Chick Corea

A musical legend on reading for relaxation — and inspiration.

Pianist and composer Chick Corea boasts a long and storied career that captures the convoluted history of contemporary jazz. After replacing Herbie Hancock in Miles Davis’s legendary band, Corea appeared on several of the trumpet player’s albums — including the seminal Bitches Brew — before launching a solo career and forming the landmark jazz/fusion outfit Return to Forever. His new U.S. tour kicked off on Sunday, but before hitting the road, he spoke with us about three of his favorite books.

Buy Chick Corea’s new album, Forever

More music by Chick Corea

The Source

By James A. Michener

“I love all of Michener’s historical novels but this one is my favorite. How the beginnings of the world’s three mainstream religions intertwine using Jerusalem as the focal point is presented wide and deep. Great reading.”

Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original

By Robin D. G. Kelley

“I grew up musically in New York City in the ’60s and ’70s. All my musical heroes were active there, and I wanted to be on the scene to learn. I’m talking about Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Horace Silver’s groups, Sonny Rollins, Ornette Coleman, and one of my biggest piano heroes, Thelonious Monk. This biography by Robin Kelley is the best biography of a jazz musician that I’ve ever read. It took me right back to my New York roots.”

The Ultimate Adventure

By L. Ron Hubbard

“Hubbard has been my favorite writer and storyteller since I began reading his books in the ’60s. This adventure intrigued me so much I wrote an album of music based on its characters and places, which, I’m proud to say, won two Grammys.”