Posted Wed Nov 23 10:00:00 2005 - 24 comments
Genius At Work / Conley Graves Trio
24. David S. Johnson Mon Aug 11 14:19:30 2014 PST
My fathers cousin, but my peer group "Billy Schneider played drums on two of the albums.
Bill just passed this spring and I had lost touch over the years. Conley was not one to hide his side men and gave Bill and the Bass player time to display their talent.
Both of my Albums were destroyed when left in my car during the summer 54 years passed.
I would love to hear them again on VI or CD
23. CHARLES DUNHAM Tue Oct 9 23:15:26 2012 PST
I bout a78 of Mr Graves "Love for Sale". I don't remember what was on the other side, does anyone know ? This in 1955-56,long time ago.
22. Simone Golden Fitzgibbon Mon Sep 26 13:13:36 2011 PST
So nice to find information about Conley Graves. My family lived across the street from his mother in Dermott, AR when I was a child. I remember her well and how proud she was of Mr. Graves. I used to hear about him, but never heard him play. Somehow his name has always stayed with me.
21. Chris Hays Tue Jun 21 15:18:45 2011 PST
I had begun to transfer some old 78 records I had, and this brought me to Conley Graves and I decided to Google and was pleasantly surprised to find this blog. When I was a kid, for a time we lived next door to his manager at the time (Edward Robinson) and it was through him our family was introduced to him. We had a copy of Genius at work that was well worn. It was through Mr. Robinson that I acquired something I suspect is a rarity: a 78 RPM promotional recording (sent to radio stations to get airplay). It is the trio with "Dardendella" on one side and "Spring Will be a Little Late this Year" on the other. Dardendella is very nice and I suspect was the side they were pushing. I don't know if this was just for promotion of if there was an actual single released. It was pressed on translucent blue vinyl, which makes it all the more unusual! It still plays ok, although there are some signs of wear on the loud passages. I may MP3 it and put it on my web site for streaming. Listening after quite a few years I'm impressed by how good he is!
Chris
20. Vernon Holland Thu Apr 7 08:19:32 2011 PST
I went to the same school as he in Dermott. Arkansas, he was a little older than me. he was admired by lots of students.
19. Jann Snyder Mon Apr 4 09:48:17 2011 PST
Thxmike---I never realized you responded to me. I am so sorry! Are you still in touch with Conley?
18. John P. Burge Fri Mar 25 18:03:49 2011 PST
Conley Graves and my father became friends when I was a child. I don't know any details. While he was on active duty during WWII he stayed with us a few days while he was on leave. He is a native of Dermott, AR, and our home is 20 miles away in Lake Village. While he was here, he gave a concert at our home for as many people as we could get in the room. I never forgot that. We followed his career for awhile after the war when he was on the Horace Heidt Show,etc. We lost touch with him after that. I am looking for biographical material for our county museum.
17. Charles Fri Jun 25 16:41:44 2010 PST
I would love to know how Conley Graves' career went and how (and what) he's doing these days. I've been a fan for 50+ years but never heard or saw anything of him again. Only now am I getting my LPs into my computer and his is at the top of that list!
16. Stanley Potter Sun Dec 6 16:38:02 2009 PST
I just spoke to Conley Graves. Yes, he's alive and well. I told him that I was swept away by his playing on "Genius at Work" - he only played for me once years ago - and he said that person seems like someone else now. I knew he was good from the little playing I heard him do, but I never dreamed he was that good! He deserves a much better career than he had. I am a classical pianist, by the way...
15. David R. Knudson Mon Oct 5 11:44:21 2009 PST
I just purchased the "Genius" CD through CD Universe. A bit pricey, but it's like an old friend returning after a 50 year absence, so that makes it 'priceless'. I presume the group disbanded in 1958 because I googled John Mosher, and he was recording albums with Cal Tjader in 1958. I hope to see V.I.P. on CD someday. Let's hope!
14. Scott Wilson Mon Jun 1 16:18:27 2009 PST
Interesting! I just recently bought a lot of records from a fellow who no longer needed them, and among them was the Liberty release "VIP" (Very Important Pianist) by the Conley Graves Trio, whom I had never heard of. After one listen, I googled him and landed here. i want to know more, Anyone have a discography?
13. Marcus Kuhn Fri Feb 6 20:45:07 2009 PST
I first heard Mr. graves on a Capitol LP in the 60's and fell in love with his style, even though there were only three selections by him on that LP. His relaxed style was so different from anything I had heard that I almost wore that record out. I regret that I never had a chance to hear him in person for that would have been quite a thrill! Some time ago I found "Genius At Work" on a used LP and just recently found it on a Japanese issued CD. Perfectly titled! My sincere appreciation to Mr. Graves for the many moments of enjoyment he has provided me over the years.
12. david knudson Fri Jan 9 19:44:19 2009 PST
At age 19, my best friend Errol and I sat in the bar of The Saratoga mesmerized by the genius of the Conley Graves Trio, especially the Bach Preludium and Jerome Kern's 'Yesterdays'. He influenced my piano style, ands I owned all of his albums from that period. I, too, would like to find a C.D. conversion. (My records have all gone by the wayside over the past 50 years.)
11. Andrew McNeill Thu Sep 11 18:00:13 2008 PST
I'm a New Zealander and bought an LP about 1955 named - I think - Conley Graves Trio Pays Bach. Whatever the name, I recall the cover as grey with a Bass promintly figured. Severa; years agp I managed to get a telehne number for Mr Gravers and spoke of my enjoyment as a 14 year old of his music. He told me that somefriends from [perhaps] Columbia were re-recoding some of his earlier releases. However, we lost contact and I do not know if that project was completed. Does anyone know that this was successful. I now live in Sydney, Australia.
10. thxmike Sat Jun 21 19:46:14 2008 PST
Please send along a message to Jann Snyder. I see Conley every Saturday and he is doing well. I spent today with him. Conley is in good spirits and is sound in mind. I got his piano room set up for him to play some more.

