Possessor of a distinctive tone and a fluid bop-oriented style, Charlie Rouse was in Thelonious Monk's Quartet for over a decade (1959-1970) and, although somewhat taken for granted, was an important ingredient in Monk's music. Rouse was always a modern player and he worked with Billy Eckstine's orchestra (1944) and the first Dizzy Gillespie big band (1945), making his recording debut with Tadd Dameron in 1947. Rouse popped up in a lot of important groups including Duke Ellington's Orchestra (1949-1950), Count Basie's octet (1950), on sessions with Clifford Brown in 1953, and with Oscar Pettiford's sextet (1955). He co-led the Jazz Modes with Julius Watkins (1956-1959), and then joined Monk for a decade of extensive touring and recordings. In the 1970s he recorded a few albums as a leader, and in 1979 he became a member of Sphere. Charlie Rouse's unique sound began to finally get some recognition during the 1980s. He participated on Carmen McRae's classic Carmen Sings Monk album and his last recording was at a Monk tribute concert. ~ Scott Yanow
- Washington D.C.
- Apr 6, 1924