Monty Alexander Trio
May 8, 2019
Nearly sixty years after he moved to the United States from Kingston, Jamaica, his hometown, Grammy nominated pianist Monty Alexander is an American classic, touring the world relentlessly with various projects, delighting a global audience drawn to his vibrant personality and soulful message. A perennial favorite at Jazz festivals and venues worldwide and at the Montreux Jazz Festival where he has appeared 23 times since 1976, his spirited conception is one informed by the timeless verities: endless melody-making, effervescent grooves, sophisticated voicings, a romantic spirit, and a consistent predisposition, as Alexander accurately states, “to build up the heat and kick up a storm.” In the course of any given performance, Alexander applies those aesthetics to a repertoire spanning a broad range of jazz and Jamaican musical expressions—the American songbook and the blues, gospel and bebop, calypso and reggae. Documented on more than 75 recordings and cited as the fifth greatest jazz pianist ever in The Fifty Greatest Jazz Piano Players of All Time (Hal Leonard Publishing), the Jamaican government designated Alexander Commander in the Order of Distinction in 2000 and in 2018 The University of The West Indies bestowed him with an honorary doctorate degree (DLitt) in recognition of his accomplishments.
His work is in a sense, a history of Jazz piano … and yet, he distills all these influences into his own style.
-Derek Jewel, The London Sunday Times
Audiences find Monty Alexander’s music instantly accessible, exciting and exhilarating, and they quickly warm to it and respond to it.
-Mike Hennessey, Jazz writer/critic, Billboard
When Monty Alexander sits down at the piano, you can’t help but smile. Go ahead, try not to. The jazzman plays with such delight and sense of humor that if your foot’s not tapping chances are you might be dead.
-Guy MacPherson, The Globe and Mail
Alexander, like film-maker Alfred Hitchock, thrives on suspense and surprise, forever challenging the listener to anticipate his next move, whether a mid-stream shift in key, rhythm, tempo, texture, chord progression, or even song form.