Jazz

2016 has been a time of great loss for music: Prince, David Bowie, Leonard Cohen and Sharon Jones all passed away this year, just to name a few. The jazz world was no exception.

Meredith D'Ambrosio On Piano Jazz

Dec 2, 2016

A sensitive and romantic vocalist and pianist, Meredith D'Ambrosio is a champion of the lesser-known songs of famous composers. She is also respected as a visual artist, composer and teacher. In the late '80s, she met her husband, pianist Eddie Higgins, and the pair went on to record and to perform as a musical duo.

On this 1994 episode of Piano Jazz, D'Ambrosio performs her own songs "Beware Of Spring" and "Give It Time."

Originally broadcast in the fall of 1994.

Set List

  • "Beware Of Spring" (D'Ambrosio)

Lonnie Liston Smith On Piano Jazz

Nov 25, 2016

Lonnie Liston Smith is one of contemporary music's most versatile keyboardists. With a career spanning four decades, Smith has worked as a soloist, bandleader and sideman to greats including Miles Davis, Betty Carter, Max Roach and Pharoah Sanders.

BADBADNOTGOOD knows its name is a little strange. The jazz group's bassist, Chester Hansen, says it invites jokes from nearly everyone the band meets. "It's probably the most punned name I have ever heard," he says.

Nellie Lutcher On Piano Jazz

Nov 18, 2016

Nellie Lutcher (1912 — 2007) started out playing piano at 15, but soon transitioned to singing. She built a career as a prominent jazz vocalist in the 1940s and 1950s with hits like "Fine Brown Frame."

Lutcher joined Marian McPartland for Piano Jazz in 1986. She performs two of her most popular compositions, "Hurry On Down" and "Real Gone Guy." McPartland solos on "Love Is The Sweetest Thing," and the two combine their talents on "I Gotta Right To Sing The Blues."

Richard Sudhalter On Piano Jazz

Nov 11, 2016

Richard Sudhalter (1938 — 2008) was a true Renaissance man of jazz. A top cornetist, he was also a respected critic, author, recording artist and featured guest at major jazz festivals. He co-wrote Bix: Man And Legend, which was nominated for a National Book Award, and in 1983 won a Grammy for his liner notes for Bunny Berigan: Giants Of Jazz.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page.

Sir Roland Hanna On Piano Jazz

Nov 4, 2016

This 2003 Piano Jazz session with guest Sir Roland Hanna (1932 – 2002) was recorded before a live audience at the 2002 Tanglewood Jazz Festival. A subtle and insightful pianist, Hanna was a superb two-piano partner, as evidenced by his and Marian McPartland's performances of "I Get A Kick Out Of You" and "Blues In The Closet." In this session, Hanna uses his solid sense of rhythm as a springboard into exciting explorations of melody and harmony.

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