The Pianist with Two Hands: Mike Jones and Great American Songbook

Written By Sonny Akbar Sembada

Hi, my name is Sonny Akbar Sembada and I welcome you to my blog, The Uncle Jazz. The main topic of my blog is everything related to jazz music.. 

The pianist with two hands Mike Jones is really making waves with the Great American Songbook, drawing in a bigger crowd each year than any other jazz pianist out there.

Seriously, he’s the go-to guy for the music in the super-popular Penn & Teller show in Vegas and all over the globe.

The Pianist with Two Hands and Great American Songbook

He kicks off with these classic tunes before the show, in between tricks, and during – it’s a musical extravaganza for the millions catching the performance.

In his impressive four-decade career, Jones has been impressing audiences with his piano wizardry – it’s like he’s playing more than the usual 88 keys, and his fingers move like the Usain Bolt of piano playing.

How does he do it? Well, The pianist with two hands Mike Jones is bringing back what they used to call “two-handed piano” – it’s not as simple as it sounds. It’s when a jazz pianist works the entire keyboard, and his left hand matches up with the awesomeness of his right.

Mastering Early Jazz Vibes

He’s nailing those early jazz vibes like Stride and classic Swing, and people are praising him as a modern maestro of these styles. No surprise there – he’s taking inspiration from two heavyweights, Oscar Peterson and Dave McKenna.

Read also Synthesizer Jazz Pioneer and Guitarist: Pat Metheny

As one review sums it up: “While Jones’ right hand is throwing down notes like a jazz ninja, his left hand is grooving with intricate bass lines – at top speed, it transforms into lightning-fast stride patterns. It’s like getting two shows in one, and it’s incredibly satisfying.” That’s his secret sauce.

Youtube video by Mike Jones 

Clever Musical Flair: Adding the Final Touch

And just to add a bit more flair, he throws in some quick and clever musical comments – everything from old-school torch songs to The Twilight Zone theme.

For over 30 years, he’s been wowing audiences, whether it’s a live gig or a killer recording. His hands are moving so fast; it’s like he’s a one-man jazz orchestra.

Originally from Buffalo, New York, The pianist with two hands Jones studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston. After that, he stuck around, playing with local legends like Herb Pomeroy and Gray Sargent.

Catching Vegas’s Attention

After making a splash on the East Coast, hitting up festivals, and recording like a champ, he decided to take his talents to Vegas. There, he caught the attention of Penn Jillette, who brought him on board in 2002 to perform every night at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino. And that’s how he became a jazz legend!

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