arts and culture

Jimmy McPartland and Marian McPartland

May 22, 2018
 Jimmy McPartland and Marian McPartland, 1989
Ebet Roberts

In this 1989 session, jazz cornetist Jimmy McPartland (1907 – 1991) treats listeners to a firsthand account of his outstanding musical career. Marian McPartland introduces him as “a gentleman I know quite well,” and their longtime relationship speaks for itself as they reminisce about the early days. Married after meeting in Belgium during World War II, Jimmy was in part responsible for introducing a pianist then known as Marian Margaret Turner to the American jazz scene.

In Honor of Marian McPartland

May 21, 2018
Marian McPartland, host of "Piano Jazz," in 2000.
Elizabeth Annas

In the spring of 2018, South Carolina Public Radio unveiled an exhibit of photos taken during recording session for Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz. This year marks the centennial of host Marian McPartland (March 20, 1918 - August 20, 2013) and in her honor we present a series of 40+ minicasts (mini-podcasts) that capture the essence of the program and correspond with the photos on display.

Harry "Sweets" Edison
Lionel DeCoster [CC BY-SA 3.0], from Wikimedia Commons

Harry "Sweets" Edison (1915 – 1999) was a legendary stylist of jazz trumpet. From his days as a soloist in the Count Basie Band to his time as a studio musician for the likes of Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, and Ella Fitzgerald, he was known for the sweet, muted tones that were his namesake. On this Piano Jazz, originally broadcast just months before he passed away in 1999, Edison joins McPartland and bassist Andy Simpkins for “Dejection Blues” and “No Greater Love,” along with one of his originals, “Centerpiece.”

Narrative: Turning Up All the Stones

May 9, 2018
Brooke Howard and Barbara Howard, Columbia 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project where friends and loved ones interview each other. At the StoryCorps mobile booth in Columbia in 2016, Barbara Howard spoke with her daughter, Brooke Howard, about her late husband, James William Howard, who was a "one in a million" father to Brooke and her siblings. Here, Brooke asks her mom to share some memories from the early years in their relationship.

Virginia Mayhew
centerstage.conn-selmer.com

Saxophonist, composer, and bandleader Virginia Mayhew has appeared in major New York jazz venues, from the Blue Note to Carnegie Hall, toured internationally, and twice represented the US as a Jazz Ambassador. She is also an active jazz educator and founded the Greenwich House Music School Jazz Workshop. On this 1998 Piano Jazz, Mayhew and McPartland join forces to perform “All the Things You Are” and “Body and Soul.” They close the hour with a free piece, improvised live in the studio.

For conductor Suzanna Pavlovsky, keeping younger audiences engaged in the world of classical music doesn’t require a complete overhaul so much as a repackaging.

“We don’t need to change the repertoire. We don’t need to change the music itself,” Suzanna says. “But we need to come up with some sort of idea to keep the younger generations more active.”

Don Friedman
donfriedman.net

In honor of the birthday of Don Friedman (May 4, 1935 – June 30, 2016), Piano Jazz presents this broadcast from 1996. Although Friedman first studied classical piano, he fell in love with the voice of jazz and performed with jazz greats such as Chet Baker and Buddy DeFranco. In this session, Friedman demonstrates his unique sound on a solo of his “Waltz for Marilyn.” He and McPartland duet in “Stella by Starlight,” and bassist Gary Mazzaroppi joins for “How Deep is the Ocean.”

News & Talk Stations: Sat, May 05, 8 pm | News & Music Stations: Sun, May 06, 7 pm

Eliane Elias
elianeelias.com

Brazilian pianist, composer, and vocalist Elaine Elias grew up with an affinity for both the music of her home country as well as American jazz. She got her start performing with two renowned Brazilian artists, singer-songwriter Toquinho and poet Vinicius de Moraes, before moving to New York in the 1980s, where she took the American jazz scene by storm. She was McPartland’s guest for the first time in this 1988 Piano Jazz session. Elias plays a beautiful arrangement of “Darn that Dream” and teams up with McPartland for “Falling in Love with Love.”

NatureNotes
SC Public Radio

Rudy shares some words from "the poet."

A.T. Shire, SC Public Radio

When the celebrated maker of string instruments Antonio Stradivari put the finishing touches on the violin now known as the Ex-Nachez, Bach and Handel were barely into their toddler years and the invention of the piano was still more than a decade away. 

The rare violin has passed through the hands of many an owner and virtuoso performer since that time, but, as Yuriy Bekker of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra can attest, the instrument is still in excellent playing condition.

