Take Five: A Weekly Jazz Sampler : A Blog Supreme Get to know jazz, five songs at a time.

A Blog Supreme

From NPR Jazz

Take Five: A Weekly Jazz Sampler

Following her conversion to Catholicism, pianist Mary Lou Williams began to compose and record religious music. William Gottlieb/Library of Congress hide caption

toggle caption
William Gottlieb/Library of Congress

Nina Simone's voice may have had a limited range, but its unique power and melancholy made for a legendary effect when paired with her genre-crossing piano. Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Getty Images

Wynton Marsalis leads a group of musicians through upper Manhattan's Riverside Church for the New Orleans-style funeral of vibraphonist Lionel Hampton in 2002. Doug Kanter/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Doug Kanter/AFP/Getty Images

James Brandon Lewis' second album, Divine Travels, came out in early February. Ingrid Hertfelder/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Ingrid Hertfelder/Courtesy of the artist

Donny Hathaway remains widely admired in jazz, but much of his repertoire has yet to be tapped by improvisers. Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Lionel Loueke (left) and Miguel Zenon (right) join Jeff Ballard in the drummer's rhythm-oriented trio. Andrea Boccalini/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Andrea Boccalini/Courtesy of the artist

The gospel/folk singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe was accompanied by a jazz orchestra on her debut recording. Chris Ware/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Chris Ware/Getty Images

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

toggle caption
Courtesy of the artist

In a conversation aired on WBGO, Jessye Norman credits the study of jazz with her understanding of song interpretation. Carol Friedman/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Carol Friedman/Courtesy of the artist

Monty Alexander (left) and Ernest Ranglin are known for their fluency in both jazz and Jamaican popular music. Peter Dean Rickards/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Peter Dean Rickards/Courtesy of the artist

Dee Alexander is among the artists leading a band for the first time at the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of the artist