Paul Bley, Canadian jazz pianist, Died at 83


Hyman Paul Bley was born on November 10, 1932, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and died on January 3, 2016.

He was a Canadian pianist.

He was known for his contributions to the free jazz movement of the 1960s as well as his innovations and influence on trio playing.

Mr. Bley was a long-time resident of the United States.

Paul’s music can be described characteristically as a strong senses both of melodic voicing and space.

His adoptive parents were Betty Marcovitch, an immigrant from Romania, and Joe Bley, owner of an embroidery factory.

Mr. Bley founded the Jazz Workshop in Montreal in the 50’s, performing on piano and recording with be-bop alto saxophonist and composer Charlie Parker.

He also performed with tenor saxophonists Lester Young and Ben Webster at that time.

He conducted for bassist Charles Mingus on the Charles Mingus and His Orchestra album, in 1953.

That same year Mingus produced the Introducing Paul Bley album with Mingus and drummer Art Blakey.

In 1960, Mr. Bley recorded on piano with the Charles Mingus Group.

Paul hired young avant-garde musicians Don Cherry, alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman, bassist Charlie Haden and drummer Billy Higgins to play at the Hillcrest Club in California, in 1958,

During the 1960s, he was part of the Jimmy Giuffre 3, with Giuffre on clarinet, and bassist Steve Swallow.

Paul Bley passed away at 83 yrs old.