It turns out Monk and his band recorded a soundtrack album for French director Roger Vadim’s 1960 film “Les Liaisons Dangereuses.” There hasn’t been a commercial release of Monk’s 1959 recordings in any form – until now. So this set is collectible, to be sure. weekday mornings at KBCO 97.3 FM. Thelonius Monk, at the piano, and other musicians perform in a studio for the soundtrack to “Les Liaisons Dangereuses.” Courtesy of Arnaud Boubet, private collection
Record Store Day is April 22, and independent retailers will stock their shelves with vinyl collectibles generally available only on that Saturday. The solo pieces like “Six In One” and “Pannonica” are touching, but it’s the set of group recordings that make this a must-have for Monk followers and newcomers alike. But is it worth a casual fan’s efforts to obtain? … Rahul Sharma and Zakir Hussain team up at the Boulder Theater on April 23. There is, as per usual, a handful of jazz releases, including live recordings from guitarist Wes Montgomery and pianist Bill Evans, who apparently recorded in every club where he performed during his short life. No matter your preferred format, be sure to hear this unearthed time capsule, from a time when giants like Monk walked the earth. There is one surprising discovery that will be on vinyl that day: a two-record set of essentially forgotten recordings from the revolutionary pianist and composer Thelonious Monk. Takes on “Rhythm-A-Ning” and “Well You Needn’t” include ace improvisations from Monk’s longtime tenor sax companion Charlie Rouse, as well as the underappreciated (in America) French saxophonist Barney Wilen. The rhythm section is filled out by two well-known names that weren’t so recognized for their work with the pianist, bassist Sam Jones and drummer Art Taylor. Follow him on Twitter: @Bretontheradio Monk’s approach to piano is inimitable: warm, quirky and reflective, and the sound quality of the music is at least the equal of his Riverside recordings. Vocalist Sheryl Renee joins the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra for a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald at Dazzle on April 13. There hasn’t been anyone remotely like him since. The material presents Monk the pianist in his prime: He was wrapping up a long, glorious run of recordings on the independent Riverside label and just about to move to Columbia Records, and greater fame, at the time these recordings were made. Keeping in mind that “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” (Sam Records/Saga) will be available as a 2-CD set and digital download on May 19, one could safely assume that you will be able to hear this vital music soon enough. Vinyl collectors, though (I’m not one, but I appreciate their enthusiasm) will probably want to line up for this two-record collection on Record Store Day. Bret Saunders ( can be heard from 6 to 11 a.m. … Ravi Coltrane (son of John and an excellent saxophonist in his own right) holds down three nights at Dazzle, April 19-21. … The Fareed Haque-Tony Monaco trio plays Nocturne on April 18. … Speaking of Dazzle, the longtime Denver favorite at 930 Lincoln is relocating to 1512 Champa on June 1, with considerably more performance space.