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Bud Powell

One of the giants of the jazz piano, Bud Powell changed the way that virtually all post-swing pianists play their instruments. He did away with the left-hand striding that had been considered essential earlier and used his left hand to state chords on an irregular basis. His right often played speedy single-note lines, essentially transforming Charlie Parker's vocabulary to the piano (although he developed parallel to "Bird").

Tragically, Bud Powell was a seriously ill genius. After being encouraged and tutored to an extent by his friend Thelonious Monk at jam sessions in the early '40s, Powell was with Cootie Williams' orchestra during 1943-1945. In a racial incident, he was beaten on the head by police; Powell never fully recovered and would suffer from bad headaches and mental breakdowns throughout the remainder of his life. Despite this, he recorded some true gems during 1947-1951 for Roost, Blue Note, and Verve, composing such major works as "Dance of the Infidels," "Hallucinations" (also known as "Budo"), "Un Poco Loco," "Bouncing with Bud," and "Tempus Fugit." Even early on, his erratic behavior resulted in lost opportunities (Charlie Parker supposedly told Miles Davis that he would not hire Powell because "he's even crazier than me!"), but Powell's playing during this period was often miraculous.

A breakdown in 1951 and hospitalization that resulted in electroshock treatments weakened him, but Powell was still capable of playing at his best now and then, most notably at the 1953 Massey Hall Concert. Generally in the 1950s his Blue Notes find him in excellent form, while he is much more erratic on his Verve recordings. His warm welcome and lengthy stay in Paris (1959-1964) extended his life a bit, but even here Powell spent part of 1962-1963 in the hospital. He returned to New York in 1964, disappeared after a few concerts, and did not live through 1966.

In later years, Bud Powell's recordings and performances could be so intense as to be scary, but other times he sounded quite sad. However, his influence on jazz (particularly up until the rise of McCoy Tyner and Bill Evans in the 1960s) was very strong and he remains one of the greatest jazz pianists of all time. ~ Scott Yanow
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Bouncing With Bud (Gold Disk)

