Marian McPartland asked her friend Elvis Costello to sit in as guest host for this episode of Piano Jazz. The session features New Orleans legend Allen Toussaint, who sings and plays his hit tune “Southern Nights” and performs a duet with Costello on the pair’s recent collaboration “Ascension Day.”
Listener Melanie Cowart says things were rarely easy for her parents — one of whom was black and one white — in Depression-era Missouri. Porter’s “Begin the Beguine,” one of their favorite songs, became a fitting symbol of their relationship.
From a traditional blessing to a children’s dance, the program returns to the main Fort Adams stage of the 2011 Newport Jazz Festival. Hear a violin address the African diaspora — and a trumpet tell a bedtime story.
The recent announcement of the semifinalists for jazz’s most prestigious contest left several musicians at unease. Thus, a debate was launched on the nature of music contests, and with it, perhaps a vision of a future beyond them.