Narrative: "Oh, Those Were Yummy Days!"

Apr 10, 2018
Ann Edwards and Thomas Edwards, Columbia 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project that collects the voices of our times. At the StoryCorps mobile booth in Columbia in 2016, Thomas and Ann Edwards sat down to talk about their marriage and the family they made together over 50 years. They both grew up in South Carolina, and here Ann and Thomas remember childhood in the 1950s and their own grandparents.

Narrative: "It Was Like We Hit Lightning in a Bottle"

Mar 27, 2018
Hippie Torrales, Columbia 2018
South Carolina Public Radio

This edition of Narrative features an interview with Columbia resident Hippie Torrales, who came of age in New Jersey with the dream of becoming a professional DJ. By age 20 he was mainstay of the New Jersey club scene, opening one of the biggest clubs of the era, Zanzibar. Here, Hippie explains how he and his contemporaries became the innovators of a new musical style in the 1980s.

Gil Goldstein
John Abbott

Composer and arranger Gil Goldstein came to the piano by way of the accordion, which he has rediscovered and added to the jazz lexicon. Collaborations with Jaco Pistorius and Bill Evans fostered his career and led to work with David Sanborn, Michael Franks, and Al Jarreau, among others, and to writing original scores for films. In this 2001 Piano Jazz session, Goldstein solos on his own “City Lights.” McPartland accompanies him as he plays accordion for a few tunes, including “Waltz for Debbie.”

NatureNotes
SC Public Radio

Rudy shares some of Longfellow's poetry, "If Spring Came but Once a Year."

Marian McPartland
SC Public Radio

No jazz musician has ever been heard more on public radio than the late Marian McPartland, the host of NPR's Piano Jazz for more than 40 years. But for all her ubiquity, how well did we really know her?

Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
SC Public Radio

For more than 50 years, Earma Thompson (1923 – 2009) was a constant on the Chicago jazz scene. She was recognized as the reigning queen of Windy City jazz but spent most of her career as a dependable and accomplished side person. In her 80s Thompson released her first albums as a leader, including 2004’s Just in Time, which debuted shortly before her 2005 appearance on Piano Jazz. In this session, Thompson showcases her elegant, bluesy style on “Back at the Chicken Shack” before joining McPartland for “Lullaby of the Leaves.”

Alicia Keys with Marian McPartland in 2003
Piano Jazz Session

This edition of Narrative features an interview by Christian McBride, host of NPR’s Jazz Night in America. He had a conversation with South Carolina Public Radio’s own Shari Hutchinson, who produced Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz for more than 25 years.

Marian with Jimmy McPartland at the Piano Jazz recording session.
SCETV

This year marks the centennial of Marian McPartland (1918 – 2013). In honor of the occasion, Piano Jazz revisits a session with Marian and Jimmy McPartland. In addition to playing with the early greats, such as Bix Beiderbecke and Fats Waller, trumpet legend Jimmy McPartland (1907 – 1991) was also responsible for introducing a young English pianist named Margaret Marian Turner to the American Jazz scene. In this classic program from 1990, the McPartlands perform one of Jimmy’s favorite tunes, “St. James Infirmary.”

The horn section of the band at Lee Correctional Institution.  Musicians work on original songs to perform with members of DeCoda, a New York-based chamber music group.   The annual week of collaboration is something new for everyone involved.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville counts numerous musicians among its inmates.  Such is their talent that they have attracted the attention of DeCoda, a New York-based chamber music group.  For four years now, the prison has sponsored a program with the group in which DeCoda comes to work with the prisoners at Lee for a week to write and play music for an annual performance.  

Jeremy Monteiro rehearsing before the Jazznote Festival at Timbre.
Alfiedog [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Pianist Jeremy Monteiro grew up in Singapore, where he launched a remarkable career, landing his first gig at 17. He gained international attention in 1988 at the Montreaux Jazz Festival and has continued to gain acclaim worldwide throughout his career. To his credit he has more than 20 albums as a leader, is a voting member of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, and has received Singapore’s highest honor in the arts, the Cultural Medallion.

Massive, Seldom-Staged Bernstein Work Comes to SC

Feb 27, 2018

With musical influences as diverse as jazz, Broadway, rock, and the liturgy of the Catholic Church, Leonard Bernstein’s MASS: A Theatre Piece for Singers, Players, and Dancers is a work that demands versatility from its scores of performers. The range of music genres in Mass, along with the difficulties of coordinating the variety of performing groups for which it calls, make staging the work a seldom-pursued challenge.

