Arts and Entertainment

Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
2:54 pm
Wed August 21, 2013

Twilight World: Remembering Marian McPartland's Songs

Of Marian McPartland's "Twilight World," the great singer Tony Bennett once said, "Well, that song will last forever. It's a beautiful song."
David Redfern Redferns

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 4:51 pm

Jazz musicians strive for an individual voice. If a listener can tell right away who's playing, that's an achievement. The same is true of composers — and after only a few measures of music, you know it's Marian McPartland. The pianist and host of Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz died Tuesday night at her home in Long Island, N.Y. She was 95.

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Theater
10:55 am
Wed August 21, 2013

Playwright August Wilson In 'Another League'

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

I'm Celeste Headlee and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Pulitzer prize-winning playwright August Wilson may be best known for a 10 play series of dramas that explore black life in America, one for each decade of the 20th century. The series includes plays like "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom," "The Piano Lesson" and of course, perhaps Wilson's best-known work "Fences."

(SOUNDBITE OF PLAY, "FENCES")

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Music Reviews
10:19 am
Wed August 21, 2013

'Beauty' On Orrin Evans' Block

Orrin Evans.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 11:10 am

On Philadelphia pianist Orrin Evans' trio version of Ornette Coleman's "Blues Connotation," drummer Donald Edwards and bassist Eric Revis set a New Orleans second-line groove tinged with vintage hip-hop. A beat like that is catnip to Evans, who gets right down and rolls in it.

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The Record
6:28 am
Wed August 21, 2013

Marian McPartland, 'Piano Jazz' Host, Has Died

Marian McPartland.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 3:23 pm

Marian McPartland, who gave the world an intimate, insider's perspective on one of the most elusive topics in music — jazz improvisation — died of natural causes Tuesday night at her home in Long Island, N.Y. She was 95.

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Kitchen Window
11:03 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Getting Past Pesto To Re-Imagine Basil

Serri Graslie for NPR

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 12:06 pm

Basil is a mega-celebrity of the herb world and has some of the same problems that come with fame. Known mostly for its starring role in pesto, it's recognized by many people primarily as an ingredient in other Italian dishes such as pastas and caprese salads. But if it were up to basil, it might prefer to be recognized for its work in lesser-known cuisines and recipes (the indie films and off-Broadway plays, if you will), where it shines in a different way and brings a new dimension to food.

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Music Reviews
12:56 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

'Looking For The Next One' Reveals An Underappreciated Sax Trio

John Surman, Mike Osborne and Alan Skidmore were all saxophonists and teamed up in 1973 to form the short-lived trio S.O.S.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 7:46 pm

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Music
11:06 am
Tue August 20, 2013

From Cuba To America, Arturo Sandoval Is An Ambassador For Jazz

Arturo Sandoval and Dizzy Gillespie perform.
Concord Music Group

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 3:17 pm

Cuban-born trumpeter Arturo Sandoval is set to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom later this year for his contributions to the world of music. He's won nine Grammy awards and an Emmy. He's also collaborated with legends like Frank Sinatra and Johnny Mathis, and contemporary stars such as Justin Timberlake and Alicia Keys.

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The Record
4:57 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Albert Murray, Writer And Co-Founder Of Jazz At Lincoln Center, Dies

Writer, historian and critic Albert Murray in New York City in 2000.
Chris Felver Getty Images

Albert Murray, the influential writer and critic who helped found Jazz at Lincoln Center, died Sunday at home in Harlem. He was 97 years old. Duke Ellington once described him as the "unsquarest person I know."

For Murray, jazz and blues were more than just musical forms. They were a survival technique — an improvisatory response to hardship and uncertainty, as he told NPR in 1997: "You don't know how many bars you have, but however many of them you can make swing, the better off you are. That's about it."

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A Blog Supreme
4:16 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Jazz Piano Giant Cedar Walton Dies At 79

Cedar Walton in 2008.
John Rogers for NPR johnrogersnyc.com

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 11:48 pm

Cedar Walton, one of the top jazz pianists to emerge in the aftermath of bebop, died Monday morning at his home in Brooklyn, N.Y., according to his wife, Martha. Walton was 79.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
2:44 pm
Fri August 16, 2013

Lee Konitz On Piano Jazz

Lee Konitz.
Bob Travis Courtesy of the artist

On this episode of Piano Jazz, alto saxophonist Lee Konitz stops by to present a master class in improvisation on the standards. Konitz and host Marian McPartland get together for a set that includes "Stella By Starlight," "Body & Soul" and "All the Things You Are."

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