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Winston Kelly

Among the great pianists from the post-World Battle II period. Originally inspired by Nat Cole, Kelly started in small rings around NY in the later ’40s. Dealing with Lester Youthful and Dizzy Gillespie, he shortly became the favourite program pianist in NY, featured with Mls Davis (1959-1963), within a cooperative trio with Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb (1964-1967), and frequently with Wes Montgomery. He’s present being a sideman on a large number of recordings (the albums through the ’50s and early ’60s are great), although mantle of command is not put on quickly by Kelly. His Verve recordings through the mid-’60s tend to be commercial. Any moment he documented with Chambers and an excellent drummer (Cobb, Blakey, PJ Jones, etc.) being a rhythm section, can be a listener’s joy.

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