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ypradio.org > YPR Program Guide > Program Listings > Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland

Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland

Mondays 2:06pm

Program Website: http://www.npr.org/programs/pianojazz/

For more than twenty years, legendary pianist Marian McPartland has welcomed a stellar line-up of jazz artists for conversation and improvisation. Fans say the show’s intimate style is “like listening in on a conversation in someone’s living room." A Peabody Award-winning program, Piano Jazz presents a forum for jazz legends andinfluential performers as well as up-and-coming talents, who offer dynamic duets and discuss their lives and music. McPartland has been honored with an NEA American Jazz Master and received the ASCAP Lifetime Achievement Award and the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Award for her contributions to jazz.

March 23
Remembering Marian

Remembering Marian: A Celebration of the Music and Life of Marian McPartland was held on March 20, 2014. On what would have been her ninety-sixth birthday, the Piano Jazz family gathered at 92Y in New York to say goodbye. Hosted by Jon Weber, friends and family celebrated McPartland’s remarkable life in music. Guests featured on the broadcast of this memorial concert include Tony Bennett, Barbara Carroll, Bill Charlap, Michael Feinstein, Chris Brubeck, Jon Faddis, and many more.

March 30
Dardanelle Hadley

Jazz vocalist and pianist Dardanelle Hadley (1917 – 1997) was born Marcia Marie Mullen, the daughter of vocalist/pianist Marcius Mosely “Buck” Mullen. In the 1940s, she formed a trio that played regularly at the Copacabana Club in New York, and she went on to work with jazz greats such as Bucky Pizaarelli and Grady Tate. In this Piano Jazz session from 1984, Hadley shows off her chops on “All the Things You Are” and duets with McPartland on “It’s Delovely.”

April 6
John Pizzarelli
Guitarist and singer John Pizzarelli is one of the hottest jazz acts on the scene today. With his swinging and sophisticated style, he makes music that sounds both classic and modern. He’s the son of jazz guitarist John “Bucky” Pizzarelli, who helped him get his start. On this Piano Jazz from 2001, McPartland and John team up for “I Got Rhythm” and his brother, bassist Martin Pizzarelli, joins in for “It’s Only a Paper Moon.”

April 13
Carmen McRae

Vocalist Carmen McRae (April 8, 1920 – 1994) was an expert of rhythm, deft phrasing, and personal, bittersweet ballads. Her enigmatic, dark contralto voice relied upon the ironic interpretation of lyrics that has placed her among the pantheon of female jazz singers. On this 1985 Piano Jazz, McRae accompanies herself for “As Long as I Live” and joins McPartland to perform “Carmen’s Blues.”

April 20
Henry Mancini

Composer, arranger, and pianist Henry Mancini (1924 – 1994) penned some of the most memorable tunes of the modern era. Throughout his career, he recorded more than 90 albums and won 20 Grammys and four Oscars. To mark what would have been his 91st birthday, we bring you this Piano Jazz from 1985. Mancini shares about his muse (the movie screen) and performs several favorites, including “Days of Wine and Roses.”

April 27
Stanley Cowell

Recorded before a live audience at NPR studios in Washington, DC, Marian McPartland hosted pianist Stanley Cowell for this 1999 Piano Jazz. Known for his brilliant and highly personal approach, Cowell bridges traditional and contemporary styles of jazz. He and McPartland challenge each other in inventive duets, and Cowell performs his famous composition “Euqipoise.”

April May 4
Shirley Horn

Jazz musicians have long admired pianist and vocalist Shirley Horn (1934 – 2005). Her sensitive and relaxed playing style and unique vocals earned her comparisons to fellow jazz greats such as Count Basie and Nat King Cole. In this Piano Jazz session from 1995, Horn brings her unmistakable contralto to a set including “Wouldn’t It Be Lovely” and “End of a Beautiful Friendship.” McPartland performs her original tune “Days of Our Love.”

May 11
Sharon Freeman
In addition to being a lauded pianist, composer, and arranger, Sharon Freeman is an accomplished French horn player. She has worked with many jazz greats, including Gil Evans, Charles Mingus, Lionel Hampton, and Charlie Haden. In 1988, she was McPartland’s guest on Piano Jazz, where she demonstrated her skill as a pianist on standards such as “Body and Soul” and “Heaven,” along with her own composition “Waltz for Achim.”

May 18
Gonzalo Rubalcaba

The music of pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba is a potent mixture of Cuban and American jazz. His style is both melodic and rhythmic, filled with exciting and intriguing influences. He plays everything from jazz to classical as well as music from his native land, Cuba. When he was a guest on Piano Jazz in 1995, he spoke with host McPartland through an interpreter and dazzled with pieces including “Con Alma” and “Straight No Chaser.”

May 25
Lionel Hampton

Vibraphonist Lionel Hampton (1908 – 2002) was one of the most influential figures in the annals of jazz.  He made the vibes a vital voice in the arsenal of jazz instruments and gained international fame playing in Benny Goodman’s small groups and leading his own orchestra. On this 1989 Piano Jazz, Hampton and McPartland duet on a set including “Sweet Georgia Brown” and “Mack the Knife.”

May June 1
Pamela Hines

Pamela Hines is a pianist and composer whose forte is a complex and engaging take on the structural components of music within the jazz form. She brings nuances and impressive technical abilities to all the tunes she plays, and as a composer, she draws out a theme from every musician working with her. In this session from 2000, Hines performs her original tune “Porridge.”

June 8
Doc Cheatham

Trumpeter Adolphus “Doc” Cheatham (1905 – 1997) was known for his admirable technique and tone. His signature slight burr gave his solos an edge, but his approach was warm and elegant. He continued touring late into his life, with some of his best recordings from this later stage. On this 1992 Piano Jazz, Cheatham and McPartland play “Give Me a Kiss to Build a Dream On” and “I Double Dare You.”

June 15
Hazel Scott

Pianist and vocalist Hazel Scott (June 11, 1920 – 1981) was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. A child prodigy, she had a life-long career as a jazz artist on stage and screen, performing late into her life throughout the US and Europe. On this episode of Piano Jazz from 1980, Scott performs a set of standards including tunes by Duke Ellington, George and Ira Gershwin, and Ray Noble, and joins host Marian McPartland for a duet in “Fine and Dandy” and Mary Lou Williams’ “Kool Bongo.”

June 22
Gerry Mulligan

Gerry Mulligan (1927 – 1996) was best known as a baritone saxophonist. He was pivotal in developing the West Coast jazz sound and was featured in big bands for years. He also composed and performed symphonic music and played piano. In this Piano Jazz session from 1987, Mulligan performs his original compositions “Ontet” and “Good Neighbor Thelonious.” He and McPartland wrap up the program with a duet of “Blues Angst.”

June 29
Tierney Sutton

Vocalist Tierney Sutton is one of the hottest jazz artists working today. A six-time Grammy nominee, her album After Blue was nominated for “Best Jazz Vocal Album” in 2015. When Sutton came on Piano Jazz in 2004, she had just released her album Dancing in the Dark, a tribute to Frank Sinatra, which debuted in the Billboard Top Ten. With her accompanist Christian Jacobs, Sutton performs a set of standards, and she and McPartland team up to perform “Last Night When We Were Young.”

 


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