Getting Jazzed

Maria Eklind via Creative Commons Flickr

November 27, 2016

There's a new kind of music packing nightclubs with young fans. It's jazz - but not the sound of your grandparents' supper club. Infused with hip hop and other popular musical forms, jazz is being remade. We talk with some of today's biggest and most innovative jazz stars, including Esperanza Spalding and Vijay Iyer, and explore the magic of improvisation.

  1. Ecstatic Rhythm

    Ted Gioia was in high school when he first visited a jazz club and he realized instantly, "This is it! This is what I've been looking for." The experience changed his life and since then he's become a noted jazz critic and historian. Gioia's new book is "How to Listen to Jazz." He tells Anne Strainchamps that new collaborations with rappers and rockers are revitalizing today's jazz.

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  2. Leroi Jones' "Blues People"

    Alex Abramovich recommends "Blues People: Negro Music in White America" by Leroi Jones, who later changed his name to Amiri Baraka.

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  3. Esperanza Spalding's "Good Lava"

    Esperanza Spalding is one of the brightest young stars in jazz - except she resists being labeled a "jazz musician." In fact, her new album "Emily's D+ Evolution" sounds more like rock than jazz. When she sat down in our studio with Steve Paulson, she talked about her childhood roots in classical music before her momentous discovery of jazz improvisation.

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  4. Tord Gustavsen Recommends a Norwegian Jazz Classic

    Norway's acclaimed pianist Tord Gustavsen recommends another Norwegian classic, Masqualero's album "Bande a Part."

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  5. What Is Music?

    Celebrated jazz pianist Vijay Iyer has a Ph.D in music cognition and a penchant for asking big questions - like, what is music? And what does it do for us? Steve Paulson caught up with Vijay backstage before a recent concert, where they talked about improvisation and the parallels between jazz and basketball.

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