Lennie Tristano was one of jazz's most extraordinary innovators, possessing a superb piano technique and an awesome musical imagination. Unheralded by the general public, the blind pianist's work was revered by many jazz greats including the legendary Charlie Parker. Tristano's persuasive personality made him an ideal teacher, and he proved that (against the accepted theory of the time) jazz improvisation could be taught. His guidance played a big part in the development of many instrumentalists including saxophonists Lee Konitz and Warne Marsh and double-bassist Peter Ind. It is Ind's long, direct involvement with his subject that makes this such a revealing book: the story of an English musician going to New York to study with a neglected Jazz giant. In the process, Tristano's genius is examined and his reputation revalued, with Ind making a persuasive case for the pianist to be placed at the centre of jazz developments in the mid-20th century.
Peter Ind is now 76, lives in Twickenham. In addition to writing and painting, he runs his own CD company, Wave Marketing Limited, and has recently launched a new career as leader of a jazz band "Bass Clef International" in memory of the jazz club he ran for ten years.