Kenny Barron is one of the premier pianists in mainstream jazz. His recent honors and awards include the top pianist ranking in Down Beat's 47th Annual Critics Poll and Best Jazz Pianist for four consecutive years by the Jazz Journalists Association. Born in 1943, Kenny Barron was the youngest of five children, all of whom took piano lessons. By the age of 15 he was playing professionally in Mel Melvin's R&B band. Before he reached his 20th birthday he had already been a member of groups led by Philly Joe Jones, Jimmy Heath, Yusef Lateef, Roy Haynes, James Moody, and John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie.