Oliver Jones: A Canadian Jazz Legend Heads Home Oliver Jones may be the most famous living jazz pianist you've never heard of. But in Canada, Oliver Jones is a champion for jazz — adored in his native Quebec and across the country.

Oliver Jones. Michael Slobodian/Michael Slobodian hide caption

toggle caption
Michael Slobodian/Michael Slobodian

Oliver Jones.

Michael Slobodian/Michael Slobodian

Jazz Night In America

Oliver Jones: A Canadian Jazz Legend Heads HomeWBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

Oliver Jones: A Canadian Jazz Legend Heads Home

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/497793760/497806357" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Oliver Jones may be the most famous living jazz pianist you've never heard of. But in Canada, Jones is a hero — adored in his native Quebec and across the country for helping to build a vibrant jazz scene that can sustain the country's top musicians.

A serious talent and a tireless advocate for Canadian jazz, Jones is a champion for local musicians — a folk hero of sorts. You can find his images on the sides of buildings and on his very own postage stamp. He's also a serious talent with charisma and charm that's been winning over fans for years.

This week on Jazz Night In America, we'll introduce you to the 81-year-old ambassador for jazz — a former protege of another great Canadian pianist, Oscar Peterson. Here, Jones sits down with Peterson's daughter to discuss what jazz means to Canada and what Canada means to him.

Jones celebrated his retirement this year with a special sold-out trio performance at the Montreal Jazz festival. Jazz Night was there to bid him farewell.

[+] read more[-] less

More From Jazz

Liz Magnes Courtesy of Liz Magnes hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of Liz Magnes

Liz Magnes On Piano Jazz

Revisit the Israeli jazz pianist's set of classics and originals, featuring a song performed with host Marian McPartland in this 1997 episode.

Liz Magnes On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/580318597/580396172" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Frank Stewart/Jazz At Lincoln Center

Fred Hersch And The Art Of Introspection

WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

We join the pianist at his loft in SoHo to talk about his upbringing in Cincinnati, late-night gigs in New York, his recovery from a coma in 2008, and his adaptation of Walt Whitman's poetry.

Fred Hersch And The Art Of Introspection

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/578894724/579216920" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Massimo Photographe/Courtesy of the artist

Lorraine Desmarais On Piano Jazz

The award-winning jazz artist performs original compositions and a set of standards during this 1991 episode.

Lorraine Desmarais On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/575768260/575921729" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

David Murray performs at Winter Jazzfest 2015. John Rogers for NPR hide caption

toggle caption John Rogers for NPR

A David Murray Double Bill

WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

The monstrously talented and astoundingly prolific tenor saxophonist returned to New York this winter to present a four-clarinet summit and a new trio with Geri Allen and Terri Lyne Carrington.

This year, we bade farewell to avant-garde pioneer Muhal Richard Abrams. Michael Hoefner/Wikipedia hide caption

toggle caption Michael Hoefner/Wikipedia

'Jazz Night In America' Remembers Artists We Lost In 2017

WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

Friends of our program honor a handful of departed artists, celebrating their lives in an episode filled with insight, humor and plenty of music.

'Jazz Night In America' Remembers Artists We Lost In 2017

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/572421441/572633580" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images

Don Pullen On Piano Jazz

The brilliant pianist played church music and R&B before joining Charles Mingus' band and forming his own quartet. He joins Marian McPartland for a song in this 1989 episode.

Don Pullen On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/570834686/570846392" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Claudio Roditi, photographed in 1990. David Redfern/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption David Redfern/Getty Images

Claudio Roditi On Piano Jazz

The versatile trumpeter made his way from Brazil to the New York jazz scene in the 1970s. Hear him perform with host Marian McPartland in this 1996 episode.

Claudio Roditi On Piano Jazz

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/567716375/567717240" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Back To Top