Pianist Benny Green has been a fixture on the jazz scene since coming out of the Bay Area in the 1980s. A product of old-school mentoring on the bandstand, Green toured with Betty Carter, Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers and Ray Brown. He’s recorded over a dozen albums as a leader, for labels such as Criss Cross, Blue Note, Telarc and Sunnyside.
Cedar Walton was scheduled to perform with his group on the 2014 Jazz Cruise, but the renowned pianist died about six months before it sailed. Green was asked to fill the piano seat with Walton’s group, including drummer Willie Jones II, bassist David Williams and saxophonist Dmitry Baevsky.
In this video interview recorded during the Cruise, Green spoke with JazzTimes about Walton and his other teachers and mentors, including Mulgrew Miller. He also discusses his approach to composing, and shares his thoughts on performing on The Jazz Cruise.
For more information about Green, you can visit his website.
You can see more video interviews from The Jazz Cruise and other events at the JazzTimes YouTube channel.
Benny Green on Cedar Walton:
Benny Green on Mulgrew Miller:
Benny Green on composing for his trio:
Benny Green on The Jazz Cruise:Originally Published