Please have Jann contact me and I will get Conley's contact information to her.
Conley is truely one of the greats!
9. Steve Taylor Sat Feb 9 17:23:44 2008 PST
Have and still enjoy Genius at Work. CG had one other album which I have. It was on Liberty Recors and titled VIP - Very Important Pianist. Would love to know if he had any others. His Genius now available on CD remastered - What a joy!
8. WALTER CORONEL Mon Jan 21 17:08:09 2008 PST
I USED TO VISIT THE SARATOGA ON SUNSET BLVD IN THE 195O'S. CONLEY AND HIS TRIO WERE GREAT. HE CALLED ETUDE 2 " JOHAN" IN THOSE DAYS. WE SPENT HOURS LISTENING TO THE TRIO. I JUST PURCHASED "GENIUS AT WORK" FROM ITUNES. SOUNDS GREAT!!!! LIKE TO HEAR WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO THEM
7. JANN SNYDER Thu Jan 10 18:44:14 2008 PST
Conley Graves is my cousin through Lois Bates Anderson. We have lost touch with him, and would dearly love to know how he is. Could you help, Mr. Allmond? Thank you.
6. Darryl Milstein Sun Apr 1 13:32:26 2007 PST
I am so happily surprised to see that Conley Graves is finally listed on the 'net'. When I was a teen-ager (in the 1950's), I purchased his LP album "Genius at Work" and over the years I wore the grooves right right off the disc from playing it so much!! I would love to find "Genius at Work" and other Conley Graves albums on CD. Does anyone know if they are sold at retail on the net or at music retailers??
5. john bogie Thu Feb 1 19:06:20 2007 PST
where do I begin this the greatest piano solos with john mosher and billy snider Genious at work title 10inch L.P released in australia around 1960 i have treasured this recording for 57 years..every musician i speak to in australia have not had the privledge...does anybody know what happened to this group and where they played? thanks for the oportunity to pay homage to conley graves
4. Ed Allmond Thu Jan 4 21:50:05 2007 PST
I am a pianist who had the great pleasure of living next to Conley Graves in the 1980's. Though we never spoke at length over a six year period, I would trade passages with him from time to time, as we could hear each other's pianos from our respective abodes. I learned a tremendous amount from his genius, and am forever grateful that he was willing to share in this manner.

Mr. Graves is not performing in public anymore. I will ask him if he cares to leave a message here for you. Outside of that, I will respect his privacy and give you a general report on this true West Coast Jazz treasure at a later date.

e.
3. Hank Shiffman Thu May 18 09:52:25 2006 PST
I'm guessing no. The album I found on iTunes is from 1956. And the fact that my blog entry is the second result from a Google search on "Conley Graves" doesn't make me terribly optimistic. There are more recordings than this one, but none online or on CD as far as I can determine. Your best bet is eBay; there are several of his albums on vinyl on offer, all at collector's prices.

Hank
2. Don Courtion Thu May 18 08:45:09 2006 PST
Is Conley Graves still playing and if so, where would he be?
Is there any recordings available?

Thank You
Don
1. bob thompson Wed Apr 19 19:59:11 2006 PST
Conley Graves trio played live at a restaurant called The Saratoga, one block west of Fairfax and Sunset in Los Angeles during the period 1955-57. His regular audience, other than myself, included many of the most famous movie stars of the era. Dave Higer, owner of the restaurant, was the first restauranteur in Los Angeles to offer live main lobster on the menu. Try listening to "St. Louis Blues." It features great drum work by Billy Schneider, who hailed from St. Louis. What a great LP by a truly great jazz pianist who never received the attention he deserved.

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