Wednesday, December 07, 2011
AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Wynton Kelly
Pianist Wynton Kelly was mainly a very busy sideman with Miles Davis, Charles Mingus and many others. But he also recorded some great solo albums including the 1958 album Piano. He died prematurely so he is somewhat forgotten today. He was born Dec. 2, 1931 in Jamaica but he grew up in Brooklyn, NY. As a teen, he played with Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson, Hal Singer and Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis. After making his solo debut for Blue Note in 1951, Kelly worked with Dinah Washington, Dizzy Gillespie and Lester Young. After two years in the military, Kelly again worked with Washington, Gillespie and Charles Mingus. He is best known for his stint with Miles Davis from 1959-63. He replaced Bill Evans during the recording of Kind Of Blue. The 1958 album Piano was the first of two albums Kelly recorded for Riverside Records. Musicians on the album are Kenny Burrell on guitar, Paul Chambers on bass and Philly Joe Jones on drums. Kelly recorded on several classic Miles Davis albums including Someday My Prince Will Come. When he left, he took Paul Chambers and drummer Jimmy Cobb and recorded for Vee-Jay and Verve. Kelly also recorded as a sideman with Cannonball Adderley, Hank Mobley, Wes Montgomery and many others. Wynton Kelly died on on Apr. 12, 1971 at age 39 of an epileptic seizure while on tour in Toronto. Many jazz pianists have acknowledged Kelly as an influence. Bassist Marcus Miller is Kelly's cousin and his daughter Tracy Matisak is a Philadelphia TV personality. Here's a video for Action by Wynton Kelly.