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Duke Pearson

Duke Pearson was an accomplished, lyrical, and logical -- if rather cautious -- pianist who played a big part in shaping the Blue Note label's hard bop direction in the 1960s as a producer. He will probably be best remembered for writing several attractive, catchy pieces, the most memorable being the moody "Cristo Redentor" for Donald Byrd, "Sweet Honey Bee" for himself and Lee Morgan, and "Jeannine," which has become a much-covered jazz standard. Pearson was introduced to brass instruments and the piano as a youth, and his abilities on the latter inspired his uncle, an Ellington admirer, to give him his nickname. Dental problems forced Pearson to abandon the brass family, so he worked as a pianist in Atlanta and elsewhere in Georgia and Florida before moving to New York in 1959. There, he joined Donald Byrd's band and the Art Farmer-Benny Golson Sextet, and served as Nancy Wilson's accompanist. In 1963, he arranged four numbers for jazz septet and eight-voice choir on Byrd's innovative A New Perspective album; one of the tunes was "Cristo Redentor," which became a jazz hit. From 1963 to 1970, Pearson was in charge of several recording sessions for Blue Note, while also recording most of his albums as a leader. He also led a big band from 1967 to 1970 and again in 1972, hiring players like Pepper Adams, Chick Corea, Lew Tabackin, Randy Brecker, and Garnett Brown. Pearson continued to accompany vocalists in the 1970s, such as Carmen McRae, but he spent a good deal of the latter half of the decade fighting the ravages of multiple sclerosis. ~ Richard S. Ginell
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Sweet Honey Bee

1. Sweet Honey Bee

2. Sudel

3. After The Rain

4. Gaslight

5. Big Bertha

6. Empathy

7. Ready Rudy

x

Track List: Prairie Dog

1. The Fakir

2. Prairie Dog

3. Hush-A-Bye

4. Soulin'

5. Little Waltz

6. Angel Eyes

x

Track List: Wahoo

1. Amanda

2. Bedouin

3. Farewell Machelle

4. Wahoo

5. Esp (Extrasensory Perception)

6. Fly Little Bird Fly

x

Track List: Dedication!

1. Minor Mishap

2. Number Five (Aka Miss Bertha D. Blues)

3. The Nearness Of You

4. Apothegm

5. Lex

6. Blues For Alvina

7. Time After Time

x

Track List: The Right Touch

1. Chili Peppers

2. Make It Good

3. My Love Waits (O Meu Amor Espera)

4. Los Malos Hombres

5. Scrap Iron

6. Rotary

Comments

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"WAHOO", inDEED!!!!!! ! ! ! :-D The time signature reminds me of Dave Brubeck`s immortal "Take Five"....... . w r a p it up, I'll take THIS!!!!! :-D Well, BOTH of `em, if I could GET `em......:-\ . . . . .
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First time hearing him. But I'm amazed. And who ever said only America Got Talent???..L o L ☺
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You can see what Lee Morgan liked about him in terms of a bandmate.
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I loved me some Wahoo. I feel that was one of the all time great albums ever composed..
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Great talent he was
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I discovered Duke Pearson's music through Pandora. What a marvelous musician! The first record of his I heard was Prairie Dog. Soulful. Calming. Intelligent. Classic. True artwork. Thanks Pandora.
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Wow.Such great comments about D.P.I so much cherish his music.That s the reason I do all that I can to help keep his legacy alive.Thanks to all that love and help keep his legacy alive too.Heartfel t regards to all.And Duke Pearson use to say!! Can You Dig It. !! (The Nephew of the late Duke Pearson,)
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Duke of the 88's-piano that is good LP-
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yvettesledge
Brings back memories of my family, bid wiz and Keno games, food and friends. All the dancing, smiling faces and Love that we all had and shared.
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I feel extremely privileged to have just discovered DUKE PEARSON'S music this morning ....How Beautiful!.. . H o w very Beautiful!
Can anyone turn Me on to musicians similar to DUKE who are still performing live concerts,as I know this Great has passed ?
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I enjoyed hearing the music of thishighly gifted writer & artist.I willcertainl y lookinto getting his music to add tomymusic collection.
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One of our accomplished artist. Not sure why Pandora doesn't have one of his best achievments listed called --- "THE PHANTOM" --- every body is missin' out on this one. Come on now Pandora.
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BTW, Andy Bey.
.........ano t h e r great album, this time w/ Flora Purim is "How Insensitive"
Report as inappropriate
I highly recommend Duke Pearson's album "I Don't Care Who Knows It", a great great album, with Andy Bay singing on it as well!! Not sure why pandora doesn't have it listed under his discography, but a great great record none the less! :-)

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