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.
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.
In a transitional period between different groups with Miles Davis and Anthony Braxton and his fusion band, Return to Forever, Chick Corea recorded a series of solo piano improvisations in 1971. Those recordings and a 1983 follow-up have been reissued in a three-CD box set.
Fresh Air's jazz critic reviews a new reissue of Folk Songs for Far Out Folk, an obscure but iconic 1958 album created by jazz cellist Fred Katz — a student of classical giant Pablo Casals and a player in Chico Hamilton's legendary '50s quintet.
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.
The new album 3 showcases Lafayette Gilchrist's maximalist jazz piano in a trio setting rather than with his seven-piece New Volcanoes band. Even in the more intimate arrangement, Gilchrist isn't afraid to make the box shout; this is jazz from artists influenced by everything from hip-hop to the D.C. area's distinctive go-go sound.