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Daily Dose Of Jazz…

Rodney Franklin was born on September 16, 1958 in Berkeley, California and at the age of six he took jazz piano lessons at Washington Elementary School. He was taught by Dr Herb Wong who was a jazz journalist, disc jockey and music teacher.

Influenced by McCoy Tyner, George Duke, Chick Corea and Lonnie Liston Smith he would develop his own sound. Franklin worked with John Handy in San Francisco, California as well as Bill Summers, Freddie Hubbard and Marlena Shaw. He recorded his debut album in 1978 In The Center on the CBS label at age of 20.

1980 saw the release of the album You’ll Never Know which garnered some major chart success and additional six albums were albums were recorded for CBS during the Eighties and worked with bassist Stanley Clarke. Though Rodney gained some notoriety in the United States he was much more popular in the United Kingdom.

Moving to the BMG record label in 1988 he recorded Diamond Inside Of You,  introducing vocals by Jennifer Holliday, who would go on to find fame on Broadway in Dreamgirls. By the Nineties he produced and released one album on the Nova label, however, pianist Rodney Franklin continues to composer and work in various music genres in and out of jazz.

ROBYN B. NASH

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