Carol Sloane, in an early promotional photo, 1958.
Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame Historical Archive

Carol Sloane is a sublime singer of great songs. She is natural and unaffected, with a voice that embraces the melody and the listener with equal parts maturity and conviction. Combining spirit with character, elegance with style, Sloane has enchanted audiences all over the world. Her command of the Great American Songbook is unmatched. On this 2002 Piano Jazz, Sloane brings her effortless charms to Irving Berlin’s “Cheek to Cheek.” She and McPartland end the hour with Ellington’s “I Love You Madly.”

Frank Kimbrough
Pirouet Records

When pianist Frank Kimbrough was McPartland’s guest in 1997, he was performing regularly with the Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra at Visiones Jazz Club in New York, where he has been active on the jazz scene for nearly four decades. An educator and recording artist, Kimbrough was a founding member and composer-in-residence of the Jazz Composers Collective. In this Piano Jazz session, Kimbrough’s graceful, romantic style is evident on a Herbie Nichols tune, “Wildflower.” He and McPartland duet on Sonny Rollins’ “Doxy.”

For pianist Paolo Gualdi, variety is an important part of being a well-rounded musician. 

According to the Francis Marion University professor, “It’s a great advantage to be open to many, many different kinds of music. It doesn’t matter what you’re listening to, as long as it’s high-quality, as long as there’s something interesting about it.”

Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
SC Public Radio

Harmonically modern and rooted in the 1960s hard-bop school, Albert Dailey (1939 – 1984) had a superb command of his instrument. A leader and sideman, Dailey played piano with Art Blakey, Sarah Vaughan, Stan Getz, Charles Mingus, and Lee Konitz, to name only a few. He was one of McPartland’s guests in the early years of Piano Jazz. On this 1983 episode, Dailey demonstrates his brilliant sense of invention on “If You Could See Me Now” and joins McPartland on “Night in Tunisia.”

Like father, like son.

SC composer Richard Maltz thrives on linking family relationships to his passion for creating music. His son, the Vienna-based pianist Daniel Adam Maltz, isn’t so different. Daniel will give the premiere performance of his father’s piano concerto on Thursday, February 8th, at the USC Aiken Etherredge Center.  The concerto, along with Richard’s Symphony No. 2, “Fraternal,” is part of a program entitled Mostly Maltz: Classicism Revisited.

An early publicity photo of Carline Ray.
Facebook

Forceful double bassist and spirited vocalist Carline Ray (1925 – 2013) was known as one of the pioneering woman of jazz. A member of The International Sweethearts of Rhythm, she worked with prodigious female talents such as Mary Lou Williams and Marian McPartland. On this 1997 Piano Jazz, Ray shares her many abilities with McPartland as she performs on multiple instruments. Ray plays bass on “In a Sentimental Mood,” sings “Come Sunday,” and switches to piano for “After Hours.”

Charlie Watts
rollingstones.com

Drummer Charlie Watts has been the heartbeat of the Rolling Stones for more than 50 years, though he has always had a passion for jazz and the blues. Saxophonist Tim Ries plays with the Stones, but as a true jazz journeyman, he’s also worked with greats such as Maria Schneider, Maynard Ferguson, and Tim Woods. When Watts and Ries were on a break from the Rolling Stones’ World Tour in 2007, they sat down with McPartland for an hour of jazz and rock, with Ries’ arrangement of the Stones classic “Honkey Tonk Woman.”

Glen Wright leads Shape Note Singing at NEFFA.
squashpicker [CC BY-NC-SA 2.0] via Flickr

A musical tradition begun in Colonial America which flourished in the South in the late 19th to mid 20th centuries is still carried on in South Carolina.  It’s shape note singing - also known as fa-sol-la, Jubilee or sacred harp singing.  A method developed to teach music to people who couldn’t read music, the notes on the page use shapes such as round, square, and triangular to represent the various pitches. 

Liz Magnes on Piano Jazz

Jan 22, 2018
Liz Manges
lizmanges.com

In 2001 McPartland introduced Piano Jazz audiences to Liz Magnes, one of Israel’s most dynamic and creative solo jazz pianists. Her signature style blends Eastern and Western influences, creating a World Music flavor. Magnes moved to New York in 2000, going on to perform coast to coast and dedicating much of her time to arts education. In this session, Magnes presents her percussive form on “Someone to Watch Over Me.” She and McPartland team up for “Ain’t Misbehavin’.”

News & Talk Stations: Sat, Jan 27, 8 pm | News & Music Stations: Sun, Jan 28, 7 pm

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