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From NPR Jazz

Wadada Leo Smith finished second in the NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, separated by only 12 points from surprise winner Steve Lehman. Scott Groller/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Scott Groller/Courtesy of the artist

"There was a lot of tears. There was a lot of anguish," Jimmy Greene says of writing Beautiful Life. Jimmy & Dena Katz/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Jimmy & Dena Katz/Courtesy of the artist

Herbie Hancock and Pharrell Williams performed Williams' hit "Happy" at the 2014 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Trumpet Competition. Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz hide caption

itoggle caption Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz

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Charles Gayle was honored with a lifetime achievement award at this year's Vision Festival. On the event's opening night, Gayle performed as his alter ego, Streets the Clown. John Rogers for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption John Rogers for NPR

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

itoggle caption Gail Oskin/Getty Images

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

Camille Thurman (left), Mimi Jones (center) and Shirazette Tinnin all released new albums this week on Hot Tone Music, Jones' record imprint. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the artist

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

itoggle caption Megan Holmes/Mary Ellen Matthews/Courtesy of the artists