Jazz

Jazz & Blues
8:27 am
Wed August 21, 2013

Celebrating the Life and Art of Marian McPartland

Marian McPartland smiles while playing the piano during a celebration of her 90th birthday at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York on March 19, 2008.
Seth Wenig AP

Update: Marian McPartland died of natural causes Tuesday night at her home in Long Island, N.Y. As a remembrance, we are rerunning this piece, which first ran in October 2012. 

A new book chronicles the life and illustrious career of jazz piano legend Marian McPartland. She's known for her role as host of Piano Jazz on NPR for more than three decades, but her fans have known little else about Marian McPartland. Until now.

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Vote Now!
3:19 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

50 Great Jazz Vocals: What songs should make the list?

Click on the link below to cast your vote!

We are putting together a list of the 50 Quintessential Jazz Vocals of All Time. 

According to who? Well, according to you!  

This is your chance to cast your vote for the songs you think should be on a 'best-of'' jazz vocals list. Vote for up to three songs, and please include the song title and artist's name. 

After we compile the results, the quintessential 50 will be available for streaming on Jazz24.org and KPLU.org.

VOTE NOW!

16th Annual Christmas Jam
4:19 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

The 2012 KPLU Christmas Jam featuring Pearl Django

Pearl Django performing with the PLU Jazz Ensemble on December 6, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the 16th Annual KPLU Christmas Jam

KPLU’s much-anticipated free holiday concert, featured guest artists, Gypsy-Jazz masters Pearl Django live from Lagerquist Hall in the Mary Baker Russell Music Center on the Pacific Lutheran University campus. 

Pearl Django performed Christmas selections with the University Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Dr. David Deacon-Joyner. The event, hosted by Nick Morrison, can be listened to in its entirety above, and will also re-broadcast on KPLU Christmas Day from 2 p.m. - 3 p.m.

KPLU Studio Sessions
10:49 am
Mon December 10, 2012

Graham Dechter: Youth steeped in tradition

Graham Dechter performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full performance & interview

Graham Dechter is a 26-year-old jazz guitarist who is, indeed, currently living his dream. 

Graham was invited to join the world-famous Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra at age 19. Now, 7 years later, he is leading his own group and just released his second CD, “Takin' It There.”  

Here is a video of the quartet performing the title track, "Takin' It There" live in our studios: 

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Jazz
4:34 pm
Wed December 5, 2012

Passing of Dave Brubeck leaves impact on many

Jazz pianist Dave Brubeck, responsible for the recording of the seminal album Time Out which still ranks as one of the best selling albums of all-time, and the first jazz musician to have a single sell 1 millions albums, died this morning of heart failure. He was 91.

In 1951, he formed the Dave Brubeck Quartet, and made a regular habit of touring and and performing at college campuses, bringing his musical approach to a younger audience. In 1954, Brubeck became only the second musician at that time to appear on the cover of Time Magazine.

The career that Brubeck sustained had an enormous impact on musicians and fans.

Read More on Groove Notes

Jazz & Blues
10:48 am
Wed December 5, 2012

Remembering The Vital Force Of Jazz Pianist Dave Brubeck

Dave Brubeck performing on the pilot episode of a television program in 1965.
CBS Photo Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed December 5, 2012 3:34 pm

To listen to Neda Ulaby's appreciation of Dave Brubeck's life and career, as heard on All Things Considered, click the audio link.

For millions of Americans who came of age in the 1950s, Dave Brubeck was jazz. His performances on college campuses, Top 40 radio play, his role as a jazz ambassador for the U.S., his picture on the cover of Time magazine — all made him one of the most recognized and recognizable musicians of the era.

He died Wednesday morning, the day before his 92nd birthday, in Norwalk, Conn. The cause was heart failure.

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Jazz
9:01 am
Wed December 5, 2012

Jazz legend Dave Brubeck has died

Brubeck performing in Hamburg, Germany circa 1972.
Wikimedia Commons

Jazz icon Dave Brubeck has died this morning in a Connecticut hospital one day short of his 92nd birthday. 

Long-time manager-producer-conductor Russell Gloyd told The Chicago Tribune that Brubeck died of heart failure en route to "a regular treatment with his cardiologist." 

Brubeck attained pop-star status over the course of his long career with songs such as "Blue Rondo a la Turk" and "Take Five" (which easily secured the #1 spot on our Jazz 100 list).

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Jazz Northwest
3:00 pm
Sun November 18, 2012

Lorraine Feather featured on Jazz Northwest

Lorraine Feather

Listen to Jazz Northwest
"Lorraine Feather was born in Manhattan. Her parents named her Billie Jane Lee Lorraine after godmother Billie Holiday, her mother Jane (formerly a big band singer), her mother's ex-roommate Peggy Lee, and the song "Sweet Lorraine." She is the daughter of the late jazz writer Leonard Feather."

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Jazz & Blues
11:52 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Bob French, New Orleans drummer and bandleader, has died

Bob French sits at his drum set prior to performing at the New Orleans club d.b.a. in 2007.
Morris Schaefer Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 13, 2012 3:12 pm

Bob French, an iconic New Orleans drummer who led the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band for decades, died Monday, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. He was 74.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:30 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Bill Charlap solo piano: Tradition, invention and wit

Bill Charlap performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on October 24.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full interview and performance

It’s no wonder that pianist, Bill Charlap, loves the music that has come to be called The Great American Songbook—the songs of great Tin Pan Alley composers such as Jerome Kern, George Gershwin and Irving Berlin.  

He grew up with it. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:56 pm
Wed October 24, 2012

Catherine Russell: Keeping the family tradition alive

Catherine Russell performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Vocalist, Catherine Russell was raised in a musical family.  Her father, Luis, was Louis Armstrong’s band-leader and her mother, Carline Ray, was a member of the International Sweethearts Of Rhythm.

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Jazz & Blues
5:00 am
Mon October 8, 2012

KPLU School of Jazz is accepting applications for next year's program

KPLU is now accepting applications for 2012/2013 (Volume 9) from schools that are new to the School of Jazz program. The goal is to work with diverse schools and jazz programs: those with award-winning jazz bands, those who crave mentoring, and/or those who want the experience of recording a CD.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
8:00 am
Sat October 6, 2012

Curtis Stigers: Creating new jazz standards from contemporary

Curtis Stigers performing live in the KPLU Seattle Studios on September 11, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Curtis Stigers is a singer, songwriter, saxophonist who loves the great Tin Pan Alley songs of George Gershwin and Cole Porter, but finds a greater creative challenge in doing jazz versions of songs by more contemporary songwriters. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
11:20 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Halie Loren: Putting Eugene, Ore. on the jazz map

Halie Loren performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on September 5, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full interview & performance

In this studio session, hosted by Kevin Kniestedt, we’re pleased to introduce you to a woman who we believe is one of the finest up-and-coming international jazz talents to come along in years, Halie Loren. 

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NPR jazz
10:20 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Diana Krall Brings Sexy Back In Time

Mark Seliger Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 12:26 pm

When listening to Diana Krall's fun, smart new recording Glad Rag Doll, it's helpful to consider a question recently posed by Gyp Rosetti, the sensitive psychopath lending sparks to this season of HBO's Prohibition-era series Boardwalk Empire.

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