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Jazz Music Radio

Musicians from Havana and New Orleans would take the twice-daily ferry between both cities to perform, and the habanera quickly took root in the musically fertile Crescent City. Female jazz performers and composers have contributed to jazz throughout its history. Women began playing instruments in jazz in the early 1920s, drawing particular recognition on piano.

See media help.In 1919, Kid Ory’s Original Creole Jazz Band of musicians from New Orleans began playing in San Francisco and Los Angeles, where in 1922 they became the first black jazz band of New Orleans origin to make recordings. In Ohio and elsewhere in the mid-west the major influence was ragtime, until about 1919. Around 1912, when the four-string banjo and saxophone came in, musicians began to improvise the melody line, but the harmony and rhythm remained unchanged. A contemporary account states that blues could only be heard in jazz in the gut-bucket cabarets, which were generally looked down upon by the Black middle-class. The Original Dixieland Jass Band made the music’s first recordings early in 1917, and their “Livery Stable Blues” became the earliest released jazz record.

Louis Armstrong’s bold, operatic trumpet sound made him jazz’s first major improvising soloist, and his recordings with his Hot Five and Hot Seven are perhaps the pinnacle of jazz in the ‘20s. They would be backed by a rhythm section of banjo or piano, double bass or tuba and drums. This familiar song wraps up the playlist, which was later made more popular by the London jazz-rap group Us3, from the album The Definitive Herbie Hancock. A jazz legend in his own right, this pianist once toured with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers and taught at prestigious Berklee College of Music. He continues to perform all over the world and now teaches aspiring musicians at the University of Tennessee.

It received some criticism, however, for its failure to reflect the many distinctive non-American traditions and styles in jazz that had developed, and its limited representation of US developments in the last quarter of the 20th century. Pianist Keith Jarrett—whose bands of the 1970s had played only original compositions with prominent free jazz elements—established his so-called ‘Standards Trio’ in 1983, which, although also occasionally exploring collective improvisation, has primarily performed and recorded jazz standards. Chick Corea similarly began exploring jazz standards in the 1980s, having neglected them for the 1970s. O.T.B. ensemble included a rotation of young jazz musicians such as Kenny Garrett, Steve Wilson, Kenny Davis, Renee Rosnes, Ralph Peterson Jr., Billy Drummond, and Robert Hurst.

Students can attend a wide variety of performances both on-campus and off, and networking with a community of professional musicians provides opportunities in both performance and recording. March 25, 2021 • Jazz Night in America profiles multi-dimensional pianist and composer Myra Melford, who takes us on a musical journey across the spectrum, from the avant-garde to the blues. There’s no better place to hear jazz than in the city that first gave rise to it. Take in traditional New Orleans jazz in the French Quarterand onFrenchmen Street!

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