Thelonious Monk, who was a jazz pianist and composer, produced a body of work both rooted in the stride-piano tradition of Willie (The Lion) Smith and Duke Ellington, yet in many ways he stood apart from the mainstream jazz repertory.
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The sentence essentially presents a contrast between two things about Thelonious Monk (TM). TM produced a body of work rooted in some piano tradition, but he stood apart from the mainstream jazz.
There is one error in the sentence. “Both…and” present a list, and therefore, the elements enclosed in the structure need to be parallel. However, in the given sentence “rooted in..” (a verb-ed modifier) is not parallel to “Duke Ellington”. Logically, Willie Smith is parallel to Duke Ellington, both of which appear in the non-underlined part. Therefore, there is no scope of using “both” in the sentence.
(A) Incorrect. For the error described above.
(B) Incorrect. Lack of parallelism in the “both…and” structure.
(C) Incorrect. No verb for the main subject TM.
(D) Correct. This option eliminates ‘both’ and thus eliminates the only error in the original sentence.
(E) Incorrect. Lack of parallelism in the “both…and” structure.