Riverside

Riverside

(Est. 1953) Launched on a shoestring budget in 1953 by traditional jazz enthusiasts Bill Grauer and Orrin Keepnews in order to reissue classic jazz and blues recordings from the 1920s by King Oliver, Jelly Roll Morton, Ma Rainey, Blind Lemon Jefferson, and others, Riverside Records turned out to be one of the premier purveyors of modern jazz. With Keepnews producing the sessions (and writing the liner notes), Riverside soon brought such giants as Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans, Cannonball Adderley, and Wes Montgomery to the forefront of American music. The New York-based company, which also recorded albums by Sonny Rollins, Abbey Lincoln, Art Blakey, Mongo Santamaria, John Lee Hooker, Jimmy Heath, Johnny Griffin, Charlie Byrd, and the Staple Singers, among many others, folded in 1964, a year after Grauer's death. The Riverside catalog (including the Jazzland and Battle subsidiaries) was acquired by Fantasy, Inc. in 1972.


RIVERSIDE FEATURED ARTISTS

Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Monk

It appears that Thelonious Monk (1917-82) has only gained stature in the years since his death. Once considered too eccentric and complex to be appreciated by listeners and other musicians, Monk has become a standard of excellence for those who seek to extend the jazz tradition.

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Bill Evans

Bill Evans

Few musicians seemed less likely to make an impact on the New York jazz scene in the late Fifties than Bill Evans(1929-80), whose introspective solos and delicate touch were far removed from what was commonly considered "hard bop."

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Art Blakey

Art Blakey

In the 1940s Art Blakey, together with Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Charlie Christian, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis, pioneered the jazz form which came to be known as bebop (or, as jazz critic Leonard Feather calls it, “hard bop”). In any event, the form stuck and became the very essence of jazz.

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Chet Baker

Chet Baker

Few musicians have embodied the romantic, and ultimately tragic, jazz figure as totally as Chesney "Chet" Baker (1929-88). Unschooled yet eloquent in his music, the Baker mystique has only reinforced one of the most haunting trumpet styles and ingenuous approaches to jazz singing.

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