206 West 118th Street
In those days, a fresh, young pianist named Thelonious Monk joined the innovative drummer, Kenny Clarke, in the house band at Minton’s. It was during their after-hours jam sessions that Monk and Clarke would be joined by the likes of Charlie Christian, an early pioneer of the electric guitar, trumpet master Dizzy Gillespie, and alto saxophone virtuoso Charlie Parker. These sessions, which would sometimes last until 4 a.m., were the home for the new jazz modernists, and these master improvisors worked out new harmonic concepts, breakneck tempos, complex syncopations, and challenging new melodies. Established veterans would eventually come to listen or join in, including Benny Goodman, Don Byas, Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster, Lester Young, Dexter Gordon, and Miles Davis. Virtually all jazz created after this is rooted heavily in the events that occurred during those late nights on the stage at Minton’s. It is with this spirit that we proudly announce the “Minton’s Legacy Jam Session”, a new jam session to honor the music that turned Minton’s Playhouse into one of the most culturally significant jazz clubs in New York City. We aim to give artists a platform to work out new ideas while trying to reach their highest level of artistry, just like that group of young, bold musicians did in the 1940’s.