George Shearing Quintet

As a belated birthday present, I took Brooke tonight to see the George Shearing Quintet. George is the author of “Lullaby of Birdland” and still an amazing pianist at the age of 82. He just glided over the keys and it was the quickest two hours I’ve ever spent listening to jazz. Like all great jazz artists, his life story is one of incredible circumstances. Born blind and the youngest of nine children to working class parents in England, he learned piano without much formal musical training, and has been performing since the 1930s. He doesn’t perform often; I think he’s only playing about 6 dates in the next year, but if you get a chance, go and see him. At his age, you may not get a second chance! By the way, “Lullaby of Birdland” sounded pretty fresh for a song he wrote 50 years ago.