Les McCann


Oral History Information

Interview Date
Job Title
Musician, Keyboardist

Les McCann began his musical career playing the Sousaphone in school.  He later played drums before discovering the piano, which became the vehicle that launched him into the jazz world.  He recorded with the Fender-Rhodes electrical piano and even tried his hand at a variety of electronic keyboards and synthesizers over the years, but his biggest hit and bestselling jazz albums were made using the piano.  This includes the renowned 1969 live recordings of “Compared to What” with saxophonist Eddie Harris.  The song, which was written by Gene McDaniels, was performed and recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival and sold over a million copies and landed on both the Billboard and Cashbox record charts.