Unless you’re leafing through liner notes, vigorously taking notes in a jazz history class, or making the hang every night then its likely that your only relationship with John Lewis starts and ends with the Modern Jazz Quartet. That relationship isn’t the worst thing in the world as the seminal quartet co-founded and led by Lewis is one of the most important ensembles that gave us classic records like their 1957 self titled Atlantic release The Modern Jazz Quartet, 1956’s Django, 1959’s Pyramid as well as many others. Today the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Jon Batiste pay tribute to John Lewis in The Music of John Lewis released back in March 2017 via Blue Engine Records.

“The depth of his belief makes his music timeless,” notes Late Show with Stephen Colbert bandleader Jon Batiste during an email exchange with Revive. “For artists, what remains impactful and meaningful in one’s art depends on the accuracy and intensity of your insights. Mr. Lewis’s music is still with us, and it is an honor to place my artistry in the tradition of serving it. So put on this record, listen with your eyes closed, and engage your imagination.” Highlights from the record include Batiste’s solo piano rendition of “Django,” the playful “2 Degrees East, 3 Degrees West,” as well as one of Mr. Lewis’s most famous compositions “Two Bass Hit.” Recoded originally back in 2013 in the Rose Theater, The Music of John Lewis is a record you want to add to your collection as the JLCO do what they do best and present this music in its purest form. Scroll down to and stream the record. Like what you hear? Cop the record on iTunes.


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