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Bill Frisell

Bill Frisell 200
Jimmy Katz

The former "house guitarist" for pioneering German modern jazz label ECM, Frisell has worked with artists as varied as Elvis Costello, John Zorn and classical composer Gavin Bryars.

Concerts

Jason Moran (left), Alicia Hall Moran (center), The Bandwagon and Bill Frisell (right) perform at the KC Jazz Club.

February 6, 2014 The composer and pianist ushers in his era as Artistic Advisor for Jazz at the Kennedy Center.

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Bill Frisell plays John Lennon songs on the Fort Stage at the Newport Jazz Festival.

December 5, 2013 Hear the guitarist in three Newport settings, from a John Lennon tribute to a set by The Bad Plus.

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Pianist Ethan Iverson of The Bad Plus performs at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival.

August 8, 2012 A piano trio sui generis meets one of its heroes, a guitarist down for anything.

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Violinist Jenny Scheinman performs at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival.

August 5, 2012 The flexible, long-time collaborators perform alone together on stage, thinking on their feet.

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Bill Frisell performs at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival.

August 4, 2012 With his inventive arrangements, the guitarist doesn't hide his love away for classic Beatles tunes.

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Mingus Big Band

April 22, 2010 It's a big, bigger, biggest show with Joanne Brackeen, Ron Miles' Quartet and the Mingus Big Band.

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From left to right: Kenny Wollesen, Bill Frisell and Tony Scherr.

March 17, 2011 Frisell straps on his trusty Fender Telecaster at the Kennedy Center with his flexible trio.

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March 19, 2009 The jazz trumpeter leads an all-star set with legendary guitarist Bill Frisell.

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Paul Motian and Joe Lovano

September 3, 2008 All three towering figures of modern jazz have played together for more than 25 years.

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Studio Sessions

Bill Frisell.

February 1, 2013 The guitarist plays with expansiveness and a feel for the wide-open space between notes.

Interviews & Profiles

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June 2, 2005 With her newest CD, soprano Renée Fleming makes a leap from opera to jazz.

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March 6, 2005 Petra Haden offers an a cappella version of The Who Sell Out.

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Discover Songs

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July 20, 2009 Hear new music from The Monsters of Folk, Jim James, The Tallest Man on Earth, and more.

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July 13, 2009 The work of an eccentric portrait photographer, imagined for a 21st-century string band.

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February 28, 2008 The band plays noir-Americana like outlaw jazz improvisers on their way to collect a bounty.

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October 2, 2007 In Floratone's "The Passenger," Bill Frisell's tremolo-intensive guitar sits front and center.

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December 20, 2006 Tom Moon looks at this year's under-appreciated gems: the Shadow Classics of the future.

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March 6, 2005 NPR's Ned Wharton looks at a pair of CDs designed to be appreciated with visual components.

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March 3, 2003 The latest invention from Bill Frisell; the experimental folk of Calexico; a mysterious soundtra...

September 11, 2001 As NPR covered the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington DC, it was music that gave liste...

January 1, 2000 Gustavo Santaolalla, Giovanni De Chiaro, Medeski Martin and Wood, Knut Hamre and Steve Tibbetts,...

Reviews

Buster Keaton in 'Go West'

January 8, 2010 Kevin Whitehead says there are more great jazz DVDs than anyone can follow. We'll try anyway.

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July 20, 2009 Hear new music from The Monsters of Folk, Jim James, The Tallest Man on Earth, and more.

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February 28, 2008 The band plays noir-Americana like outlaw jazz improvisers on their way to collect a bounty.

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October 2, 2007 In Floratone's "The Passenger," Bill Frisell's tremolo-intensive guitar sits front and center.

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June 2, 2005 With her newest CD, soprano Renée Fleming makes a leap from opera to jazz.

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March 6, 2005 NPR's Ned Wharton looks at a pair of CDs designed to be appreciated with visual components.

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More Stories

Hank Williams has written plenty of tunes covered by jazz artists over the years.

