A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017 This year, Abelita Mateus, Marcia Ball, Helen Sung and Joanne Brackeen create a toe-tapping meditation on peace and the holidays.
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A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

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A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

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Abelita Mateus, Marcia Ball, Helen Sung and Joanne Brackeen were this year's A Jazz Piano Christmas guests. Jati Lindsay/Courtesy of the Kennedy Center hide caption

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Jati Lindsay/Courtesy of the Kennedy Center

Abelita Mateus, Marcia Ball, Helen Sung and Joanne Brackeen were this year's A Jazz Piano Christmas guests.

Jati Lindsay/Courtesy of the Kennedy Center

What are the holidays without Charlie Brown?

Nowadays, the quietly elegant and celebratory recordings by pianist Vince Guaraldi have become as much a part of the holidays as the sound of unwrapping presents. And every year we are treated to at least one interpretation of that classic Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack by one of the pianists on NPR's A Jazz Piano Christmas. This year is no exception.

In fact, listening to our annual show every from the host podium, it's amazing how the music originally meant for the lovable Peanuts characters has become as integral as other classics.

Our guests this year bear this out: Abelita Mateus, Helen Sung, Marcia Ball and NEA Jazz Master Joanne Brackeen create an intimate and toe-tapping meditation on peace and the holidays with tinges of Brazil (Mateus), Louisiana (Ball), classical music (Sung) and good old-fashioned swing (Brackeen).

Holidays are indeed time for family, tradition and jazz.

Hear The Performances

  • Abelita Mateus

    Abelita Mateus
    Jati Lindsay

    Set List:

    • "The Christmas Song"/"O Tannenbaum"
    • "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas"/"O Little Town Of Bethlehem"

    A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

    • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/570475826/570477511" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Marcia Ball

    Marcia Ball
    Jati Lindsay

    Set List:

    • "I Told Santa Claus" (Fats Domino)
    • "This Time Of Year" (Ray Charles)

    A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

    • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/570475826/570477606" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Helen Sung

    Helen Sung
    Jati Lindsay

    Set List:

    • "Christmas Time Is Here"/"Skating"
    • "Go Tell It On The Mountain"

    A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

    • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/570475826/570477657" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Joanne Brackeen

    Joanne Brackeen
    Jati Lindsay

    Set List:

    • "Winter Green Tea Soy Latte"

    A Jazz Piano Christmas 2017

    • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/570475826/570477731" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">