Randy Weston (born April 6, 1926, in Brooklyn, New York) is an American jazz pianist and composer of Jamaican parentage.He was described by Marian McPartland as “one of the world’s great visionary pianists and composers”.
Weston’s piano style owes much to Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk (he has paid direct tribute to both on his “Portraits” albums), but it is highly distinctive in its qualities: percussive, highly rhythmic, capable of producing a wide variety of moods.
Also been characterized as a “griot of jazz and its African roots”, Weston has said: “It’s so important to teach the history of our music and the origins of our music, which comes directly from the African continent…. Musicians have to be historians, too.” Described as “America’s African Musical Ambassador”, he has said: “What I do I do because it’s about teaching and informing everyone about our most natural cultural phenomenon. It’s really about Africa and her music.”