Mehegan, John

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Mehegan, John

Mehegan, John, jazz educator, author, pianist; b. Hartford, Conn., June 6, 1920; d. New Canaan, Conn., April 3, 1984. He studied violin, but was a self-taught pianist. He moved to N.Y. in 1941, teaching privately at first. From 1947–57, he taught one of the few jazz courses at the Juilliard School, which grew into his noted four-volume piano method set. While clearly the largest method up to that time, and one of the largest since, it remained of limited appeal because of its reliance on classical terminology The second volume included a generous selection of transcribed solos from a variety of instruments that are of more general usefulness. He worked as a performer in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and continued to teach through the 1970s. He died at 67 of a brain tumor.


Last Mehegan (1954); Johnny Mehegan Quartet (1954); First Mehegan (1954); From Barrelhouse to Bop (1955); Reflections (1955); Pair of Pianos (1955); John Mehegan Quartet (1955); How I Play Jazz Piano (1956); Casual Affair (1959); Act of Jazz (I960).

—Lewis Porter