Eric Dolphy in Copenhagen, 1961.
JP Jazz Archive/Redferns
February 25, 2014 Eric Dolphy's creativity was exploding early in 1964, and he was finding more players who could keep up. Out to Lunch is free and focused, dissonant and catchy, wide open and swinging all at once.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/282508306/282578554" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
Woody Shaw made his first recordings 50 years ago at age 18.
Tom Copi/San Francisco
August 14, 2013 The jazz trumpeter who made his first recordings 50 years ago this summer might be his instrument's least appreciated giant. Perhaps the trumpeter of the 1970s, Shaw was an icon for the generation that followed, as well as an innovator on his horn.
Wayne Shorter's 2003 album Alegria finds the saxophonist and composer matching his quartet with orchestral textures.
Thomas Dorn/Verve Records
June 25, 2012 Bassist Matt Ulery, whose new album displays an affinity for strings, picks some of his favorite mergers of classical and folk music with the blues. Hear songs from Brad Mehldau, Chico Hamilton, Dave Douglas, Anne Mette Iversen and Wayne Shorter.
Agalloch and Ludicra drummer Aesop Dekker says he thinks Bobby Hutcherson is a sorcerer.
Ross Sewage/Courtesy of Profound Lore
February 1, 2011 Dekker plays drums in the innovative black-metal bands Agalloch and Ludicra, but says that before he'd ever heard Kiss, "there was only Coltrane." Find out which Mingus album he calls a "Lovecraftian noir soundtrack" and more with Dekker's favorite five jazz records.
February 8, 2010 Out 'n' In, the latest album from Empirical, is a tribute to the late musician Eric Dolphy. The record contains six original pieces that adopt Dolphy's style and adaptations of two songs from his album Out to Lunch!
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/123494898/123496402" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
A collage of records.
April 30, 2009 At the record store, Tom Cole spent most of his time warding off scornful looks as he toted Mothers of Invention LPs around. One day, he decided he needed to learn about jazz. A clerk at Discount Records and Books in Washington, D.C., suggested these five records. No standards; just his absolute favorites.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/103328551/103646627" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
There's more to jazz flute than Anchorman's Ron Burgundy.
Courtesy of Dreamworks SKG
December 2, 2008 The flute is one of the oldest known instruments, but it gets little respect. It's mostly known for schmaltzy concert recordings and one particular comedic movie reference. Luckily, the sheer virtuosic force of many jazz artists has lent a cool factor to the much-maligned instrument. Here are five of jazz's best flutists in action.
August 1, 2001 Avant-garde and sometimes controversial, Eric Dolphy was a master of several instruments. He was one of the first musicians to record unaccompanied horn solos, and largely introduced the bass clarinet as a solo instrument. On this 1964 album, Dolphy displays his talents on flute, alto saxophone, and bass clarinet.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/4555368/151217323" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
NPR thanks our sponsors
Become an NPR sponsor