Amazing 11-Year-Old Jazz Piano Prodigy
June 2, 2015
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Joey Alexander was born on Bali and now lives in New York. “I’m 11 years old,” says Joey in a PRI interview. “I started playing piano when I was 6, but I already heard music before that, when I was a baby.”
Joey says his dad introduced him to great jazz music by playing records by Louis Armstrong, Thelonius Monk, Duke Ellington and Herbie Hancock. “I started to try this instrument — the piano — and I started to pick up some notes and follow the melody. That’s how it started. When I was 7, I got serious.”
Before too long, Joey was playing at international jazz competitions. At the age of 9, he won the grand prize at an all-ages jazz competition in Ukraine.
Then his YouTube video performances caught the ear of jazz great, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, who invited Joey to play at Lincoln Center last year. At just 11 years old.
Now, he’s going to headline the Newport Jazz Festival this summer.His debut album, “My Favorite Things,” was just released.