|Born||September 6, 1919
Red Springs, North Carolina, U.S.
|Died||February 11, 1987
Washington, D.C., U.S.
John Malachi (September 6, 1919 – February 11, 1987) was an American jazz pianist.
Malachi was born in Red Springs, North Carolina on September 6, 1919, and grew up in Durham, North Carolina. At the age of ten he moved with his family to Washington, D.C. He was a self-taught musician.
Later life and career
Malachi was a member of the epochal Billy Eckstine Bebop Orchestra in 1944-45 and again in 1947. He also worked with Illinois Jacquet in 1948, Louis Jordan in 1951, and a series of singers including Pearl Bailey, Dinah Washington, Sarah Vaughan, Al Hibbler, and Joe Williams.
Malachi opted out of the traveling life of the touring jazz musician in the 1960s, living roughly the last decade and a half of his life in Washington, D.C. freelancing, playing with touring bands and artists when they stopped in Washington, and leading music workshops at clubs like Jimmy MacPhail's Gold Room and Bill Harris's Pig's Foot. Malachi's generosity towards younger musicians was legendary. One of the musicians he helped influence recalls that younger players referred to his workshops as "The University of John Malachi".
Malachi is credited with creating the nickname "Sassy" for Sarah Vaughan, with whom he worked with the Eckstine Orchestra and later directly with her. Malachi was fond of categorizing jazz pianists into "acrobats" and "poets", classifying himself among the latter.
John Malachi is the great-grandfather of Carolyn Malachi. The singer, poet, and rap artist received a Best Urban / Alternative Performance Grammy Award nomination in 2011.
- Rinzler, Paul; Kernfeld, Barry, Malachi, John, Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, retrieved July 25, 2015, (subscription required ())
- Yanow, Scott. Biography of John Malachi at AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-05-01.
- Official Website of Jazz Pianist John Colianni
- Eric Niemeyer interview of George V. Johnson
- George V. Johnson, Jr. Music Blog
- "Carolyn Malachi Performs Exclusive Set At The Recording Academy". Grammy.com. NARAS. August 13, 2013. Retrieved October 4, 2013.