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Benny Green: Happiness!

Read "Happiness!" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Happiness is listening to Benny Green. He brings joie de vivre to the piano keys with his Herculean chops, in-the-pocket soulfulness, and tight arrangements, all of which can be heard in spades on this live date. The scene for this spirited recording was the Kuumbwa Jazz Center--a gem of a venue in California that's been a near-annual stop for Green for more than three decades. This particular event, taking place in June of 2016, found him in ...

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Benny Green: Live In Santa Cruz

Read "Live In Santa Cruz" reviewed by Mark Corroto

We hope you've made the journey these past thirty plus years with pianist Benny Green. From hotshot young lion to keeper of the jazz flame he has consistently electrified audiences with his live performances. Live In Santa Cruz recorded at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center follows up on a recording he made as bassist Ray Brown's sideman twenty years ago. Green built a career, first as an apprentice to Betty Carter, then Art Blakey, Freddie Hubbard, then Brown. His career as ...

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Benny Green Trio: Source

Read "Source" reviewed by Larry Taylor

Benny Green, now 48, is entering his middle years. Early on he was hailed as a budding master; today he has fully blossomed into one of the jazz world's finest pianists. Equally comfortable with a fast-paced piece and or a sensitive ballad, he is a go-to guy for sessions as back-up or leader. His last recordings were as a co-leader, in duo with guitarist Russell Malone, hailed for the exquisite interplay of Jazz at The Bistro (2003) and Bluebird (2004), ...

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Benny Green: Source

Read "Source" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Pianist Benny Green has not been in the studio leading a recording date since his collaboration with Russell Malone, Bluebird (Telarc, 2004). Far from stagnating, Green has most recently been found providing support on recordings like Hilary Kole's You Are There (Justin Time, 2010), Kenny Burrell's Be Yourself (HighNote , 2010) and Anat Cohen's Clarinetworks: Live at the Village Vanguard All this adds up to his attractiveness to Jazz Legacy Productions, a label that specializes in recording ...

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Benny Green: Teaching Jazz to the Next Generation

Read "Benny Green: Teaching Jazz to the Next Generation" reviewed by Victor Verney

After exhibiting great potential as a young pianist during his teens on the San Francisco jazz scene, Benny Green, long regarded as one of the most promising wunderkinds of jazz piano, spent his twenties serving apprenticeships with a virtual pantheon of musical giants. During his thirties, Green fulfilled his early promise, making the transition from sideman to a headline act in his own right. Now, in a small college auditorium in Des Moines, the student had become Zen master, and ...

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Benny Green and Russell Malone: Jazz at The Bistro

Read "Jazz at The Bistro" reviewed by Mike Perciaccante

Russell Malone can play it all -- rock, pop, country, blues, jazz -- you name it. But as anyone who has heard his recording knows, he's most at home (and comfortable) when he's playing jazz. And we as listeners are rewarded with some of the most beautiful sounds, tones and phrasing possible on the guitar. On Jazz at The Bistro, Malone is joined by pianist Benny Green. While live recordings in small rooms (and St. Louis's The Bistro is a ...

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Benny Green: The Place To Be

Read "The Place To Be" reviewed by William Grim

Benny Green is one of the most gifted jazz pianists around, and The Place To Be shows off his abilities in a variety of settings. The album starts off with a big band arrangement of “Nice Pants” which at times sounds like it’s based on the changes of “Critic’s Choice,” a tune that was a staple of the Buddy Rich book from the 1960s. It has a time medium tempo swing to it and features an excellent bass solo by ...

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Benny Green: Green's Blues

Read "Green's Blues" reviewed by Bill Donaldson

Benny Green's talent is such that he can adapt to any situation, as proven by the ultimate testing grounds of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and Betty Carter's group, not to mention Ray Brown's trio--all of which Green joined. As the aggressive hard bop pianist or the unpredictable Carter's accompanist who slips from one thought to the next within a single phrase, thereby creating special demands for her exceptional pianists, Green could switch from one style to another. And when Green ...

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Benny Green: Naturally

Read "Naturally" reviewed by AAJ Staff

On “Naturally", Benny Green offers due respect to several homes that are important to him. No, not a structure. That would be a “house". No, not Berkeley, California, where he grew up. That would be too obvious. In several ways, Green pays tribute to his father's, Bert's, hometown of Pittsburgh. Now, one may not think of Pittsburgh as fertile territory for the development of jazz, at least not from the sometimes myopic view of a coastal metropolis. But Pittsburgh did ...

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Benny Green: Naturally

Read "Naturally" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Pity Benny Green. Born 30 years too late, his fantastic piano technique isn’t the stuff of heated debates. The heir to Oscar Peterson’s legacy, Green’s trio work of the 1990s never made one choose sides, like Peterson, Ahmad Jamal, Erroll Garner, and Dave Brubeck fans once did. After a successful run of Blue Note records, Green like Tommy Flanagan and Hank Jones before him settled into the role of sideman. He recorded over a half dozen dates with bassist Ray ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Benny Green: Naturally

Read "Naturally" reviewed by AAJ Staff

On “Naturally", Benny Green offers due respect to several homes that are important to him. No, not a structure. That would be a “house". No, not Berkeley, California, where he grew up. That would be too obvious. In several ways, Green pays tribute to his father's, Bert's, hometown of Pittsburgh. Now, one may not think of Pittsburgh as fertile territory for the development of jazz, at least not from the sometimes myopic view of a coastal metropolis. But Pittsburgh did ...

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Benny Green: These Are Soulful Days

Read "These Are Soulful Days" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

It's hard to believe that it's been over fifteen years now since a young, cherub-faced pianist by the name of Benny Green took the stage with vocal legend Betty Carter and began turning heads. Stints with Art Blakey, Freddie Hubbard, and Ray Brown would follow, along with an active recording career that put several albums under his belt.

With all the pomp and circumstance surrounding Blue Note's 60th anniversary and Benny's own 10 year run on the label, it seemed ...


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