"The only cats worth anything are the cats who take chances."  Monk

Current location of this HitchHikers based on the location data is
displayed above.
Clicking on the animated image displays time of the location report.
The black arrow marks its exact location.

Thelonious Monk
"Carry Me Back"
at the
"Games Show NYC" in the Macy Gallery at the Teacher's College of Columbia University

The Hitchhiker of Thelonious Monk  is constructed of light-weight reinforced  plywood held upright by a collapsible prop.  A tracking device uses the geo-stationary positioning satellite system to reveal the location of the sculpture on a map in a public web page. A note on its back requests passers-by to become a Player and transport it  one of five places in Manhattan.
The four destinations are:
  •           The sidewalk in front of the apartment building at 234 W. 63rd Street, the residence of                       the Monk family for 64 years.
  •          Outside the pizzeria on the the corner of 64th Street and Amsterdam Avenue.
  •          Anywhere in Central Park south of 72 Street.
  •          On the sidewalk at the Cecil Hotel, 210 W. 118 St in Harlem, the former location of                            Minton's Playhouse.
  •          When all the places have been visited  or by May 24, whichever come first,                                        the sculpture must be taken to Macy Gallery, 444 Macy Building, 525 West 120 St.
The note also tells Players how to register for their share in the artwork.

T. Monk

Carry Me Back Main Page
Lenni Lenape Hitchhiker 

Saul Steinberg Hitchhiker
Press Page

The  animated image marks the current location Clicking on it or the balloons will display the time.
The black arrow marks the exact location. The  animated image marks the current location Clicking on it or the balloons will display the time.
The black arrow marks the exact location. The  animated image marks the current location Clicking on it or the balloons will display the time.
The black arrow marks the exact location.
Thelonious Sphere Monk Thelonious Sphere Monk (1917-1982) is recognized as one of the most influential figures in the history of jazz. He was one of the architects of bebop and his impact as a composer and pianist has had a profound influence on every genre of music. Monk was born on October 10, 1917 in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, but his parents, Barbara Batts and Thelonious Monk, soon moved the family to New York City. Monk began piano lessons as a young child and by the age of 13 he had won the weekly amateur contest at the Apollo Theater so many times that he was barred from entering. At the age of 19, Monk joined the house band at Minton's Playhouse in Harlem, where along with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and a handful of other players, he developed the style of jazz that came to be known as bebop.
Monk's compositions, among them "Round Midnight," were the canvasses upon which these legendary soloists expressed their musical ideas. In 1947, Monk made his first recordings as a leader for Blue Note. These albums are some of the earliest documents of his unique compositional and improvisational style, both of which employed unusual repetition of phrases, an offbeat use of space, and joyfully dissonant sounds. That same year, he married his longtime love Nellie Smith and they later had two children, Thelonious, Jr. and Barbara (1954-1984). In the decade that followed, Monk played on recordings with Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, and Sonny Rollins and recorded as a leader for Prestige Records and later for Riverside Records. Brilliant Corners and Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane were two of the albums from this period that brought Monk international attention as a pianist and composer. In 1957, the Thelonious Monk Quartet, which included John Coltrane, began a regular gig at the Five Spot. The group's performances were hugely successful and received the highest critical praise. Over the next few years, Monk toured the United States and Europe and made some of his most influential recordings.
In 1964, Monk appeared on the cover of Time magazine, an honor that has been bestowed on only three other jazz musicians. By this time, Monk was a favorite at jazz festivals around the world, where he performed with his quartet, which included longtime associate Charlie Rouse. In the early '70s, he discontinued touring and recording and appeared only on rare occasions at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and the Newport Jazz Festival. Thelonious Sphere Monk passed away on February 17, 1982. His more than 70 compositions are classics that continue to inspire artists in all genres of music. During his lifetime, Monk received numerous awards and he continues to be honored posthumously. The Smithsonian Institution has immortalized Monk's work with an archive of his music. In addition, the U.S. Postal Service issued a stamp in his honor. A feature documentary on Monk's life, Straight, No Chaser, was released to critical acclaim.
The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz was founded to honor Monk by preserving the music to which he dedicated his life. Monk's integrity, originality, and unique approach set a standard that is a shining example for all who strive for musical excellence.
The above biographical sketch is from the  Thelonious Monk Institute of  Jazz.
The definitive biography of Monk:  Thelonious Monk: the Life and Times of an American Original by Robin D. G. . Kelly

art hand            Friend Me.

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Mid March, 2011: Lenni, Saul and Thelonious appear on earth, open up email accounts and create Facebook pages for themselves.

April 12 - Thelonious has 78 "friends."  Lenni has 113.  Saul: 88.  They are frequently harassed by Facebook robots who suspect something fishy is going on.

April 22 - Thelonious, Saul and Lenni  reveal their true nature on Facebook.

May 11 - Lost contact with our tracking service.  Stuck off the highway in some kind of truck parking lot.   Only Lenni's battery has juice.

May 13 - Monk says, "Noo Yawk!!  I can smell it.  Home. Mr. Sousanis, the Detroit Greek, pulled all of us out of our box"..... charged their locators and set them up to enjoy a beautiful Spring day here on the campus of Columbia U..  "Maybe tomorrow I'll get midtown and begin my adventure. 

Nick Sousanis, curator of Game Show NYC, Hitchhikers of Saul Steinberg, Thelonious Monk

May 14- 

Monk and friends head downtown in style courtesy of Adam Bush.

Thelonious on his block.

May 16 - Oh, oh! After spending the night at an address at 227th St. and Lowerre Pl. in the northern suburb Edenwald, Monk's geo-locator was taken early the next morning to a dump in in Hunts Point- Longwood.


The orange balloons indicate the possible resting place of Monk's geo-locator.  The painting itself  is probably in some guy's basement where he can admire it in solitude.

Copyright 2011  Jim Pallas