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Sunday > YPR Program Guide > Program Listings > Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland

Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland

Mondays 2:06pm

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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 and influential 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.

April 6
Remembering Mulgrew Miller

Pianist Mulgrew Miller began his career with the Mercer Ellington Band, and his sensitivity and stride virtuosity kept him busy throughout his career. His post-bop flair was rooted in the Delta Blues. On this Piano Jazz appearance from 2003, Miller shows his compositional prowess on “Carousel,” and he and McPartland trade licks on Duke Ellington’s “What Am I Here For?”

April 14      
Marie Marcus

Marie Marcus was a remarkable stride pianist and a protégé of Fats Waller. A native of Boston, Marcus played in all the jazz hot spots before settling down in Cape Cod, where she became known as the Cape’s “First Lady of Jazz.” On this 1993 program she talks about her mentor, Fats Waller, and performs a medley of his most famous tunes.

April 21    
Steely Dan

Guitarist Walter Becker and singer/pianist Donald Fagen are the duo at the core of the jazz-influenced rock band, Steely Dan. They grew up listening to Bill Evans, Charles Mingus, Sonny Rollins, Charlie Parker and Duke Ellington. Since the late 1960s they have been continually honing their integration of jazz and rock. The pair performs Steely Dan hits “Josie” and “Chain Lightning” as well as standards “Mood Indigo” and “Hesitation Blues.”

April 28    
Paquito D’Rivera

Havana-born saxophonist and clarinetist Paquito D’Rivera began as somewhat of a child prodigy. Today his international style moves from bebop to Latin to Mozart. D’Rivera and bassist David Fink join McPartland for “Birk’s Works,” in honor of composer Dizzy Gillespie, and perform “A Night in Englewood.”

May 5   
Howard Alden

Howard Alden has been hailed by critics as “the most impressive and creative member of a new generation of jazz guitarists.” His superb solo and accompaniment skills have led to work with legends including Red Norvo, Woody Herman, and guitarist George Van Eps (his mentor). This week Alden demonstrates his harmonic and melodic mastery of the seven-string guitar with a glowing version of “Single Petal of a Rose.”

May 12      
Rachel Z

Pianist Rachel Z trained at the New England Conservatory before beginning her professional career as a performer with the likes of Al Di Meola,  Larry  Coryell,  and  the  fusion  band Steps Ahead. She also worked with saxophonist Wayne Shorter on his Grammy winning comeback album, High Life. This week Rachel Z performs originals, including “Gently Sleeps the Pear Tree” and “Artemisia,” and duets with McPartland on “Autumn Leaves.”

May 19   
Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood is best known for his Hollywood work, but he’s also a composer and a true jazz aficionado. Eastwood discusses his love for the music of Errol Garner and reminisces about seeing Charlie Parker perform live. McPartland gives beautiful treatments of Eastwood’s own tunes,  “Claudia’s  Theme”  and  “Doe  Eyes,” for an intriguing hour with one of the most talented artists of our time.

May 26   
Jon Faddis

Jon Faddis is one of today’s premier trumpet players and an accomplished teacher- composer-conductor-recording artist. Faddis consistently exemplifies an unparalleled range and dazzling technique. His style evokes Louis Armstrong,  Miles  Davis,  and  Roy  Eldridge, as well as his close friend and mentor Dizzy Gillespie. He demonstrates his love for Dizzy on “Fiesta Mojo” and plays flugelhorn on a Faddis original, “Bass Squeezin’.”

June 2   
Joe Bushkin

Pianist Joe Bushkin got his start in Bunny Berigan’s band in 1935 and went on to work with Eddie Condon, Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, and Bing Crosby. Bushkin sings and plays on his original “Oh Look At Me Now” and duets with McPartland on George Gershwin’s “They Can’t Take That Away from Me.”

June 9      
Amina Figarova

Amina Figarova grew up in the former Soviet state of Azerbaijan. Originally a conservatory trained classical pianist, Figarova studied jazz performance in Rotterdam and at the Berklee School of Music in Boston. Her refined and lyrical style is on display as she performs her own “Night Train,” and McPartland joins her for “Body and Soul.”

June 16   
Jerry Dodgion

Saxophonist Jerry Dodgion has played with just about everyone in the jazz world throughout his long career, including Benny Carter, Red Norvo,  Frank  Sinatra,  and  Benny  Goodman. A gifted improviser influenced by Charlie Parker, Dodgion always has something to say in his solos. Dodgion sits in with McPartland on “Isfahan” and pulls out his flute for McPartland’s “Ambiance.”

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