Kenny Drew Jr.

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Kenny Drew Jr.
Born June 14, 1958
New York City, New York, US
Died August 3, 2014(2014-08-03) (aged 56)
St. Petersburg, Florida, US
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Piano
Years active 1970s–2000s

Kenny Drew Jr. (June 14, 1958 – August 3, 2014) was an American jazz pianist. His music is known for its hard-swinging bluesy sound and large, two-handed rooty chords contrasting with fast runs. The son of jazz pianist Kenny Drew, he did not credit his father as an influence.[1][2][3]


His initial study was in classical music with his mother and grandmother.[1] In his teens he became interested in jazz and pop, but initially worked in funk bands. Later he went into jazz piano and in 1990 won the Great American Jazz Piano competition in Jacksonville, Florida. Drew continued to perform jazz, but he also performed some chamber music. His style has some similarities to his father's, but is different enough to generally avoid comparison; he was considered the more eclectic of the two men.

Drew attended Iona College in New Rochelle, New York, for a period during 1977 to 1978. There, he became pianist for the Iona College Singers, an entertainment troop promoting the college's name and goodwill among local high schools, retirement homes and the like in the Northeast region of the USA.

Drew cited Thelonious Monk as an influence and like Monk often recorded (and performed) solo.

Drew died at home in St. Petersburg, Florida, on August 3, 2014.[3]


  • 1987: The Flame Within (Pony Canyon Records)
  • 1989: Third Phase (Pony Canyon Records)
  • 1992: Kenny Drew, Jr. (Antilles Records)
  • 1992: Look Inside (Verve Records)
  • 1994: Maybeck Recital Hall Series, Vol. 39 (Concord Jazz)
  • 1994: Portraits of Mingus & Monk (Claves Jazz (Switzerland)
  • 1998: Passionata (Arkadia Jazz)
  • 1998: The Rainbow Connection (Evidence Records)
  • 1998: Crystal River (TCB Records)
  • 1998: Secrets (TCB Records)
  • 1999: Winter Flower (Milestone Records)
  • 1999: This One's for Bill (TCB Records)
  • 2000: Follow the Spirit (Sirocco Jazz)
  • 2001: Remembrance (TCB Records)
  • 2001: Autumn (Pony Canyon Records)
  • 2001: Live at the Montreux Jazz Festival 99 (TCB Records)
  • 2002: Another Point of View (Tokuma Records)
  • 2002: Da Skale (Daniel Schnyder / Kenny Dre Jr. Quartet) (TCB Records)
  • 2009: From Memphis to Mobile guest artist with Jeff Rupert (Random Act)
  • 2011: Duality (Random Act)
  • 2012: Coral Sea (Random Act)


  1. ^ a b Scott Yanow, Allmusic biography.
  2. ^ George Colligan. "R.I.P. Kenny Drew Jr.". Jazz Truth. Retrieved August 7, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b Tamarkin, Jeff (August 6, 2014), "Pianist Kenny Drew Jr. Dies at 56". JazzTimes.

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