Because my father was a great George Shearing fan, my earliest memory of his music is lying on the living room floor playing with Dinky cars while George’s Quintet played Lullaby of Birdland and September In The Rain, with that seemingly effortless easy-going swing that was undoubtedly not nearly so effortless to master.
Later on it was George alone at the piano with Nat King Cole at the mic making the Plays… Sings album. Not only did Shearing enthral a small boy with his elegant piano accompaniments and concise solos; he also got him wondering what it must be like to be blind in this world.
The comprehensive obituaries are emerging. There’s a fine one from The Telegraph here, and here’s is a lovely bit of film to remember him by. He’ll be around, indeed.