Latest Jazz from NPR Music

2:03 am
Sat May 23, 2015

Jamie Cullum Wants You To Hear These Jazz Tunes

Jamie Cullum, a popular jazz musician, shares his top tracks of the moment.
McVirn Etienne Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat May 23, 2015 9:48 pm

Read more
Jazz Night In America: The Radio Program
3:53 pm
Fri May 22, 2015

Joe Temperley: 'No Greater Sound On Earth'

Joe Temperley performs with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra in 2013.
Frank Stewart Jazz at Lincoln Center

Baritone saxophonist and clarinetist Joe Temperley has led an illustrious career spanning several decades, performing in some of the best big bands that ever were. Temperley, now 85, has performed with the orchestras of Humphrey Lyttelton, Woody Herman, Thad Jones & Mel Lewis, Clark Terry, Joe Henderson, and of course, Duke Ellington. For the past 25 years, Temperley has also been the heart and soul of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.

Read more
Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
2:56 pm
Fri May 22, 2015

Lionel Hampton On Piano Jazz

Lionel Hampton.
Reg Davis Getty Images

Vibraphonist Lionel Hampton (1908–2002) was one of the most influential figures in the history of jazz. He made the vibes a vital voice in the arsenal of jazz instruments, and gained international fame while playing in Benny Goodman's small groups and leading his own orchestra.

Read more
World Cafe
1:08 pm
Fri May 22, 2015

West Philadelphia Orchestra On World Cafe

West Philadelphia Orchestra with interloping World Cafe host David Dye (ensousaphoned, right).
Rich McKie WXPN

We've got something quite different as our Sense of Place: Philly series continues. Philadelphia has a brass band called The West Philadelphia Orchestra. They specialize in Balkan music, and as they were rehearsing a number of years ago, a singer was passing by who knew the music they were playing from growing up — and she joined the band. Petia Zamfirova will be the first to say this eclectic group is not just about backing her singing. We'll find out how this band grew here, hear about their selection in the All Songs Considered Tiny Desk Concert contest and more.

Read more
All Songs Considered
8:03 am
Fri May 22, 2015

All Songs +1: 'Epic' Jazz From Kamasi Washington

Kamasi Washington's appropriately-named new album, The Epic, is out now.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri May 22, 2015 10:37 am

Even if you don't know anything about jazz, it's quite possible you've heard the music of saxophonist Kamasi Washington: That's him on the latest albums by Kendrick Lamar and Flying Lotus. But that's only the very tip of his iceberg.

Read more
Jazz Night In America: The Radio Program
5:56 pm
Tue May 19, 2015

A Tribute To Kenny Wheeler

Kenny Wheeler.
W. Patrick Hinely Courtesy of the artist

The late Kenny Wheeler's stunning compositions and imaginative improvisations on trumpet and flugelhorn left deep impressions on generations of musicians. Two such devotees — trumpeter Ingrid Jensen and saxophonist Steve Treseler — revisited Wheeler's compositions after his death in 2014 at age 84. And in doing so, they realized they wanted to record their arrangements, paying tribute to the man who catalyzed their own careers.

Read more
First Listen
11:03 pm
Sun May 17, 2015

First Listen: Joshua Redman & The Bad Plus, 'The Bad Plus Joshua Redman'

Joshua Redman & The Bad Plus' new album, The Bad Plus Joshua Redman, comes out May 26.
Cameron Wittig Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed May 20, 2015 3:37 pm

For the last two years, pianist Ethan Iverson has been at the center of what looks, in hindsight, like a serious creative whirlwind. He re-conceptualized Stravinsky's ballet The Rite Of Spring in its entirety (!) for his trio The Bad Plus, and then, for good measure, recorded an album of all-original Bad Plus music (Inevitable Western).

Read more
Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
12:03 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Gonzalo Rubalcaba On Piano Jazz

Gonzalo Rubalcaba is shown performing during the 2011 Newport Jazz Festival.
Eva Hambach AFP/Getty Images

The music of pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba is a potent mixture of Cuban and American jazz. His style sounds both melodic and rhythmic, filled with exciting and intriguing influences. He plays everything from jazz to classical, as well as music from his native Cuba.

Read more
Songs We Love
4:02 pm
Thu May 14, 2015

Songs We Love: Anat Cohen, 'Putty Boy Strut'

Israeli jazz reedist Anat Cohen.
Augusta Sagnelli Courtesy of the artist

It begins with meandering clarinet and clipped, four-on-the-floor percussion. A little bit later comes a countermelody, and the image that comes to mind is something from early New Orleans, or perhaps a Mediterranean folk song. It's even called "Putty Boy Strut" — that could be an obscure Jelly Roll Morton tune, right?

Read more
5:18 pm
Sun May 10, 2015

Kamasi Washington's 3-Hour Jazz 'Epic,' Complete With Creation Myth

Kamasi Washington's new album is called The Epic.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon May 11, 2015 6:52 pm

When Kamasi Washington called his new album The Epic, he meant it.

His band has two drummers, two bass players, both piano and keyboards. There are three horns and two lead vocals. There's a 20-piece choir and a 32-piece string section.

Read more