Fritz Jones, 2 July 1930, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. A professional pianist from before his teenage years, Jamal (who changed his name in the early 50s) managed to break through to a wider audience than most jazz artists. His trio work produced many excellent recordings and his accompanists included Israel Crosby. The most influential of his advocates was Miles Davis, who recognized Jamals interesting rhythmic concepts as being something that he could incorporate into his own work. Ahmad Jamal At The Pershing during its time became one of the biggest selling jazz albums and stayed on the album charts for nearly two years. On that recording, one of the many highlights is a breathtakingly fast version of Rodgers and Hammersteins Surrey With A Fringe On Top, where Jamal, Crosby (bass) and Vernel Fournier (drums) threaten to take off and spontaneously combust. With this commercial success Jamal worked extensively in the USA throughout the...
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