Hailing from the Bay Area’s first family of jazz, multi-instrumentalist Smith Dobson V honors the iconic piano genius Thelonious Monk and his classic 1968 Columbia quartet session, Underground.
Dobson’s father, the late Smith Dobson IV, was a world-renowned pianist who accompanied jazz legends including Art Pepper, Stan Getz and Chet Baker, and his mother Gail and sister Sasha are both acclaimed jazz vocalists in their own right. As a child, Dobson had the opportunity to study with legendary drummer Albert “Tootie” Heath and made his Monterey Jazz Festival main stage debut with his family band at age 11, leading his own band at 15. He’s worked with Bobby Hutcherson, Red Rodney, John Handy, Sheila Jordan, Red Holloway, Pete and Conte Condoli, Phillip Harper, and Ben Goldberg, and leads a number of ensembles. His most recent album is Soul Of Wood, his first recording as a leader on tenor saxophone and is influenced by some of Dobson’s heroes, such as Lester Young, Stan Getz and Warne Marsh. In this tribute to Monk’s final album with his quartet, Dobson and his band perform signature tunes including “Thelonious,” “Ugly Beauty,” “Boo Boo’s Birthday” and “In Walked Bud,” among others.