Marian McPartland, whose personal artistic history is deeply entwined with that of jazz, continues writing, touring and educating. Following her muse, she has encountered a who's who of jazz while leaving her own indelible mark on the music. Her radio program, Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz, is the longest running show on National Public Radio, and she continues to tape new episodes.
At the age of 91 she's still going strong with Piano Jazz, as well as periodic performances and composing new music, including the ambitious symphonic piece, A Portrait of Rachel Carson." Chapter Index ...read more
Jazz icon Marian McPartland turned 90 years young in March, 2008, and the special occasion produced an all-star party at Dizzy's Club in New York. National Public Radio has made some of the performance available online as part of the legendary pianist's weekly radio series Piano Jazz, an institution since 1979. As if 2008 couldn't be more productive for McPartland, she also recorded a new trio set for Concord, Twilight World. Joined by Gary Mazzaroppi (bass) and Glenn Davis (drums), McPartland delivers a low-key, slightly melancholy program, which is to be expected from a woman her age. That shouldn't suggest ...read more
Marian McPartland can be described on one word: gracious. Listeners have been treated to weekly installments of Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz, on US National Public Radio, for the past twenty-nine years, experiencing firsthand her graciousness in her light but stubborn Berkshire accent, her unmatched interview style, and, above all, her gin-crystalline pianism. That would be impressive enough if one were not to consider the fact that McPartland is the living corporate memory of jazz.
Marian McPartland celebrates her ninetieth birthday on March 20, 2008. She has been performing since age fifteen, professionally since age twenty-five. In 1944, she ...read more
Although many fans of Marian McPartland's long running NPR series heard former Frank Zappa sideman George Duke's guest appearance on Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz, few are likely to be aware of Zappa's own visit to the program, which took place in early 1988, just prior to the start of what would be his final tour. McPartland's interest in Zappa developed from conversations with a number of jazz musicians who had played with him, while the guitarist's familiarity with jazz helped to make things work. At times Zappa's sarcastic replies to her interview questions threaten to befuddle her (but never do), ...read more
The matchup is so unusual that it's alluring before a word is spoken or a note played: Marian McPartland, 85, the straight-laced matronly host of public radio's Piano Jazz spending an hour with John Medeski, 40, perhaps the most recognizable pioneer of modern acid jazz as one third of Medeski, Martin and Wood. She plays an acoustic piano; he has forty to fifty keyboards and considers them all essential. Of the fifteen Piano Jazz albums released to date, featuring guests ranging from Oscar Peterson to Bruce Hornsby, this seems the oddest meeting of the minds.
But it works, ...read more
Recorded in 1978 for Marian McPartland's radio program, this performance and conversation brings two great pianists together to reminisce and to talk about their careers as performers, scholars, and dedicated lovers of the art of jazz.Together, they uncover Teddy Wilson's biography piece by piece. It turns out Wilson was an early influence for McPartland from the time she was a teenager in England, listening to his recordings with Benny Goodman. As pianists, they discuss keyboard reach, accompanying singers, big band participation, chord substitution, improvisation versus note for note transcriptions, essential practice habits, warming up, mental preparation, ergonomics, and ...read more
By Chris DiGirolamo
Over 25 years ago South Carolina Educational Radio gave us Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz , the long-running public radio program in which McPartland invites guest artists into her studio for candid one-on-one chats about music. Over 500 programs later we continue to be blessed with releases from some of the select sessions, such as the two recently released standout broadcasts: McPartland with the great Teddy Wilson and with the legendary Lionel Hampton. To listen to these sessions is having a couch seat in these celebrated conversations that McPartland conducted.
Marian McPartland Piano Jazz with Teddy ...read more