x

Track List: Bud Powell: The Very Best

1. Bouncing With Bud

2. Dance Of The Infidels

3. Un Poco Loco

4. Parisian Thouroughfare

5. A Night In Tunisia

6. Glass Enclosure

7. Collard Greens And Black-Eyed Peas

8. Autumn In New York

9. John's Abbey

10. Cleopatra's Dream

11. The Scene Changes

x

Track List: Eternity

x

Track List: Ultimate Bud Powell

1. Tempus Fugit

2. Celia

3. I'll Keep Loving You

4. Strictly Confidential

5. So Sorry Please

6. Parisian Thoroughfare

7. Oblivion

8. Dusk In Sandi

9. Hallucinations

10. The Fruit

11. Buttercup

12. Fantasy In Blue

13. Mediocre

14. Dance Of The Infidels

15. Willow Grove

16. Elegy

x

Track List: The Complete Bud Powell On Verve

Disc 1

1. Tempus Fugue-It [Tempus Fugit]

2. Celia

3. Cherokee

4. I'll Keep Loving You

5. Strictly Confidential

6. All God's Chillun Got Rhythm

7. So Sorry Please

8. Get Happy

9. Sometimes I'm Happy

10. Sweet Georgia Brown

11. Yesterdays

12. April In Paris

13. Body and Soul

14. Hallelujah!

15. Tea For Two

16. Tea For Two

17. Tea For Two

18. Parisian Thoroughfare

19. Oblivion

21. Hallucinations

22. The Fruit

23. A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square

24. Just One Of Those Things

25. The Last Time I Saw Paris

Disc 2

1. Moonlight In Vermont

2. Spring Is Here

3. Buttercup

4. Fantasy In Blue

5. It Never Entered My Mind

6. A Foggy Day

7. Time Was

8. My Funny Valentine

9. Like Someone In Love

11. Deep Night

12. That Old Black Magic

16. 'Round Midnight

Disc 3

1. Thou Swell

3. Someone To Watch Over Me

4. Bean And The Boys

5. Tenderly

7. How High The Moon?

8. I Get A Kick Out Of You

11. The Best Thing For You

12. You Got To my Head

14. Mediocre

15. All The Things You Are

16. Epistrophy

17. Dance Of The Infidels

18. Salt Peanuts

19. Sweet Georgia Brown

Disc 4

1. Conception

3. Bean And The Boys

5. Heart And Soul

8. Willow Grove

10. Crazy Rythm

11. Willow Weep For Me

12. Bean And The Boys

13. East Of The Sun (And West Of The Moon)

16. Lady Bird

Disc 5

3. Star Eyes

9. Confirmation

10. When I Fall In Love

11. My Heart Stood Still

12. Blues In The Closet

13. Swingin' Till The Girls Come Home

15. Elegy

16. Woody 'N' You

17. I Should Care

18. Now's The Time

19. I Didn't Know What Time It Was

21. 52nd Street Theme

x

Track List: The Best Of Bud Powell On Verve

1. Lady Bird

2. Dance Of The Infidels

3. So Sorry Please

4. Sweet Georgia Brown

5. Willow Grove

6. Tempus Fugue-It

7. It Never Entered My Mind

8. Bean And The Boys

9. Celia

10. Tea For Two

11. Star Eyes

12. April In Paris

13. Tenderly

14. All God's Chillun Got Rhythm

15. Stairway To The Stars

16. Just One Of Those Things

17. Parisian Thoroughfare

x

Track List: Live At The Blue Note Cafe', Paris 1961

1. Groovin' High (Live)

2. Taking A Chance On Love (Live)

3. 52nd Street Theme (Live)

4. There Will Never Be Another You (Live)

5. Thelonious (Live)

6. Round Midnight (Live)

7. A Night In Tunisia (Live)

8. Monk's Mood (Live)

9. Shaw Nuff (Live)

10. Lover Man (Live)

11. 52nd Street Theme (Live)

