Hancock investigated several genres, as seen on records like Mwandishi and Head Hunters, and had a 1980s success with all the combination-fest “Rockit.” A movie composer also, he’s won an Academy Award and several Grammy Awards.
Several years later, as a tween, great Herbie was playing Mozart with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Great Herbie started to appreciate jazz compositions during his high school years and, upon entering Grinnell College in 1956, determined to concentrate on electrical engineering. The important initially appeared more practical and enabled him to put money into his passion for technology. Yet Hancock made a decision to change around to music composition and formed his own group, after moving to New York to play with trumpeter Donald Byrd.
Beginning in 1963, he’d be a part of the bandleader’s group for quite a while, using the two determining each other’s sound and Davis introducing Hancock to the electric piano.
On the ensuing years, via the release of tons of records, Hancock built a reputation as an excellent composer who feels free to investigate genres beyond conventional jazz, including fusion to R&B to hip hop. The sonically revolutionary, mysterious and revered Mwandishi (1970) was followed a bit after by the funk-based, platinum-certified Head Hunters (1973); the record featured “Chameleon” and another variation of “Watermelon Man,” whose hot grooves would afterwards be tried in hip hop/reggae groups.
Great Herbie continued playing in various types, including stints using the V.S.O.P. quintet that reunited members of Davis’ group. 1983’s Future Shock featured the award winning, blipped-out single “Rockit,” understood for its MTV coolness.
The next decades found more releases on various labels, including Dis Is Da Drum (1994), Gershwin’s World (1998), honoring George Gershwin’s 100th birthday, as well as the electronica-oriented Future 2 Future (2001). 2010’s The Imagine Project saw the composer working with a global cast that contained Cu, Pink, Seal and Juanes.
Hancock in addition has supplied scores to several TV and movie endeavors. Great Herbie won an Academy Award for the score to ‘Round Midnight (1986), costarring in the job at the same time.
The record featured musicians like Tina Turner, Norah Jones and Leonard Cohen.
Hancock is a professional of Nichiren Buddhism, whose religious practices inform his artwork and philosophies. Using a 34-CD Columbia Records box set released in the autumn of 2013, Hancock afterwards gave lectures at Harvard University in 2014 within its Charles Eliot Norton Professorship in Poetry collection. And in October of this year he released the memoir Chances, co-composed with Lisa Dickey.