August 17, 2012 If you haven't heard his music in a while, you might have forgotten: The country pioneer had swing.

Bill Frisell plays a Tiny Desk Concert at the NPR Music offices on December 16, 2011.

February 3, 2012 The brilliant and nimble guitarist reinvents the songs of John Lennon at the NPR Music offices.

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NPR Artist Directory

Chopin

Frederic Chopin

Hear Chopin's music in performance and perspective.

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Gillian Welch

Gillian Welch

Enjoy archival interviews and performances from the folk revivalist.

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Spoon

Spoon

Music, live concerts and interviews with the pop-rock band.

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Rodrigo y Gabriela

Rodrigo y Gabriela

Hear and watch exclusive performances from the guitar-playing Mexican duo.

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Bon Iver

Bon Iver

Hear concerts and interviews with the atmospheric art-folk singer.

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Charles Mingus

Charles Mingus

Hear performances and profiles of the jazz innovator's work.

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Emerson String Quartet

Emerson String Quartet

Hear essential recordings and performances from the lauded quartet.

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Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

NPR Music explores the life and voice of the passionate Qawwali singer.

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Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Exclusive performances from the pop duo from Baltimore.

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M.I.A.

M.I.A.

Music and news from the Sri Lanka-born hip-hop artist and producer.

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Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire

Hear concerts and interviews with the grandiose art-rock band.

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The Willies

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  • Album: The Willies
  • Artist: Bill Frisell
  • Label: Nonesuch
 

Haunted Heart

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  • Album: Haunted Heart
  • Artist: Renée Fleming
  • Label: Decca
  • Released: 2005
 

Petra Haden Sings: The Who Sell Out

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  • Album: Petra Haden Sings: The Who Sell Out
  • Artist: Petra Haden
  • Released: 2005
 

Petra Haden and Bill Frisell

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  • Album: Petra Haden and Bill Frisell
  • Artist: Petra Haden and Bill Frisell
  • Released: 2005
 

Blankets: Recordings for the Illustrated Novel

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  • Album: Blankets: Recordings for the Illustrated Novel
  • Artist: Tracker
  • Label: Film Guerrero
  • Released: 2004
 

RICHTER 858

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  • Album: RICHTER 858
  • Artist: Bill Frisell
  • Label: Songlines
  • Released: 2005
 

Disfarmer

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  • Album: Disfarmer
  • Artist: Bill Frisell
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Released: 2009
 

Stoa

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  • Album: Stoa
  • Artist: Nik Bartsch's Ronin
 

Boulevard de L'independence

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  • Album: Boulevard de L'independence
  • Artist: Toumani Diabate's Symmetric Orchestra
 

The Eraser

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  • Album: The Eraser
  • Artist: Thom Yorke
 

Son

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  • Artist: Juana Molina
 

Bach and Beyond

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  • Album: Bach and Beyond
  • Artist: Gabriela Montero
 

II

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  • Album: II
  • Artist: Espers
 

Bill Frisell, Ron Carter, Paul Motian

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  • Artist: Bill Frisell, Ron Carter, Paul Motian
 

All This Time

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  • Album: All This Time
  • Artist: Heartless Bastards
 

Donuts

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  • Artist: J Dilla
 

The Body The Blood The Machine

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  • Album: The Body The Blood The Machine
  • Artist: The Thermals
 

Ways Not To Lose

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  • Album: Ways Not To Lose
  • Artist: The Wood Brothers
 

II

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  • Album: II
  • Artist: Espers
  • Label: Spunk
  • Released: 2006
 

I Have the Room Above Her

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  • Album: I Have the Room Above Her
  • Artist: Paul Motian/Bill Frisell/Joe Lovano
  • Label: ECM
 

Time and Time Again

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  • Album: Time and Time Again
  • Artist: Paul Motian/Bill Frisell/Joe Lovano
  • Label: ECM
  • Released: 2007
 

Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull

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  • Album: Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull
  • Artist: Earth
  • Label: Southern Lord
  • Released: 2008
 

Floratone

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  • Album: Floratone
  • Artist: Floratone