jazz

Music History
3:11 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

How The Waltz Came To America (And Pop Music)

From Wikipedia

Almost every partner dance is a descendant of the waltz.

The oldest of ballroom dances, the waltz has roots as far back as the 13th century. As it evolved and entered the ballrooms of Europe, the waltz was viewed as taboo because partners were permitted to make contact. But like the tango and other exciting and challenging dances, the waltz spread until by the middle of the nineteenth century it was firmly established in the U.S.

Today’s standard waltz rhythm that we now know and love became popular due to the musical creations of composers such as Johann Strauss.

Read more
Theater
10:24 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Audra McDonald As Billie Holiday: The Importance Of Feeling It

Audra McDonald just nabbed a Tony nominations for playing Billie Holiday in Lady Day At Emerson's Bar And Grill.
Evgenia Eliseeva

Originally published on Tue April 29, 2014 8:32 am

Billie Holiday will not be singing unless she "feels it." That's practically her thesis statement in Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, Lanie Robertson's play about a drug-ravaged nightclub show near the end of Holiday's tortured life. War stories and bawdy jokes are never a problem — and neither is pouring a drink — but if the audience wants a show, they have to wait until Lady Day can give them something real.

Read more
Music
10:24 am
Tue April 29, 2014

The Public School Where The Duke Lives On

Trumpeter Geraldo Marshall and trombonist Johannes Utas, students at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, rehearse for their school's 40th anniversary celebration.
Lauren Migaki NPR

Originally published on Tue April 29, 2014 9:52 am

Duke Ellington didn't consider himself a jazz musician.

He said he was a musician who played jazz. And what a musician: pianist, bandleader, composer of more than 1,000 songs including standards like "Don't Get Around Much Anymore," "It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)," "Satin Doll" and "Sophisticated Lady."

Read more
Doris Duke Artist Awards
9:56 am
Wed April 23, 2014

13 Jazz Artists Awarded Over $1.7 Million

Roscoe Mitchell is one of six jazz musicians awarded the Doris Duke Artist Award for 2014.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 10:30 am

Yesterday, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation announced the recipients of its 2014 Performing Artist Awards, including 13 jazz and improvising musicians, who will receive at least $1.7 million in unrestricted grants in total.

Read more
Mancini Lives!
1:26 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

'Swing Years' Theme Song Explained

The most frequently asked question of The Swing Years and Beyond is “What is your theme?”

Played at the top of each Swing Years show, it’s "Royal Blue" from "The Pink Panther" soundtrack. The film came out in 1963 and the album was released in 1964, featuring lounge and lush instrumentals by Henri Pancini … er, Mancini!

Read more
Youth Music
2:33 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Local High Schools Headed To National Jazz Competition

Flickr Photo/Arild Nybø (CC BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman speaks with Matt Wenman, director of Mount Si High School's band program in Snoqualmie, about winning one of 15 spots in Jazz at Lincoln Center's prestigious Essentially Ellington competition. Roosevelt and Garfield high schools are also headed to compete in New York.

Jazz Performance
9:00 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Chick Corea: "Darn That Dream"

Chick Corea and Marcie Sillman
KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

Chick Corea plays "Darn That Dream"

Pianist and composer Chick Corea has touched almost all the musical bases during a career that has spanned almost five decades.  From avant garde to bebop to Latin fusion, Corea has experimented and mastered multiple jazz styles and has won a loyal following of fans and critics.

Marcie Sillman interviews Chick Corea

Read more
Playing In Tune
7:47 am
Thu April 11, 2013

Seattle Inventor Finds Key To Solving Saxophone Discord

University of Washington saxophone professor Michael Brockman is the inventor of the Broctave Key.
Courtesy University of Washington

There’s an old joke among saxophone players: The instrument, they say, comes from the factory out of tune.  Dr. Michael Brockman is a professor of saxophone at the University of Washington. He actually thinks the saxophone can be tuned, and he’s determined to do something about it. 

Read more