x

Track List: Bud Powell In Paris

1. How High The Moon

2. Dear Old Stockholm

3. Body And Soul

4. Jor-Du

5. Reets And I

6. Satin Doll

7. Parisian Thoroughfare

8. I Can't Get Started

9. Little Benny

10. Indiana

11. B-Flat Blues

x

Track List: Jazz Giant

1. Tempus Fugit

2. Celia

3. Cherokee

4. I'll Keep Loving You

5. Strictly Confidential

6. All God's Chillun Got Rhythm

7. So Sorry Please

8. Get Happy

9. Sometimes I'm Happy

10. Sweet Georgia Brown

11. Yesterdays

12. April In Paris

13. Body And Soul

x

Track List: Time Waits

1. Buster Rides Again

2. Sub City

3. Time Waits

4. Marmalade

5. Monopoly

6. John's Abbey

7. Dry Soul

8. Sub City (Alternate Take)

9. John's Abbey (Alternate Take)

x

Track List: Swingin' With Bud

1. Another Dozen

2. Like Someone In Love

3. Salt Peanuts

4. She

5. Swedish Pastry

6. Shaw 'nuff

7. Oblivion

8. In The Blue Of The Evening

9. Get It

10. Birdland Blues

11. Midway

x

Track List: The Genius Of Bud Powell

1. Tea For Two

2. Tea For Two (Take 6)

3. Tea For Two (Take 10)

4. Hallelujah

5. Parisian Thoroughfare

6. Oblivion

7. Dusk In Sandi

8. Hallucinations

9. The Fruit

10. A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square

11. Just One Of Those Things

12. The Last Time I Saw Paris

x

Track List: The Amazing Bud Powell, Vol. 2

1. A Night In Tunisia

2. A Night In Tunisia (Alternate Take)

3. It Could Happen To You (Alternate Take)

4. It Could Happen To You

5. Parisian Thoroughfare

6. Autumn In New York

7. Reets And I

8. Reets And I (Alternate Take)

9. Sure Thing

10. Collard Greens And Black Eyed Peas (Alternate Take)

11. Collard Greens And Black Eyed Peas

12. Polka Dots And Moonbeams

13. I Want To Be Happy

14. Audrey

15. Glass Enclosure

x

Track List: The Amazing Bud Powell, Vol. 1

1. Bouncing With Bud (Alternate Take 1)

2. Bouncing With Bud (Alternate Take 2)

4. Wail (Alternate Take)

5. Wail

6. Dance Of The Infidels (Alternate Take)

7. Dance Of The Infidels

9. You Go To My Head

10. Ornithology

11. Ornithology (Alternate Take)

12. Un Poco Loco (Alternate Take 1)

13. Un Poco Loco (Alternate Take 2)

14. Un Poco Loco

15. Over The Rainbow

x

Track List: The Complete Studio Recordings: 1951-1956

1. Un Poco Loco (1st Take)

2. Un Poco Loco (2nd Take)

3. Un Poco Loco

4. Dance Of The Infidels

5. 52nd Street Theme

6. It Could Happen To You

7. A Night In Tunisia

8. A Night In Tunisia (Alternate Take)

9. Wail

10. Ornithology

11. Bouncing With Bud

12. Over The Rainbow

13. Parisian Thoroughfare (1951)

14. Reets And I

15. Autumn In New York

16. I Want To Be Happy

17. Sure Thing

18. Glass Enclosure

19. Collar'd Greens And Black Eyed Peas

20. Polka Dots And Moonbeams

21. Audrey

22. You Go To My Head

23. Deep Night

24. That Old Black Magic

25. Round Midnight

26. Like Someone In Love

27. Thou Swell

28. Someone To Watch Over Me

29. Tenderly

30. How High The Moon

31. Tempus Fugue-It

32. Celia

33. Cherokee

34. I'll Keep Loving You

35. Strictly Confidential

36. All God's Chillun Got Rhythm

37. So Sorry, Please

38. Get Happy

39. Sometimes I'm Happy

40. Sweet Georgia Brown

41. Yesterdays

42. April In Paris

43. Body And Soul

44. Parisian Thoroughfare (1956)

45. Oblivion

46. Dusk In Sandi

47. Hallucinations

48. The Fruit

49. Tea For Two

50. Hallelujah

51. The Last Time I Saw Paris

52. Just One Of Those Things

53. A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square

54. Moonlight In Vermont

55. Spring Is Here

56. Buttercup

57. Fantasy In Blue

58. It Never Entered My Mind

59. A Foggy Day

60. Time Was

61. My Funny Valentine

62. I Get A Kick Out Of You

63. The Best Thing For You (The Best)

64. Conception

65. East Of The Sun

66. Heart And Soul

67. Willow Grove

68. Crazy Rhythm

69. Bean And The Boys

70. Lady Bird

71. Stairway To The Stars

x

Track List: The Complete Studio Recordings: 1957-1959

1. I'll Remember April

2. Indiana

3. Somebody Loves Me

4. I Should Care (1957)

5. Bud's Bubble

6. Off Minor

7. Nice Work If You Can Get It

8. Everything Happens To Me

9. Embraceable You

10. Burt Covers Bud

11. My Heart Stood Still (1957)

12. You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To

13. Bag's Groove

14. My Devotion

15. Stella By Starlight

16. Woody'n You (1957)

17. There Will Never Be Another You

18. Croscrane

19. Over The Rainbow

20. Blues For Bessie

21. Time Was

22. Topsy Turvy

23. Lush Life

24. Elegy

25. They Didn't Believe Me

26. I Cover The Waterfront

27. Jump City

28. Some Soul

29. Blue Pearl

30. Frantic Fancies

31. Bud On Bach

32. Keepin' In The Groove

33. Idaho

34. Don't Blame Me

35. Moose The Mooche

36. When I Fall In Love

37. My Heart Stood Still (1958)

38. Blues In The Closet

39. Swinging 'Til The Girls Come Home

40. I Know That You Know

41. Elogie

42. Woody'n You (1958)

43. I Should Care (1958)

44. Now Is The Time

45. I Didn't Know What Time It Was

46. Be-Bop

47. Fifty-Second Street Theme

48. Another Dozen

49. Like Someone In Love

50. Salt Peanuts (1958)

51. She

52. Swedish Pastry

53. Shawnuff

54. Oblivion

55. In The Blue Of The Night

56. Get It

57. Birdland Blues

58. Midway

59. Buster Rides Again

60. Sub City

61. Time Waits

