Chicago native and jazz czar Herbie Hancock made his name in the music industry during the 1960s as a leading member of Mile Davis' Second Great Quintet. A stellar pianist, Hancock's career is filled with interchangeable attributes that rotate with each performance. At times he takes on the persona of a mild-mannered composer and performer of jazz standards, while on other occasions he tends to let loose, slinging an electric keyboard over his shoulder and performing fusion hits--a blend of jazz and rock-and-roll.
Hancock--who has won numerous Grammy Awards dating back to 1984--released a new album this year titled "The Imagine Project," where he tests the boundaries of contemporary jazz. In creating this latest album, Hancock traversed the world and commissioned numerous artists of different backgrounds to contribute. Through working with artists such as sitar player Anoushka Shankar from India or Latin music star Juanes, Hancock wants his musical collaborations to help people think about ways to deal with global problems. He admits, however, this idea is quite lofty.
"As a human being, I'm concerned about the world that I live in. So, I'm concerned about peace. I'm concerned about -- about man's inhumanity to man," Hancock told the NewHour's Jeffrey Brown in a recent interview.
Hancock is no stranger to toiling the boundaries when it comes to new sounds and ideas for music. In the 1970s and 1980s his fusion sounds drew criticism from some in the jazz community. People Hancock often refers to as the "jazz police." At 70, Hancock continues to redefine his music, this time with a global influence.
"We should keep looking at finding ways to combine (music), because, I mean, how do you make different colors? You make different colors by combining those colors that already exist." --Herbie Hancock
"I just express myself in any way I feel is appropriate at the moment." --Herbie Hancock
1. What is jazz?
2. What are some instruments that jazz musicians play?
3. What are some genres of music that you enjoy?
1. According to the video, what kinds of music has Herbie Hancock combined with jazz?
2. What are some of the benefits or downfalls when it comes to combining different types of music?
3. If you had the chance to fuse music together, what types of music would you combine? Why?