Name at birth: Thellous Junior Monk
Thelonious Sphere Monk is considered one of the most important (and eccentric) jazz composers of the century. One of the early practitioners of bebop during the 1940s and '50s, his complex compositions featured irregular rhythms, dissonant sounds and a quirky sense of humor. He was the composer of such jazz standards as "'Round Midnight" and "Straight No Chaser."
His son is noted jazz drummer T. S. Monk.