Walter Smith III: Live In Concert The tenor saxophonist plays in some of the most talked-about jazz groups of today. Freshly signed to a new record deal, Smith draws the leadership role in presenting his own quintet at his alma mater.

The Checkout: Live

Walter Smith III: Live At BerkleeWBGO

Walter Smith III In Concert (Full Audio)

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/173010484/173772972" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

If you've put an ear to some of the most talked-about jazz bands of the last few years, you've likely heard saxophonist Walter Smith III. He's kept the tenor chair in the Ambrose Akinmusire quintet, the Terence Blanchard quintet and Eric Harland's Voyager band, as well as the new NEXT Collective cover-band supergroup. In there, he's found time for his own bands, and recently signed a contract with Concord Records to document one of them. Here, he gathers an ensemble of mostly peers to show off the material he's been developing.

The Houston native returns to his alma mater, Berklee College of Music, for this installment of The Checkout: Live. WBGO and NPR Music presented a live radio broadcast and video webcast of the Walter Smith III quintet at Boston's Cafe 939. For the full concert archive of this series, visit npr.org/checkoutlive.

Set List

All compositions by Walter Smith III unless otherwise noted.

  • "Apollo"
  • "[Title]"
  • "July"
  • "Aubade" (Jason Moran/Andrew Hill)
  • "Fing Fast" [video highlight]

Personnel

  • Walter Smith III, tenor
  • Matt Stevens, guitar
  • Taylor Eigsti, piano
  • Harish Raghavan, bass
  • Clarence Penn, drums

Credits

Producer and Host: Josh Jackson; Audio Engineer: David Tallacksen. Recorded March. 7, 2013 at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mass. Photo courtesy of Michael Borgida/Berklee College of Music.

[+] read more[-] less

More From Jazz

Barbara Cook performs at the 2014 New York Festival of Song at Carnegie Hall on April 28, 2014 in New York City. Laura Cavanaugh/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Laura Cavanaugh/Getty Images

Barbara Cook On Piano Jazz

This week's Piano Jazz from 1998 remembers lyric soprano Barbara Cook, a Broadway star, staple of the New York cabaret scene and favorite of audiences around the world.

Barbara Cook On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/614380119/614428595" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

American jazz trumpeter Harry 'Sweets' Edison performs in 1991. David Redfern/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption David Redfern/Getty Images

Harry 'Sweets' Edison On Piano Jazz

On this episode of Piano Jazz from 1999, broadcast just months before Edison died, the legendary jazz trumpeter joins Marian McPartland for a few classics and an original.

Harry 'Sweets' Edison On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/612283249/612285662" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
George Kopp/Courtesy of the artist

Virginia Mayhew On Piano Jazz

Saxophonist, composer and bandleader Virginia Mayhew joins forces with Marian McPartland to perform "All the Things You Are" and "Body and Soul" on this 1998 episode of Piano Jazz.

Virginia Mayhew On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/610083723/610086310" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Joanne Brackeen and Jason Moran at NPR's Studio One in Washington, D.C. Eric Lee/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Eric Lee/NPR

Jazz Giants Take The Stage At The NEA Jazz Masters Listening Party

WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

Jason Moran sat down with the NEA Jazz Masters to talk about their careers and listen to music that played important roles in their lives.

Jazz Giants Take The Stage At The NEA Jazz Masters Listening Party

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/608093895/608239849" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

This 1988 episode of Piano Jazz features Brazilian pianist, composer, and vocalist Eliane Elias. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of the artist

Eliane Elias On Piano Jazz

Brazilian pianist, composer, and vocalist Eliane Elias is a renowned artist in her home country and in the American jazz scene. Hear her first Piano Jazz performance from 1988.

Eliane Elias On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/607421826/607450646" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Willie Pickens On Piano Jazz

Chicago jazz mainstay Willie Pickens died this past December at age 86. Revisit his performance with McPartland in this 1997 episode of Piano Jazz.

Willie Pickens On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/604342537/604343909" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Cleo Brown on the cover of Here Comes Cleo. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of the artist

Cleo Brown On Piano Jazz

Cleo Brown makes a rare appearance to perform her greatest hit, "Pinetop's Boogie-Woogie," and to recall the style's heyday in the 1930s.

Cleo Brown On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/602133644/602133663" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

The 2018 NEA Jazz Masters Tribute Concert

WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

Dianne Reeves, Pat Metheny, Joanne Brackeen and Todd Barkan are recipients of the 2018 Jazz Masters award — the highest honor the U.S. gives to a jazz musician or advocate.

Gus Bennett, Jr./Courtesy of the artist

Nicholas Payton On Piano Jazz

The trumpet prodigy learned how to improv from fellow New Orleans native Wynton Marsalis. Payton was only in his 20s when he visited with McPartland for this 1998 episode.

Nicholas Payton On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/598825823/600192516" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Back To Top