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Bill Evans and his music

            William John Evans (Bill Evans) was born in Plainfield, New Jersey, on August 16th 1929. He was the second son to a Russian mother and Welsh Father. He grew up in a peaceful suburban surrounding in a solidly middle-class family and started his musical studies at the age of six. Evan had been attracted to the piano as an infant after hearing his older brother, Harry, taking elementary lessons. For two years Bill lessened to his brothers efforts, which led to his own exploration of the instrument. For the next five years they shared the same piano teacher, learning basic keyboard and reading techniques. Classically trained on piano; he also studied flute and violin as a child. In a later testimony, Booklet notes The Fantasy Recordings (Fantasy 1989); he stated, "I worked on Bach, Haydn, Beethoven, Dvorak, and Mozart, for three hours a day." In the start of his playing of the piano Bill was decisively in the shadows of his older brother, or at least in his own eyes, and was constantly trying to match, if not exceed Harry's feats. The competition between brothers gave Bill an appreciation for hard work and musical discipline that would remain with him throughout life. Bill Evans never believed he was one of the most gifted pianists of his time but only moderately gifted. All his achievements came through exhaustive training and the slow elimination of weaknesses or areas of ignorance. .
             At he age of Thirteen, Bill Evans, discovered jazz through the excitement of boogie-woogie, and was rapidly moved to emulate his new piano heroes. Later he said, "I started playing boogie-woogie, which is good it's the blues, and what better way to start playing jazz?" (Marion McPartland radio interview, 1979). As a teenager Evans played with a band of professionals, featuring trumpeter/mellophone player Don Elliott and bassist George Platt. Platt would become Evans first musical mentor in the world of jazz.

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