Roland Hanna (February 10, 1932 in Detroit, Michigan – November 13, 2002 in Hackensack, New Jersey) was an American Jazz pianist. Hanna studied classical piano as a boy, but was strongly interested in jazz. This increased after his time in military service. He studied at Eastman School of Music and Juilliard School. He worked with several big names, such as Benny Goodman and Charles Mingus, in the 1950s although only briefly in both cases. Then from 1967 to 1974 he was a regular member of the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra. During the 1970s he was a member of the New York Jazz Quartet. Roland Hanna was in semi-retirement for most of the 1980s, though he played piano and wrote the song “Seasons” for Sarah Vaughan’s 1982 album Crazy and Mixed Up, and returned to music later in the decade. He is usually referred to as “Sir Roland Hanna” as he was given an honorary knighthood by President William Tubman of Liberia. Sir Roland Hanna, along with Jimmy Heath, was a professor of jazz at the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College (CUNY) in Flushing, NY.
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