Airs Thursday, September 18 at 8 p.m. While there are certain unmistakable similarities in the musicianship of the two siblings, the younger brother of Nat King Cole long ago emerged from the awesome shadow cast by his elder brother. In truth, his phrasing is far closer to that of Frank Sinatra or Billie Holiday than that of his brother, and his timing swings a little more.
Airs Thursday, June 12 at 8 p.m. The many songs that came from the Broadway theatre, Hollywood movies, and Tin Pan Alley have always been a vital part of the repertoire of jazz musicians, who turned many of them into jazz standards. In this episode, we listen to more swingin' standards performed by Bucky Pizzarelli, Howard Alden, Wycliffe Gordon, and the Marcus Roberts trio, among others in this 2007 SMF recording.
Airs Thursday, December 13 at 9:00 p.m. Tune in to hear banjoist Bela Fleck with pianist Marcus Roberts and his trio, live from Savannah in their debut performance together. The history of the banjo in jazz dates back to the earliest ensembles of the 20th century in New Orleans, when banjo players were occasionally the star of the band. Over the next 100 years, however, the banjo changed within American musical culture, gradually falling out of favor as a primary instrument within a jazz band. In the spring of 2011, the Savannah Music Festival premiered a project featuring banjoist Bela Fleck with pianist Marcus Roberts and his trio. The results proved that the banjo has always been a wonderful solo instrument in jazz, particularly in the hands of a great improvisor like Bela Fleck. Tune in to hear Marcus Roberts on piano, Jason Marsalis on drums, Rodney Jordan on bass and Bela Fleck on banjo, live from Savannah in their debut performance.