Hands down one of the best jazz pianists in history, Tatum was a blind genius who arguably created the most densely polyphonic and sophisticated pre-bebop piano style of all, fusing stride with swing. In the mids, the bebop revolution, instigated by horn players Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, resulted in a generation of artists led by Bud Powell who would enter the ranks of the best jazz pianists with an approach that treated the instrument like a trumpet or saxophone, picking out syncopated right-hand melodies with horn-style phrasing. When the 50s arrived, there were others, such as Bill Evans , who fused the bop aesthetic with a sensibility nurtured on classical and romantic music, producing a densely-harmonised piano style that was supremely lyrical and richly expressive. The jazz world has produced an abundance of super-talented piano masters in the past years — many more than can be accommodated in this list of the 50 best jazz pianists of all time.
LIBERTY PARK MUSIC
The number of truly wonderful pianists is astounding. There are countless innovative and unique artists that have taken composition and performance to new heights. When I first started learning to play piano, I only played and listened to classical music. Jazz is fundamentally about improvisation in the moment. Listening to jazz has taught me how to tell a story using music. Great jazz musicians do this by developing short musical ideas or motifs into long passages that are cohesive and meaningful. If you are a classical pianist or a beginner that is interested in learning more about jazz piano, this list is for you! I hope that these recommendations can serve as a stepping stone for you to become more immersed in the world of jazz music.
Famous and Beautiful Jazz Piano Pieces
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What a great tune from the Disney canon. It lands on buzzy notes like the A over the Eb in the 3rd bar, or for that matter the Bb in the melody over the D7alt in the 2nd bar and skips some wide intervals to give it kind of a soaring quality. If you want to play jazz piano, you gotta know this one by Jerome Kern from Here we have a classic jazz chord progression built almost entirely on a serious sequence of chords moving in 5ths. That weird intro, too, which always sounded like it was a beat off from where it actually is. And oh, the key centers we visit it even takes a little trip to E major in the bridge , but how naturally they flow. And his phrasing and dynamics on it give it a great surging quality that really uses the chords well. A must-learn tune, this one! And the business in bars is hooked into the melody in such a great way. Through-composed as opposed to A-A-B-A or any such form , and perfectly lyrical.