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Jayne Cortez in 1996. The poet often recorded her poems to improvised music.

Read 5 Points Where Poetry Meets Jazz

April 11, 2014 – Hear a sampling of collisions between the written word and the improvised solo.

Donny Hathaway remains widely admired in jazz, but much of his repertoire has yet to be tapped by improvisers.

Read 5 Donny Hathaway Covers By Jazz Musicians

January 17, 2014 – The singer remains influential in jazz, but improvisers have yet to fully mine his repertoire.

Lionel Loueke (left) and Miguel Zenon (right) join Jeff Ballard in the drummer's rhythm-oriented trio.

Read 5 Must-See Projects At Winter Jazzfest WBGO

January 8, 2014 – In 2014, the New York music marathon includes new works from Jeff Ballard, Tillery and Aruán Ortiz. WBGO

The gospel/folk singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe was accompanied by a jazz orchestra on her debut recording.

Read Wade In The Water: 5 Jazz Takes On Spirituals WFIU

December 5, 2013 – The African-American folk songs, a byproduct of slavery, were later embraced by many improvisers. WFIU

Keyboardist and producer Bob James' 1970s work helped to establish the sound of smooth jazz — and lives on in hip-hop samples galore.

Read Five Songs By The 'Rhodes Scholar' Keyboardist Of Hip-Hop

October 17, 2013 – Bob James' proto-smooth jazz featured infectious melodies and riffs — as rap producers know well.

In a conversation aired on WBGO, Jessye Norman credits the study of jazz with her understanding of song interpretation.

Read Opera Star Jessye Norman Picks Her Favorite Jazz Singers WBGO

September 20, 2013 – The soprano tells WBGO that studying jazz vocalists influenced the way she interprets songs. WBGO

Monty Alexander (left) and Ernest Ranglin are known for their fluency in both jazz and Jamaican popular music.

Read Jazz With A Jamaican Accent KMHD

August 30, 2013 – For late summer, here are five songs inspired by the island's characteristic riddims. KMHD

Woody Shaw made his first recordings 50 years ago at age 18.

Read Woody Shaw: The Last Great Trumpet Innovator

August 14, 2013 – An icon for the generation that followed him, Shaw was the jazz trumpeter of the 1970s.

Dee Alexander is among the artists leading a band for the first time at the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival.

Read 5 To Watch: Newport Jazz Festival Debuts

July 31, 2013 – The granddaddy of jazz festivals has branched out in recent years in search of new names.

Louis Armstrong spoke out against the federal government regarding racial issues, but happily played the National Anthem at Newport in 1960.

Read Patriotism And Protest: Jazz For July 4

July 4, 2013 – Improvised takes on American patriotic songs range from the reverent to the ironic.

Caravan Palace.

Read Oui Et Oui: Montreal Jazz's French Connection WBGO

June 27, 2013 – Canada's grandest music event props up the city's elite French and Francophone musicians. WBGO

Duke Ellington rehearses for a 1973 concert in London's Westminster Abbey.

Read Duke Ellington: Highlights Of His Twilight WFIU

May 23, 2013 – After writing partner Billy Strayhorn died, the great composer experienced a burst of productivity. WFIU

Woody Herman in 1946.

Read Woody Herman At 100: 'A Blues Player From His Heart'

May 16, 2013 – A reedman, talent scout and bandleader, Herman led "Herds" that were both popular and respected.

Jimmy Hamilton (left) and Harry Carney were among the reedmen who played clarinet for the Duke Ellington Orchestra.

Read 'A Strict Taskmaster': 5 Ways To Play The Jazz Clarinet

May 9, 2013 – Ben Goldberg picks five legends, from legends to the present, who worked with the difficult horn.

Turkish-German vocalist Esra Dalfidan sings in several languages with her band FIDAN.

Read Jazzahead! Highlights: 5 New Bands From Europe WBGO

April 26, 2013 – More than 20,000 jazz fans and industry types descend upon Bremen's discovery-intensive festival. WBGO

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