NPR Music

Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
8:39 am
Fri December 19, 2014

George Shearing's Holiday Set On Piano Jazz

George Shearing.
New York Daily News Archive Getty Images

British jazz pianist George Shearing was a friend and frequent guest on Piano Jazz. On this special edition of the program from 2001, Shearing joins host Marian McPartland to celebrate the holidays in a jazzy way.

The two reminisce about seasons gone by and perform traditional and contemporary holiday tunes, including "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and "Away In A Manger."

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A Blog Supreme
6:57 am
Fri December 19, 2014

An Upset Either Way: Steve Lehman And Wadada Leo Smith Triumph

Wadada Leo Smith finished second in the NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, separated by only 12 points from surprise winner Steve Lehman.
Scott Groller Courtesy of the artist

Could anyone have predicted that Steve Lehman and Wadada Leo Smith would place first and second in this year's NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, among a field including previous winners Sonny Rollins, Vijay Iyer and Jason Moran, plus 2011 runner-up (and favorite going in) Ambrose Akinmusire? Not me, and I even had Lehman and Smith on my ballot, along with Rollins and Akinmusire.

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Extras: TED Radio Hour
6:47 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Playlist: What Music Means

These TED Radio Hour stories get musical.
iStock

In this playlist, TED speakers share stories about composing songs after years of writer's block, the culture of sampling, and a glimpse inside a jazz musician's brain.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

World Cafe
2:42 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Latin Roots Essentials: Latin Alternative

Los Fabulosos Cadillacs.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 11:20 am

Another segment in our new Latin Roots series on the Essentials, the songs you need to know in each genre. We have a pretty good guide for our Latin alternative segment today. It is Josh Norek, who is the co-founder of the annual Latin Alternative Music Conference, and former head of Nacional Records.

He discusses the evolution from the original term "Rock En Espanol" and shows the variety of music under the name alternative.

World Cafe
2:42 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Parquet Courts On World Cafe

Parquet Courts.
Ben Rayner Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 5:52 pm

It has been a prolific year for our guests today, the punk band Parquet Courts. They have released two albums this year: Sunbathing Animal under their own name and Content Nausea as Parkay Quarts. We will talk with two founders of the band, Andrew Savage and Austin Brown, and hear performances from the stage of World Cafe Live. We also find out that the new songs are inspired by influences as diverse as Russian history and Louisiana prison songs.

Music
1:53 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Music A Longtime Feature Of Cuba-U.S. Cultural Exchange

Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 3:32 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Music Reviews
1:53 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Music Review: Lori Henriques' 'How Great Can This Day Be'

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 4:01 pm

In contrast to many of her peers, Portland-based musician Lori Henriques' music for kids is rooted in jazz. Her latest album is How Great Can This Day Be.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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The Record
12:57 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

On 'The Pinkprint,' Nicki Minaj Speaks The Language Of Love

Nicki Minaj, in a still from her video for "Only."
Courtesy of the artist

The Pinkprint is just a record, as far as hip-hop is concerned. Nothing more, nothing less. But for Nicki Minaj, it's a career-defining moment. Even after she weathered a storm of rap critic scolds unhappy with her for completely crossing over the line she once straddled so well, the dance-pop successes of her last album, Roman Reloaded, overshadowed her artistic credibility. How would she bounce back? As Nicki well knows, hip-hop will only take it so far.

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Mountain Stage
9:38 am
Thu December 18, 2014

Marti Jones On Mountain Stage

Marti Jones.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Marti Jones appears on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. A multi-talented artist with a multi-faceted career, Jones began playing in bands in her native Ohio before issuing several solo albums. She performs frequently with her husband, Don Dixon, but has occasionally taken breaks from music to pursue her other career as a visual artist.

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