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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
2:34 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Rachel Z On Piano Jazz

Rachel Z.
Courtesy of the artist

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.

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Deceptive Cadence
9:17 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Watch Bang On A Can Occupy 'Arthur'

Two of the Bang on a Can All-Stars immortalized on the kids' cartoon Arthur.
Courtesy of 'Arthur'

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 4:56 pm

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Classical Sessions
7:43 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Conjuring An Opera With Ten Fingers

Pianist Louis Lortie makes Wagnerian opera come alive in NPR's Studio 1.
Denise DeBelius NPR

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 3:19 pm

It's always been a treat to sit down with pianist Louis Lortie. In part because of his sound at the piano — the brightness, purity and clarity of his playing. But all the better to have a conversation with him, too. He is a sober, serious thinker, with an incisive point of view on every piece of music he chooses.

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Kind of Blog: An Occasional KWGS Jazz Journal
5:16 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

On the Next All This Jazz, We've Got Can't-Miss Live Recordings in Various Styles

As springtime gives way, ever so slowly, to summertime --- and as Memorial Day weekend, summer's unofficial gateway, draws nearer and nearer --- the minds of many music-lovers will wander, perhaps inevitably, and perhaps even repeatedly, to reveries of catching a nice concert or two at this or that outdoor venue.

Or else, as the case may be, this or that indoor venue. (Sometimes it rains. Or a nightclub beckons.)

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2:31 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Blue Note At 75, The Concert

Dr. Lonnie Smith at the Blue Note 75 concert.

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 9:37 am

The iconic jazz label Blue Note Records turns 75 this year, and it celebrated in Washington, D.C. As the capstone to a week of performances, film screenings and discussions, Blue Note artists gathered in the 2,465-seat Concert Hall of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for a special performance.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:25 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Mothers Of Intervention: The Operatic Moms Puzzler

Madama Butterfly is one of many unhappy moms in opera.
Patrick Riviere Getty Images

It's not easy being a mom, but it's even tougher for mothers in opera. So often they're completely absent while fathers have leading roles in shows like Rigoletto, La traviata, The Flying Dutchman. When depicted at all, operatic moms are usually under supreme stress. They can be murderous, manipulative or simply mad. Only rarely are they the loving moms who brought us into the world. Here your job is to identify the operas and their mothers. Score high and brag to your own sweet (or stressed) mom. Score low and go to your room without supper.

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Mountain Stage
12:11 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Gregory Alan Isakov On Mountain Stage

Gregory Alan Isakov.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 3:25 pm

Gregory Alan Isakov makes his first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va.

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A Blog Supreme
3:21 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

The First African-American Piano Manufacturer

The high-end Setai Fifth Avenue Hotel in New York, now called Langham Place, took in one of Warren Shadd's pianos.
Courtesy of Warren Shadd

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 10:20 am

At the Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival in February, one couldn't help but notice the striking new grand piano on the main stage, emblazoned with the name SHADD. When the many accomplished pianists that wee­­kend sat down to strike those keys, it was equally easy to spot their delight in the instrument.

That piano was the product of a trailblazer in his field. The Shadd in question is jazz drummer Warren Shadd, the first African-American piano manufacturer. That makes him the first large-scale commercial African-American instrument manufacturer, period.

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Music Lists
2:14 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Juan Formell: Remembering Cuba's Musical Nonconformist

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8:23 am
Wed May 7, 2014

The Fine Arts Quartet on Performance Oklahoma

Described by the Washington Post as "one of the gold-plated names in chamber music," the Fine Arts Quartet ranks among the most distinguished ensembles of our time, with an illustrious history of performing success and an extensive recording legacy. Founded in Chicago in 1946 and based at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee since 1963, the Quartet has recorded and toured internationally for over half a century. Presented by Chamber Music in Oklahoma on Sunday, April 6th at Christ the King Catholic Church in Oklahoma City, the ensemble offered the String Quartet in F Major, Op 74, No.

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