Randy Weston became a jazz powerhouse by knowing his history. Back in the 50s, the Brooklyn-born pianist took the styles of Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk and infused them with the percussive-heavy, rhythmic sounds of African music. The result earned him plenty of notice shortly after he released his first album in 1955, DownBeat Magazine named him its New Star Pianist. And Weston did not disappoint. Over the years he recorded with legends like drummer Art Blakey and trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie and even enlisted the help of writer Langston Hughes for the spoken word/music album Uhuru Africa.
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Today Weston appears as the musical third of The Blew Notes Trio, a combination of music-meets-performance art-meets-painting, with a variety of local poets and visual artists joining Weston onstage. 8:15 p.m. Miller Outdoor Theatre, 100 Concert Drive. For information, call 281-373-3386 or visit www.milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free.
Sat., June 14, 8:15 p.m., 2008