Jazz

11:21am

Fri December 13, 2013
Concerts

A Jazz Piano Christmas 2013

Originally published on Tue July 1, 2014 3:53 pm

Left to right: Stanley Cowell, Andy Bey, Michele Rosewoman and Sullivan Fortner team up on "Jingle Bells" during A Jazz Piano Christmas.
NPR

Toward the end of every year, NPR Music invites some of the world's best jazz keyboard players to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. We ask them to take on some of their favorite Christmas tunes, solo, and the recording becomes the public radio special A Jazz Piano Christmas.

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3:49pm

Thu December 12, 2013
JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater

Dee Alexander And The Evolution Arkestra On JazzSet

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 9:15 am

Marc PoKempner Courtesy of the artist

The Jazz Institute of Chicago and the city's Park District teamed up in December 2012 to present this free family concert with Dee Alexander. As we air it on JazzSet a year later, Alexander is just back from performing the show in Poland where, she writes, "everyone was on their feet."

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8:03am

Thu December 12, 2013
Best Music Of 2013

Heavy Rotation: Public Radio's Songs Of 2013

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 11:15 am

British songwriter Laura Mvula was a favorite on public radio stations around the country.
Larry Hirshowitz KCRW

This audio is no longer available.

Our friends in the public radio system are some of the most open-minded listeners we know. Each month, our Heavy Rotation series brings you free downloads of what our fellow programmers and producers are experiencing on repeat.

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1:19pm

Wed December 11, 2013
Music Reviews

Ella Fitzgerald's Early Years Collected In A Chick Webb Box Set

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 9:44 am

Ella Fitzgerald sings with bandleader Chick Webb in Asbury Park, N.J., in 1938.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Drummer Chick Webb's 1930s orchestra terrorized competitors in band battles and sent dancers into orbit at Harlem's Savoy Ballroom. They could be similarly explosive on record, but only rarely. Early on, they did have some hot Edgar Sampson arrangements that Benny Goodman would soon turn into hits, like "Blue Lou" and "Don't Be That Way." But the Webb band also had an old-school crooner, Charles Linton, with pre-jazz-age enunciation.

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4:58am

Wed December 11, 2013
A Blog Supreme

Remembering Jim Hall, A Different Sort Of Guitar God

Originally published on Wed December 11, 2013 10:10 am

Jim Hall performs with his trio and fellow guitarist Julian Lage at the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Jim Hall was a guitar god, but not in the sense that he could blaze through a zillion notes a minute. He was worshipped by guitarists around the world, but you'd never know it from talking to him.

"I don't really have all that much technique anyway, so I try to the best with what I have you know," he said to me earlier this year.

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12:01pm

Tue December 10, 2013
A Blog Supreme

O Brothers: Drummers Brian and Brady Blade

Originally published on Tue December 10, 2013 2:04 pm

Brian (left) and Brady Blade.
Megan Holmes/Mary Ellen Matthews Courtesy of the artists

If the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, sometimes two apples will land on similar turf. Brian Blade has been Wayne Shorter's drummer for several years and leads his own project called The Fellowship Band. His older brother Brady Blade is perhaps best known for his drumming with Emmylou Harris and is an all-around music industry mover and shaker.

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4:12pm

Fri December 6, 2013
Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz

Ellen Seeling On Piano Jazz

Ellen Seeling.
Courtesy of the artist

For this 2006 episode of Piano Jazz, trumpeter Ellen Seeling brought her longtime collaborator and the assistant director of the Montclair Women's Big Band, saxophonist Jean Fineberg, as well as New York drummer Allison Miller.

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12:59pm

Thu December 5, 2013
Music Reviews

William Parker's Abstract Grooves Collected In Box Set

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 2:55 pm

William Parker.
Roberto Serra - Iguana Press Getty Images

Steve Lacy used to say that the right partner can help you make music you couldn't get to by yourself. Take the quartet William Parker founded in 2000, for example. Parker's bass tone was always sturdy as a tree trunk, but power drummer Hamid Drake gives him lift. The upshot is that free jazz can swing, too. The quartet's front line is another firm partnership: quicksilver alto saxophonist Rob Brown and flinty trumpeter Lewis Barnes.

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12:34pm

Thu December 5, 2013
A Blog Supreme

Wade In The Water: 5 Jazz Takes On Spirituals

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 4:21 pm

The gospel/folk singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe was accompanied by a jazz orchestra on her debut recording.
Chris Ware Getty Images

3:10pm

Wed December 4, 2013
The Checkout: Live

Patrick Cornelius: Live At Berklee

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 9:18 am

Patrick Cornelius.
Michael Borgida Berklee College of Music

Many jazz musicians write music here and there, but it's still a leap for someone to go from "writing tunes" to taking pride in the art of composition. The alto saxophonist Patrick Cornelius, based in New York for a decade now, is headed that way. After releasing his fourth album, Infinite Blue, earlier this year, he's now set to premiere a new set of compositions for jazz octet. While We're Still Young is a suite based on the illustrated book of children's poems When We Were Very Young, by Winnie-The-Pooh creator A.A.

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