinnacle of his career – his quartet was at its best musically, and he was still riding high in the public eye after he appeared on the cover of TIME Magazine a couple years prior.  However, behind the scenes finances were rough and his health was in bad shape. When he got a call in the middle of his three-week run at the Jazz Workshop in San Francisco, he listened to the teen on the other end of the receiver. Perhaps he was moved by the young promoter’s gumption.   

 

On October 27, 1968, Thelonious Monk and his quartet – Charlie Rouse (tenor sax), Larry Gales (bass), and Ben Riley (drums) – climbed out of the Scher  family van, walking past a rainy parking lot full of surprised Palo Alto and East Palo Alto residents, into Palo Alto High School’s auditorium and delivered a stellar, energetic and historic 47-minute set.

 

Included in the mix is Monk’s lyrical love song “Ruby, My Dear” (Rouse boldly blowing the melody with Monk comping in his unique oblique way then taking the lead with a dazzling solo);  the dynamic and spirited “Well, You Needn’t” taken for a 13-minute ride with solos by all members; the pianist’s captivating solo reading of “Don’t Blame Me” by Jimmy McHugh; an epic dance through “Blue Monk”; and a playful charge through “Epistrophy.” The show ends with a truncated encore of Monk slowly striding through the 1925 Tin Pan Alley hit tune by Rudy Vallee, “I Love You Sweetheart of All My Dreams” and after a standing ovation saying his goodbye because they had to leave to make their San Francisco date that evening.

image-eb9965d719ce475d95228a7d1f19685f-f

(Photo Credit: Lee Tanner)

The concert was quite impressively recorded by Palo Alto High School’s janitor, and the tape sat in the attic of Scher’s family home for years. When he contacted T.S. Monk to release it, they chose legendary label Impulse! Records, the label home of John Coltrane, known as “the house that Trane built.” The relationship between Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane is well documented and historic, so it is particularly appropriate that almost forty years after his death, Monk finally makes his Impulse! debut with Palo Alto.

 

Palo Alto is the first of multiple planned joint releases over the next five years from Impulse! Records in conjunction with the Monk estate’s Rhythm-A-Ning Entertainment led by T.S. Monk.

 

Palo Alto – Thelonious Monk

  1. Ruby, My Dear
  2. Well, You Needn’t
  3. Don’t Blame Me
  4. Blue Monk
  5. Epistrophy
  6. I Love You Sweetheart of All My Dreams

 

About Impulse! Records:

For nearly sixty years, Impulse! Records has stood as a label of musical integrity and lasting cultural significance. Known as the “house that Trane built” in honor of its best-selling artist John Coltrane, the label produced music exciting in its experimental charge, and spiritual in its priority. Sonny Rollins, Quincy Jones, Max Roach, Ray Charles, Alice Coltrane, Keith Jarrett, Charles Mingus, Sun Ra, and Pharoah Sanders were but a few of the legendary musicians who helped define the label's sound and message. To this day, Impulse! continues to proudly wear its distinctive orange-and-black color scheme, and be home to the new vanguard of creative musicians including Shabaka Hutchings and his groups Sons of Kemet, Shabaka & the Ancestors, and the psychedelic jazz trio The Comet Is Coming. 

 

About Rhythm-A-Ning Entertainment:

Rhythm-A-Ning Entertainment is the official company of the Thelonious Monk Estate, founded by Chairman T.S. Monk, Gale Monk, and president Douglas Holloway. RAN Ent is a multi-faceted company involved in music and film production, as well as product licensing.  Please visit: thelonious-monk.lnk.to/home.

 

 

 

 
  Artist Title Time    
 
 
 
  Thelonious Monk Epistrophy (Live At Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto, CA / 1968) 04:26    
 

 

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I wonder if this was the last time Monk came to California?   Living there as a jazz fan in the early-mid 70s, I held out the hope that he would visit sometime.  It never happened.  

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Posted (edited)

I've been waiting for this release for some time now. My wife was a classmate of Danny at Palo Alto High School. He discussed it with her last year at their 50-year High School reunion. I kind of expected this to be released on Resonance.

I am wondering whether the extra expense for the vinyl would be worth ordering it over the CD?

Edited by jazzkrow
wrong word

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I wonder if they shopped this around to Columbia Records first?  Since Thelonious Monk was a Columbia Records recording artist at the time this concert was taped, that would have seemed a more logical home for this release than Impulse.  I guess it would depend on the terms of Mr. Monk's contract with Columbia at the time.  It also raises the question, does Columbia even have a jazz division these days?  They don't seem to have an active reissue program of jazz titles any more and they don't even have a single Marsalis left on their roster, do they?

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I believe it's whatever T.S. is up to.

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For a reason I have yet to find, the Palo Alto live album by Thelonious Monk has vanished from the iTunes music store and Apple Music. It has also been removed from YouTube. I pre-ordered it through Apple but the pre-order is no longer listed. Also, the two preview tracks vanished from my downloads and playlist with no notification from Apple. What’s going on? Did the original gentleman who recorded it surface somewhere? Super disappointed it has vanished. 

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Well, it is still on amazon and my order for the cd is still in . . . release date is 7/31 and my copy is due to arrive on Pops' and Obama's birthday, 8/4.

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1 minute ago, jazzbo said:

Well, it is still on amazon and my order for the cd is still in . . . release date is 7/31 and my copy is due to arrive on Pops' and Obama's birthday, 8/4.

Maybe I should order it from Amazon instead! Love the birthdays on your arrival day! 

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Yes, it's a special day. ;)

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4 hours ago, jazzbo said:

. . . release date is 7/31 .....

Same here, I pre-ordered.

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