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Piano music (Jazz)

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21:16

Vijay Iyer: Self-Taught Jazz Pianist Goes 'Solo'

A jazz pianist and bandleader, Iyer is one of the most critically acclaimed musicians of the past decade. He also has a masters in physics. Here, he explains why he decided to switch to a full-time career as a jazz musician, and describes what influenced his album Solo.

12:29

For Boston: A Dave McKenna Concert

Fresh Air pays tribute to Boston with a 1988 performance by the late jazz pianist Dave McKenna. From 1981 to 1991, McKenna had a standing gig at Boston's Grand Dame Copley Plaza Hotel. He was also a loyal Red Sox fan. He died in 2008.

27:20

Vijay Iyer: Self-Taught Jazz Pianist Goes 'Solo.'

A jazz pianist and bandleader, Iyer is one of the most critically acclaimed musicians of the past decade. He also has a masters in physics. Here, he explains why he decided to switch to a full-time career as a jazz musician, and describes what influenced his latest album, Solo.

19:23

After Emerging From Coma, Fred Hersch Plays Again.

In 2008, jazz pianist Fred Hersch slipped into an AIDS-related coma for more than two months. When he came out of the coma, he couldn't walk, eat or play piano. Hersch explains how he rebuilt himself after his illness and composed music for his latest album, Whirl.

03:19

'Fresh Air' at 20: New Orleans' Dr. John

Fresh Air went national in 1987, and we're celebrating that 20th anniversary by revisiting some classic broadcasts. In this segment: A song from New Orleans musician Dr. John, aka Mac Rebennack. Rebroadcast from May 1987.

14:40

Jazz Week: Marian McPartland's Career in Jazz.

Jazz pianist Marian McPartland. Though British-born, white and a woman, McPartland has had a forty-year career in a profession that is largely male and black. She is heard on many National Public Radio stations in her popular series with leading jazz artists. (REBROADCAST from 9/8/87)

11:15

Jazz Week: Keeping Kansas City Jazz Alive.

Kansas City pianist Jay McShann. As a big band leader in the 40s and 50s, McShann helped start the careers of jazz stars like Charlie Parker and Big Joe Turner. He performs "When I Grow To Old To Dream." Kansas City pianist Jay McShann. As a big band leader in the 40s and 50s, McShann helped start the careers of jazz stars like Charlie Parker and Big Joe Turner. He performs "When I Grow To Old To Dream." (rebroadcast from 10/8/87)

47:33

Jazz Pianist Keith Jarrett.

Jazz pianist Keith Jarrett. Called one of the greatest improvisers in the history of jazz, Jarrett was famous for his wildly passionate solo recitals. In 1996, Jarrett came down with a mysterious illness—- an interstitial bacterial parasite-- that caused him to stop performing for about two and a half years. Jarrett has started performing and recording again, but he still keeps a low public profile, so his condition will not worsen again. His newest CD, Whisper Not (Universal Classics), will be released next month.

51:33

American Popular Song: Tribute to Eubie Blake.

We continue our rebroadcast of our series on American Popular Song with a tribute to ragtime composer and performer Eubie Blake. He was born on February 7,1883 in Baltimore, Md. He wrote the songs for the Broadway hit Shuffle Along. African American ragtime musicians of the day sought out Eubie to write their songs. Two of Eubie Blake's best known songs are "I'm Just Wild About Harry" and  "Love Will Find A Way." Just over one hundred years after his life began, on February 12, 1983, Eubie Blake died in Brooklyn, New York.

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