Joe Bonner

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Joe Bonner (April 20, 1948 – November 20, 2014) was a hard bop and modal jazz jazz pianist, influenced by McCoy Tyner and Art Tatum.[1][2][3]

He was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina and studied at Virginia State College,[4] but indicated that he learned more about music from musicians he worked with. In the seventies he played with Roy Haynes, Freddie Hubbard, Woody Shaw and Billy Harper, among others.[5]


As leader[edit]

Year recorded Title Label Personnel/Notes
1974 The Lifesaver Muse Solo piano
1975 Triangle Whynot Trio, with Clint Houston (bass), Billy Hart (drums)
1974–76 Angel Eyes Muse With Billy Harper (tenor sax), Leroy Jenkins (violin), Juini Booth (bass), Jimmy Hopps (drums), Linda Sharrock (vocals)
1979 Parade SteepleChase Trio, with Johnny Dyani (bass), Billy Higgins (drums)
1981 Impressions of Copenhagen Theresa With Eddie Shu (trumpet), Holly Hofmann (flute), Carol Michalowski and Peggy Sullivan (violin), Carol Garrett (viola), Beverly Woolery (cello), Paul Warburton (bass), J. Thomas Tilton (drums)
1983 Devotion SteepleChase Solo piano
1983 Suburban Fantasies SteepleChase Duo, with Johnny Dyani (bass)
1985 Suite for Chocolate SteepleChase With Khan Jamal (vibraphone), Jesper Lundgaard (bass), Leroy Lowe (drums)
1986 New Life SteepleChase Trio, with Hugo Rasmussen (bass), Aage Tanggaard (drums)
1987 The Lost Melody SteepleChase Quartet, with Bob Rockwell (tenor sax), Jesper Lundgaard (bass), Jukkis Uotila (drums)
1988? New Beginnings Evidence Most tracks solo piano; some tracks duo, with unknown (bass)
1991 Monkisms Capri Solo piano; released around 2001
2001? Lights Out Akashic As The Bonner Party; quartet, with Prasanna Bishop (saxes), Artie Moore-Acoustic (bass), Charles Ayash (drums)
2003 The Art of Jazz Piano Black Orchard Solo piano
2013? Current Events Cherry Sound


  • Two & One (Steeplechase); with Johnny Dyani (bass)

As sideman[edit]

With Richard Davis

With Billy Harper

With Azar Lawrence

With Barbara Paris

  • Where Butterflies Play (Perea Productions, 1992)
  • P.S. I Love You (Perea Productions, 12/10/2000)
  • Happy Talk (Perea Productions, 2002)

With Pharoah Sanders

With Woody Shaw

With Harold Vick

With The Visitors

  • Motherland (Muse, 1975)

With Stephanie Hancock


  1. ^ Jeff Tamarkin (1 December 2014). "Pianist Joe Bonner Dies at 66". Jazz Times. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  2. ^ "Joseph Bonner, Jr. Obituary". Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  3. ^ "Joe Bonner @ All About Jazz". All About Jazz. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  4. ^ "Joe Bonner". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2009-12-31.
  5. ^ Yanow, Scott. "Joe Bonner Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 3 April 2010.

External links[edit]