62. Marmalade

63. Monopoly

64. John's Abbey

65. Dry Soul

66. Sub City (Alternate Take)

67. Confirmation

68. Star Eyes

69. Lullaby In Rhythm

70. Willow Weep For Me

71. Mediocre

72. All The Things You Are

73. Epistrophy

74. Dance Of The Infidels

75. Salt Peanuts (1959)

76. Hey George

77. Cleopatra's Dream

78. Duid Deed

79. Down With It

80. Danceland

81. Borderick

82. Crossin' The Channel

83. Comin' Up

84. Gettin' There

85. The Scene Changes

Comments

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Tremendous talent!
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Michael Missiras
Trumpet/Corn e t / C o m p o s e r
NYC/ arctic1974@g m a i l . c o m

One of the architects of Bebop along with Charlie Parker, Dizzy gelespi and Thelonious Monk. There experimental playing in Mintons playhouse nurtured the art form of Bebop. Bud Powell forever changed the course of the piano in Jazz.
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*"I Can't Get Started"
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"Can't Get Started" is one of my favorite songs
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lsimone519
I first heard Bud in 1952 And always enjoyed his music It is.just as fresh today and exiting
thank you Bud for your contribution
Report as inappropriate
Where was Bud Powell when the police from these United States tried to kill him by beating him on the head? God does prevail; Bud Powell's music legacy prevails to this day. Do we even know the policeman's names? No because people of a lesser genius and obvious violence are never remembered. Who won? Through his musical genius, Bud Powell's name will live on FOREVER.
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Thank you, dear Bud, for your beautiful music that lives on and on.
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I listened until closing time at Birdland in 1964. No one could surpass him
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it would be nice to have a list of the sidemen on jazz albums
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keep his picture on my wall
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wow what an incredible bio. f-ing tragic, as always. why do artists have to end beautiful lives in tragedy! why oh why
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Music to my Ears!
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i love monk but powell is so.....good as well.
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velocita5
What a yeah, you said it Mr. Robbins, bepob is music for the soul! Love the Bud.
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bud powell was a master - I am reading a book about thelonius monk at this time and bud powell is mentioned quite a bit in one chapter - you can kind of hear monks influence in his playing - so many great musician surfaced around that time too bad some of them had such tragic lives - I love bebop music for the soul!!!
Report as inappropriate
fastfrankie1
I was with the U.S. Army stationed in France from 1960 thru 1963 an was lucky enough to catch Bud Powel at a litle Paris night club called "Le Chat Qui Peche" in 1961. He was fantastic, but very sick at the time (They had to lead him to the piano and back to his table between sets). But once he was at the piano he really performed! it was almost as if he came alive when he was playing. - Frank Pugh


Report as inappropriate
I've been studying Powell lately. He was a true example of one transcending his external life circumstance s . Inspired, sad, amazed, charmed, are but a few of the emotions that have visited me as I have imagined this great artist!

Report as inappropriate
Here is one of the role models for countless jazz pianists. Bud was a tragic figure who lived during the pre-civil rights era, running into one bad situation too many. He was a genius and a prodigy, indeed. If only he were not as defiant and paranoid, he might have been an even greater fugure.
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IT SOUND SO GOOD UNTIL I WANT TO Know more ABOUT THIS MAN.
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stevenschwar z 2 3
Like!
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Far as I know the bio is sadly correct. It is not clear that the rap on the head had anything to do with his illness. He was probably a schizophreni c .
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mooyoo.77
ilove the way he changed the piano style
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I do believe this is his bio.
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thank you for an extrodinary presintation
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ashanta2000
bud was theone that took art tatum to outer space one of the best ashanta2000@ hot mail .com
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Great music. I like blues, jazz, and big band music. Thank you,really neat.
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I don't Think this bio is about Bud Powell, correct me if I'm wrong.
Report as inappropriate
Bud was a genius, also his younger brother Richie Powell, is quite
extraordinar y .

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