The Best of Thelonious Monk →

May 21, 2015 |

Richard Brody, writing at The New Yorker:

A treasure chest of jazz is being rereleased this week: “The Complete Riverside Recordings” of Thelonious Monk, a fifteen-disk set of his recording sessions, in the studio and live, for that seminal label. Spanning the period between 1955 and 1961, it’s the core of his recorded legacy. The set contains the disks of his that I return to most often, and it shows off a wide range of his art. For me, it’s the most essential trove of Monk’s recordings that exists. Most of the recordings in the set are available separately, as the albums on which they were originally released, but having them together in chronological order tells a musical story that is as much about Monk as it is about the musical times.

The entire collection is available on Spotify, and I’ve been listening to it all day. What an awesome discovery.

After just a few hours with it, I am so buying this. I could get the MP3 edition, but that would defeat the purpose. Call me old fashioned, but this is a set to be enjoyed in physical form. I only wish the vinyl edition had been rereleased as well.

If you’re as crazy about this sort of thing as I am, Amazon has the 15 CD Box Set in stock right now. I’d hurry if I were you, because they’re going to go fast.