Thursday, August 29, 2013
AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Steve Kuhn Trio
Steve Kuhn's claim to fame, if you want to call it that, is that he was the original pianist for the classic John Coltrane Quartet in the early 60s. He was replaced by McCoy Tyner after two months. Kuhn has recorded as a leader since 1963. This 2009 CD is a Coltrane tribute and features tenor sax player Joe Lovano along with Kuhn's usual trio. Kuhn was born Mar. 24, 1938 in Brooklyn, NY and grew up in Boston. He was taught piano by Margaret Chaloff, mother of sax player Serge Chaloff. As teens, Kuhn and Chaloff played local Boston clubs together. Kuhn graduated from Harvard and attended the Lenox School of Music with Ornette Coleman. He moved to New York and played with trumpeter Kenny Dorham in the late 50s. When John Coltrane was forming his quartet in 1960, he tried out many musicians at The Jazz Gallery in New York. McCoy Tyner was an old friend of Coltrane's from Philadelphia. There was some uncertainty about whether Tyner wanted to move to New York. So Kuhn was pianist for the band until Tyner made up his mind and decided to join. Kuhn recorded his first album as a leader in 1963. It was a duet album with pianist Toshiko Akiyoshi. In the 60s, he recorded with Stan Getz, Art Farmer and Oliver Nelson. He moved to Sweden in 1967 and led his own trio throughout Europe. He returned to New York in 1971 and signed with ECM Records in 1974. Since then, he has recorded with his own trio and also with bassist Steve Swallow and vocalist Sheila Jordan. The 2009 CD Mostly Coltrane is with his touring trio of David Finck on bass and Joey Baron on drums. They have worked together since the mid-90s. Because this CD is a Coltrane tribute, tenor sax player Joe Lovano was added for the CD and the subsequent tour. Kuhn latest CD Wisteria was released in Apr. 2012. Steve Kuhn is one of those guys that fans may have heard on other artist's recording but they may not be familiar with his recordings. Here's the Steve Kuhn Trio featuring Joe Lovano performing Crescent at the 2008 Jazz Baltica festival in Germany.