January 25, 2013 Pianist Bill Evans was a giant of jazz piano and one of Marian McPartland's first guests on Piano Jazz in 1979. On this program, the usually quiet and reserved musical genius opens up about his approach and philosophy.
Branford Marsalis (left) and Joey Calderazzo.
Stephen Sheffield/Marsalis Music
June 8, 2011 Inspired by their own album of duets, we asked the jazzmen to name their favorite pairings.
March 15, 2011 St. Patrick's Day is a holiday when everybody is Irish: wearing at least a splash of green, getting together with friends for a pint or a party, and so on. To celebrate the day, here are some jazz songs that wear the green, at least in their titles, as well as musical tributes to Ireland.
NPR Music staffers have put away sun-soaked songs for more reflective, autumnal fare.
October 26, 2010 Hear what we like to call "hoodie jams" — music that makes listeners dig their hands deeper into their pockets on a fall day.
Jim Hall performs at the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival.
Adam Kissick for NPR
December 1, 2009 Hall is in a league of players who've turned the tables for jazz and their respective instruments. As far as modernizing the sound and vocabulary of jazz guitar to the degree he did, longtime admirer and fellow guitarist Rez Abbasi says Hall is unmatched. Abbasi picks five songs, each of which reveals Hall's idiosyncratic technique.
Thanks to fellow bassist Milt Hinton's prodding, Oscar Pettiford moved to New York and became one of bebop's most innovative musicians.
Courtesy of Bethlehem Archives
February 23, 2009 Notes from an unamplified double bass rank among the most beautiful man-made sounds; in jazz, the creator of those notes is always in the middle of the action, charting the harmonic direction of a band and plotting the rhythmic narrative as both an accompanist and a soloist. It's no small task, but here are five musicians who performed the duty with aplomb.
November 10, 2008 Even though there's a stunning array of color in autumn, there's something inherently melancholy about watching the leaves drop. Let these five confessionals prepare you for a season of the high lonesome — a time before a chilly mood meets the rake's progress.
September 8, 2008 In 1982, the UN began observing "Peace Day" every September at the opening of its General Assembly. In 2002, it officially declared Sept. 21 as a permanent date for the International Day of Peace. In preparation, here are five beautiful jazz performances that celebrate the spirit of the occasion.
The Village Vanguard, 1976.
May 5, 2008 For jazz musicians, playing at the Village Vanguard is a special event. To record there is a rite of passage. How can you not bring your best stuff, knowing who brought theirs before? Here are five notable glimpses into the world's most famous jazz joint.
Courtesy of the artist
February 27, 2008 Eliane Elias grew up listening to the music of jazz pianist Bill Evans in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Now an accomplished pianist and singer in her own right, she shares a small selection of her favorite trio, duet, and solo recordings.
Bill Evans continued to perform and record up until his death in 1980.
Tom Copi/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
February 27, 2008 Evans' introspective lyricism and subtle, Western classical flourishes have echoes in a legion of fellow keyboard players. As a leader and composer, he introduced an influential, highly interactive approach to trio and small-group performances.
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February 11, 2008 Valentine's Day is great for lovers, but what about those who have loved and lost? Don't they deserve a Valentine's gift, too? Absolutely. Here are five deliciously heartbreaking songs of love lost by some of the greatest jazz singers of all time. You might be lonely, but you're not alone.
September 5, 2007 Fresh Air's jazz critic reviews two new CD reissues showcasing great jazz pianists: We Three, featuring the Tennessee-born pianist Phineas Newborn, and Everybody Digs Bill Evans. Both were recorded in the fall of 1958.
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February 9, 2006 Fantasy Records releases a new collection of classic recordings from the 1950s and 1960s, called Jazz for Lovers. Musician and critic David Was reviews the collection, and finds some nice surprises.
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December 21, 2005 For lovers of jazz music, the year 2005 brought a wealth of reissues by critical artists from Jelly Roll Morton to John Coltrane. The music, the result of exhaustive archival and restoration work, adds new details to one of America's richest musical traditions.
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