Oscar Peterson (1925–2007) was a Canadian pianist and a pivotal figure in the transition from swing to bebop. Peterson, who was dubbed “the Maharajah of the keyboard” by Duke Ellington, had been classically trained at an early age, before he fell in love with boogie-woogie and swing.

Oscar Peterson

Since the 1950s, Peterson has played with many iterations of his Oscar Peterson Trio, most notably with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis. He also formed duos with Herbie Hancock and Count Basie. Throughout his long career, Peterson played with virtually all major vocalists and instrumentalists in jazz, and passed on his knowledge as an educator in various capacities.