Ahmad Jamal

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About Ahmad Jamal

One of the most individualistic pianists, composers, and arrangers of his generation, Ahmad Jamal's disciplined technique and minimalist style had a huge impact on trumpeter Miles Davis, and Jamal is often cited as contributing to the development of cool jazz throughout the 1950s. While he played with the skill of a virtuoso, it was often what he chose not to play that marked him as an innovator. Influenced by such pianists as Erroll Garner, Art Tatum, and Nat King Cole, Jamal developed his own boundary-pushing approach to modern jazz that incorporated an abundance of space, an adept use of tension and release, unexpected rhythmic phrasing and dynamics, and a highly melodic compositional style evidenced beautifully on the best-selling 1958 offering At the Pershing: But Not for Me. He has remained active well into the 21st century, carving his own path with a series of live and studio albums.

Pittsburgh, PA, United States
July 2, 1930

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