Nakasian left Wall Street to pursue her dream of becoming a professional jazz singer. The alto, who has recorded seven albums, including tributes to June Christy and Billie Holiday, describes her path from investment banking to touring internationally with Jon Hendricks and Company.
Nicole Mitchell's Renegades matches exploratory playing with deep grooves and a tight ensemble blend. The new group is Black Earth Strings, consisting of flute, three strings and percussionist Shirazette Tinnin.
Her father was Louis Armstrong's music director and a noted bandleader in his own right; her mother was a member of the iconic International Sweethearts of Rhythm. Critic Nat Hentoff says that pedigree — and her own unmistakable chops — make Cat Russell "the real thing" in a crowd of jazz wannabes "who couldn't lasted through a chorus in a contest with Ella Fitzgerald or Betty Carter."
Celebrated soprano saxophonist Jane Ira Bloom — a pioneer, among other things, in the use of electronics in live jazz — has an inventively formatted new recording. Fresh Air's jazz critic has a listen.
The 78-year-old singer is currently performing at Birdland in New York City. Previously, Carroll spent 25 years playing at Bemelmans Bar at the Carlyle Hotel. This year, she received three lifetime achievement awards; one of them was the Kennedy Center's Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Lifetime Achievement Award. Carroll has a number of albums to her credit; her latest is the new solo album Morning in May.
Singer and actress Annie Ross. Ross is best-known as a member of the jazz vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks and Ross. She also wrote "Twisted," which was recorded by both Joni Mitchell and Bette Midler. She made her acting debut in the 1974 play "Kennedy's Children," and has appeared in such films as "The Homecoming," "Yanks," and Robert Altman’s "Short Cuts." (Rebroadcast from 3/2/90)
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)
Pianist Marian McPartland, host of Marian McPartland's piano jazz will celebrate her 80th birthday in a live broadcast from New York City, Saturday night. We'll rebroadcast Terry's interview with her. (REBROADCAST from 9/8/87)
A concert and interview with Shirley Horn. Playing with her will be drummer Steve Williams and bassist Charles Ables. Horn recorded with Miles Davis and Quincy Jones in the 1960s and sang on the movie soundtrack of "For Love of Ivy." After a hiatus in which she stayed home and raised her daughter, she returned to performing and recording in 1988. Joining Horn are bassist Charles Ables and drummer Steve Williams. Her latest album is "The Main Ingredient" (on Verve). (REBROADCAST. Originally aired 6/29/92).