Thelonious Monk: Well, You Needn't (1957)


Well, You Needn't


Thelonious Monk (piano)


Monk’s Music (Riverside OJCCD 084-2)

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Thelonious Monk (piano), John Coltrane (tenor sax), Coleman Hawkins (tenor sax), Gigi Gryce (alto sax), Ray Copeland (trumpet), Wilbur Ware (bass), Art Blakey (drums).

Recorded: New York, June 26, 1957


Rating: 98/100 (learn more)

Anytime you can get tenor sax giants Coleman Hawkins and John Coltrane in a room together, the result is bound to be explosive. Add Monk and his bebop classic “Well, You Needn’t” to the mix, and you’ve got some military-grade dynamite. Coltrane’s and Hawkins’ solos are separated by several minutes, but that does nothing to lessen their impact. Monk’s composition gives the musicians all the framework they need to blow the roof off the studio. And let’s not forget the pianist himself. He saves his own solo for last and throws in unexpected notes, pauses and runs. This reading of “Well, You Needn’t” is the bomb.

Reviewer: Steve Greenlee

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