Video Oscar Peterson 'I Can’t Get Started' - Amazing Jazz Piano Solo

Here is a great example of the extraordinary piano playing of Oscar Peterson. The song is ‘I Can’t Get Started’ (With You); music written in 1935 by Vernon Duke, lyrics by Ira Gershwin. Peterson was one of the most accomplished jazz pianists in history. His playing was stunning, technical superior, and totally absorbing. His astounding left hand was one of the best ever witnessed since Art Tatum. He played powerfully, with lightning speed. The articulation of every note was remarkable. His complex piano playing sounded like an entire band of musicians. Peterson was an enormously talented piano player and band leader.

He was born Oscar Emmanuel Peterson (August 15, 1925 – December 23, 2007) in Montreal, Canada. As a child, he was immersed in the black culture of jazz so popular in the early 20th century. Oscar Peterson began piano lessons at the age of 5. He also played trumpet, but tuberculosis prevented him from continuing. He placed all his attention on playing piano. His father was also a pianist and was one of his first piano teachers. His sister taught him classical piano. Peterson was totally dedicated to the piano and committed to an arduous practice schedule of up to six hours a day. It was this complete focus on piano that helped him attain his exemplary piano virtuosity.

While studying classical piano, he became enthralled with jazz, ragtime music, and boogie woogie. At the age of nine, his mastery of the piano had already impressed many adult professional musicians. At the age of fourteen, after winning a national music competition, Peterson dropped out of school and began playing professionally. He played on a weekly radio show, at hotels, and music halls. His style was completely his own, with strong piano blues influences. His career took on legendary proportions as he began his prolific recording career, releasing over 200 recordings. Peterson’s remarkable piano playing earned him seven Grammy awards. In his lengthy 65 year career, he played thousands of concerts around the world, was enthusiastically received, and awarded many honors. Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest jazz pianists of all time.