The 2014 Jazz At Lincoln Center Gala Concert

Billy Crystal hosts Love, Loss and Laughter: The Story of Jazz — a tour of the music's history in song and dance, featuring an all-star lineup and the JALC Orchestra led by Wynton Marsalis.

Wynton Marsalis leads the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra in concert. Brad Barket/Getty Images hide caption

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Remembering Armando Peraza, An Afro-Cuban Percussion Giant

It's hard to imagine a musical career that included musicians as varied as Charlie Parker and Carlos Santana. But such was the resumé of Armando Peraza after almost 70 years of making music.

Armando Peraza, center, was a key member of Santana for nearly three decades. Bruno Marzi/Splash News/Corbis hide caption

itoggle caption Bruno Marzi/Splash News/Corbis

How Japan Came To Love Jazz

With this year's International Jazz Day concert taking place in Osaka, an East Asian historian (a musician himself) describes how the music came across the Pacific — and how it took off after that.

U.S. servicemen and their Japanese partners dance to jazz tunes in the newly opened Tokyo nightclub Oasis of the Ginza, circa 1945. Keystone/Getty Images hide caption

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The Art Of Cool: 5 Bands At The Borders Of Jazz

This weekend's Art of Cool Festival in Durham, N.C., aims to expand the audience for improvised music. So it's booked performers from modern R&B, hip-hop and beyond with deep jazz influences.

The vocal trio KING features production from Paris Strother, a jazz-trained pianist. Alyssa Tumino/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Alyssa Tumino/Courtesy of the artist

The History Of Jazz Piano In 11 Minutes

Even today's musicians know that jazz has a rapidly changing, living, breathing history. In a new video, young gun Kris Bowers takes a YouTube tour from ragtime and stride through the present day.

Evidently, pianist Kris Bowers' bookshelf includes James Baldwin's uncollected writings and Robin Kelley's biography of Thelonious Monk. Janette Beckman/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Janette Beckman/Courtesy of the artist

13 Jazz Artists Awarded Over $1.7 Million

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation has announced recipients of its 2014 performing arts grants. Noted composers such as Roscoe Mitchell, Oliver Lake and Randy Weston received a first tier award.

Roscoe Mitchell is one of six jazz musicians awarded the Doris Duke Artist Award for 2014. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Why Metallica's Bassist Is Producing A Jazz Documentary

GPBMetal superstar Robert Trujillo never spoke with the late Jaco Pastorius. But Trujillo is funding a film and a new compilation of demo recordings from his personal bass guitar hero.

The late virtuoso bassist Jaco Pastorius enjoyed only a relatively brief career, but was influential to musicians across genres. Courtesy of JPI hide caption

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Jazz Journalists Association Recognizes Its Musicians Of The Year

Longtime friends and collaborators Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter headline the numerous performing artists, ensembles and recordings awarded for achievement in the year 2013.

Herbie Hancock speaks at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences Induction Ceremony 2013 at Harvard University. The JJA awarded the pianist with a Lifetime Achievement Award on Tuesday. Gail Oskin/Getty Images hide caption

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5 Points Where Poetry Meets Jazz

Structured and free, sonic and rhythmic, poems and jazz music seem like natural partners. For National Poetry Month and Jazz Appreciation Month, here are some notable collisions between the two.

Jayne Cortez in 1996. The poet often recorded her poems to improvised music. Bob Berg/Getty Images hide caption

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Wayne Henderson, Jazz Crusaders Co-Founder, Dies

The trombonist and three fellow musicians from Houston started one of jazz's most popular groups in the 1960s. As the times changed, so did their music — and their success magnified further.

The late Wayne Henderson toured with an incarnation of The Crusaders in 1995. Simon Ritter/Redferns/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Simon Ritter/Redferns/Getty Images

A Guitarist Starts Anew, Except For This Old Song

Matthew Stevens has mostly moved on from his shelved debut recording — but one tune remains in rotation. He explains how Tony Williams and a certain pop hit influenced his unconventional "Emergence."

Matthew Stevens will record his debut album this year. Maximilian Motel/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Maximilian Motel/Courtesy of the artist

'A Love Supreme' Comes Alive In Unearthed Photos

The great jazz photographer Chuck Stewart recently found six rolls of 50-year-old film in his archive. They contained previously unpublished shots of John Coltrane recording his masterpiece.

John Coltrane during the recording of A Love Supreme in December 1964. Chuck Stewart/Courtesy of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History hide caption

itoggle caption Chuck Stewart/Courtesy of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History

Possessed By Joy: A North American Drummer In Cuba

In January, Harris Eisenstadt spent two weeks studying percussion in Matanzas and Havana. Here's what he gained from the experience.

Eleggua shrines in Matanzas, Cuba. Harris Eisenstadt for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Harris Eisenstadt for NPR

Rail, Radio And Booze: A Look At Montreal Jazz History

Thanks to prohibition and trains, the Canadian city became known as a nightlife capital. A web documentary traces how Oscar Peterson and others emerged from the black neighborhood of Little Burgundy.

Pianist Oscar Peterson was the biggest name to emerge from the golden age of jazz in Montreal. Bettmann/CORBIS hide caption

itoggle caption Bettmann/CORBIS

After 18 Years Of Marriage And Two Children, A Couple Releases Their Debut Albums

Growing up in Denver, Rudy and Shamie Royston dreamed about moving to a jazz hub like New York. After a few welcome delays to teach and raise a family, they're beginning to pursue careers as performing musicians.

Shamie Royston (left) and Rudy Royston, married for nearly two decades, have recently issued their own debut albums as bandleaders. Mike Molaire/John Rogers for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Mike Molaire/John Rogers for NPR