Earl Hines has sometimes been called the father of modern piano, a player who bridged eras and influenced all those who came after him.
I find it super interesting to hear about Earl Hines's beginnings in classical music and when he first heard jazz. I love these stories that counter the essentialist view that all black musicians just automatically oozed jazz back in the day. Like everyone else, these musicians were influenced by the people and the culture around them, and their stories are so much more varied than one might think.
At 8:45 he begins his demonstrations of his influences and it is fascinating to see what he picked up & what he did with it. This little bit of video is a real treat.
For more on Earl Hines, check out this obituary from the Washinton Post in 1983. Here's a quote for context on the man:
"...the playing of Art Tatum, Teddy Wilson, Oscar Peterson, Mary Lou Williams, Erroll Garner and so many other greats was deeply rooted in his unique style. His early '40s band, which included Billy Eckstine, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, was considered the incubator of bop."
This is all to say that Earl "Fatha" Hines was a heavy cat - I hope you enjoy this video of him!