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Thelonious: Fred Hersch Plays Monk

Thelonious: Fred Hersch Plays Monk cover art

News & Reviews

  • SF Chronicle: Fred Hersch, Performer of "Uncommon Fluency, Feeling, Invention," Returns to Stage

    Fred Hersch will perform two shows in San Francisco this weekend: a free solo concert and conversation at the Community Music Center on Friday and a concert at Herbst Theatre with his new Pocket Orchestra Saturday night. He spoke with the San Francisco Chronicle about his recent triumph over a number of life-threatening illnesses and his return to the stage. "Hersch, who plays jazz with uncommon fluency, feeling and invention," says the Chronicle, "has recovered, regaining his strength through intense physical therapy and getting back to the affirming business of making music."

About this Album

With Thelonious: Fred Hersch Plays Monk, the noted pianist, composer, and arranger Fred Hersch examines works by one of the jazz world’s most legendary keyboard innovators, Thelonious Monk, with a dozen tunes by the enigmatic genius. The conservatory-trained Hersch brings a wealth of insight and experience to the material, shedding new light on Monk’s legacy.

Opening with the classic “Round Midnight,” Thelonious presents a wide range of Monk masterpieces, from the dissonant balladry of “Crepuscule with Nellie” to the playful stride of “Let’s Cool One.” Hersch cites Monk’s “sense of structure, his sense of the beat and his sense of humor” as being influential. Hersch believes that making a solo Monk record, of which there are few, other than those by Monk himself, allowed him to be much more personal with the music.


Fred Hersch, piano

Produced by Fred Hersch
Associate Producer: Arthur Moorhead
Recorded February 1997 at Ambient Recording Company, Stamford, CT
Engineer: A.T. Michael MacDonald
Assistant: Tom Bender
Edited and Mastered by A.T. Michael MacDonald at Foothill Digital, NYC

Design by John Gall
Cover photograph © Louis Faurer/Coutesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, NYC

All compositions by Thelonious Monk, except for "Let’s Cool One," by Theolonious Monk and Denzel Best

Tracks 1-8, 10, published by Thelonious Music Corporation (BMI).  Track 12 published by Thelonious Music Corporation/Warner Chappell & Co (BMI).  Tracks 2 and 11 published by Embassy Music, Inc. (BMI).  Track 9 published by Second Floor Music (BMI).

Executive Producer: Robert Hurwitz

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