Music

Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
10:19 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Gary Burton On Piano Jazz

Gary Burton.
Courtesy of the artist

On this episode of Piano Jazz, innovative vibraphonist Gary Burton stops by the program to perform a set of tunes by Antonio Carlos Jobim, Duke Ellington, Rodgers & Hart and more.

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Jazz Night In America: The Radio Program
11:48 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

When Henry Met Steven

Henry Butler (left) and Steven Bernstein.
Stephanie Berger Courtesy of the artist

In 1984, when a young Steven Bernstein first encountered the blind virtuoso New Orleans pianist and singer Henry Butler, he was astonished. "This is it," he recalls thinking. "This is like the music that I always imagined. Everything you ever loved about music, all being in one place. But now it's all coming from one person." Nearly two decades later, Butler and Bernstein finally had the chance to collaborate when they were booked for a run together at New York's Jazz Standard.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
11:47 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

A David Murray Double Bill

David Murray performs at Winter Jazzfest 2015.
John Rogers for NPR

For decades, David Murray was known as one of New York's most monstrously talented and astoundingly prolific artists — a tenor saxophonist who played and wrote for just about every imaginable context. He's still these things, but he lives in Europe now. So this year's Winter Jazzfest — already jam-packed with over 100 acts in two nights — saw fit to give New York audiences a proper saturation of what they'd been missing, presenting David Murray in three completely different sets.

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Song Travels
12:29 pm
Fri January 16, 2015

Melissa Manchester On Song Travels

Melissa Manchester.
Courtesy of the artist

Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Melissa Manchester performed with Bette Midler as "Toots in the Middle" in the original group The Harlettes. Manchester co-wrote and produced a number of hits through the '70s and '80s, and her songs have been recorded by such artists as Barbra Streisand, Alison Krauss and Johnny Mathis.

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Jazz Night In America: The Radio Program
11:57 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Prestige Records' 65th Anniversary Party

Jamison Ross performs at the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Drums Competition in 2012.
Paul Morigi Getty Images for The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz

Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 3:38 pm

Like many a jazz label throughout history, Prestige Records was a small, independent company which happened to document greats: musicians like Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins and Thelonious Monk, among others. Last year marked its 65th anniversary.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
11:46 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Our Point Of View At Le Poisson Rouge

Ambrose Akinmusire (trumpet), Derrick Hodge (bass) and Marcus Strickland (saxophone) of Our Point of View.
David Tallacksen WBGO

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 7:40 pm

Blue Note Records celebrated its 75th anniversary last year, marking three-quarters of a century issuing music by the biggest names in jazz history. The company continues to aspire to that standard, with a contemporary roster ever on the lookout for today's movers and shakers. The supergroup Our Point Of View — the name references a 1963 Herbie Hancock album — combines six of those Blue Note artists for a program of originals and classics heard on Blue Note Records alike.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
11:39 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Butler, Bernstein And The Hot 9 At Jazz Standard

Steven Bernstein (trumpet) and Henry Butler (front row, right) lead the Hot 9.
Stephanie Berger Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed January 21, 2015 10:56 pm

Henry Butler comes from a line of New Orleans piano geniuses, virtuosi who command any style under the syncopated sun. Steven Bernstein comes from a career of collaboration, blowing a slide trumpet all over downtown New York and writing arrangements for just about any medium and context. Both share a love for Jelly Roll Morton and Bessie Smith — Butler grew up in New Orleans, and Bernstein leads the pre-war Millennial Territory Orchestra — and for injecting personal, modern twists into anything they do. And when they met on stage recently, they knew they had to collaborate deeper.

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Jazz Night In America
12:30 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

'Everything Is Cyclical': Christian McBride Looks At 2015 In Jazz

Christian McBride is the host of NPR's Jazz Night In America.
Anna Webber Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 2:55 pm

Christian McBride likely doesn't need much of an introduction. He's a bassist who's worked with everyone from McCoy Tyner to Diana Krall to Paul McCartney.

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A Blog Supreme
1:19 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Winter Jazzfest 2015 In Photos

John Rogers for NPR

Originally published on Mon January 12, 2015 3:08 pm

If you've ever gone to the NYC Winter Jazzfest — specifically, the marathon of overlapping sets in roughly adjacent venues that sometimes lasts more than eight hours per night — you know that you're bombarded with choices. Stay in one theater where it's warm, or graze for three songs and move on? Stand in that slow-moving line, or find a new plan? See one of your favorite musicians, or take a risk on something you've never heard of before? Experimental, deep in-the-pocket, or somewhere in between?

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
12:05 pm
Fri January 9, 2015

Paul Shaffer On Piano Jazz

Paul Shaffer.
Daniel Boczarski Getty Images

Known as the longtime bandleader for NBC's Late Night With David Letterman — and, later, CBS' Late Show — Paul Shaffer first received training in the classics. But, thanks to rock 'n' roll, he grew up to lead what Letterman has called "the world's most dangerous band."

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A Blog Supreme
9:14 am
Thu January 8, 2015

5 Locally Grown Projects At Winter Jazzfest 2015

Eddie Henderson performs three times at the 2015 Winter Jazzfest.
Jimmy Katz Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu January 8, 2015 9:47 am

New York's Winter Jazzfest seems to grow like kudzu: fast and far. This year's installment, the 11th annual, features 500 musicians in styles ranging from gypsy swing to electronic.

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Jazz Night In America: Wednesday Night Webcasts
11:02 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Remembering Marian McPartland: A Celebration

Marian McPartland.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri January 23, 2015 8:38 am

As a pianist and bandleader, Marian McPartland was a decorated jazz artist, recording and performing for well over half a century. At the same time, she was one of the music's great champions, as host of NPR's Piano Jazz for 33 years.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
7:42 am
Fri January 2, 2015

Mimi Fox On Piano Jazz

Mimi Fix
Courtesy of the artist

Guitarist Mimi Fox is in the vanguard of invigorating the jazz guitar tradition. She possesses a pure tone and an amazing set of chops and cooks whether playing bebop or ballads.

Her compositional abilities are evident on this 2006 Piano Jazz as she plays her own tune "Perpetually Hip." With host Marian McPartland on piano and Gary Mazzaroppi on bass, Fox tears up the fret board on "What is This Thing Called Love."

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Toast Of The Nation
2:48 am
Thu January 1, 2015

Toast Of The Nation: Winter Jazzfest 2014

Hypnotic Brass Ensemble performs at Winter Jazzfest 2014.
John Rogers for NPR

For one weekend each January, the epicenter of the New York jazz community is the Winter Jazzfest, a marathon where dozens of bands play a cluster of adjacent downtown venues over two frigid nights. At its peak, lines flow out the doors of clubs to see the famous and obscure alike, often presenting their newest projects for thousands of ticketholders.

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Music News
1:36 pm
Wed December 31, 2014

Ahmad Jamal, 'A Musical Architect Of The Highest Order,' Keeps On Building

At 84, acclaimed jazz pianist Ahmad Jamal is still recording and touring
Karen Michel

Originally published on Wed December 31, 2014 3:48 pm

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