Thelonious Monk changed the way musicians approach jazz. It's not a legacy to be viewed in a museum, but a living body of work for artists to challenge themselves today, finding new arrangements and expressions, surprising themselves at every Monk call and response.
Pianist John Beasley created his MONK'estra to explore Monk's genius. Beasley recently paid a visit to Morning Jazz to explain why he opened Monk's trunk — chatting about his two recorded volumes of Monk's music, and playing in trio with bassist Ben Williams and drummer Clarence Penn.
The full MONK'estra performs Thursday through Saturday at Jazz Standard.