Marian McPhartland - A National Treasure

Marian McPhartland is in my opinion a national treasure,and as she now approaches her 90th birthday I think she should be acknowledged as one of the driving forces in jazz of the past century. Her NPR radio program is the longest running on NPR ever. As a jazz pianist she has few peers indeed. Someone once said about her. That she had three strikes against her,before she even got to bat and that was she's white, she's British and she's a woman. But with that being said she has managed to carve out an enviable career approached by few.

Shall we honor her now?
I couldn't have said it better.

Trivia -- in Art Kane's 1958 photo she stands between Oscar Pettiford and Mary Lou Williams. Sonny Rollins is in sunglasses right behind her.
Being English, whose national treasure is she? She gets huge points for being alowed to participate in the photo, "A great Day in Harlem." I think she's running out of great jazz performers to interview and play with on her show though.

About a year ago she had some fellow on and all he wanted to do was ask her questions about playing Duke and Bird. She was having trouble getting to talk about his music.
Oh, you are so right Ferrari. She is one of the best of all times. She plays with such emotion. You can feel each key stroke emotionally. She captivates you with her magic.
She has an extensive collection on Concord Jazz CD's. The LP's are very hard to find. Each one is miked very well and each recording is memorable.
I also love Marian McPartland. I listen to her show every Monday night on NPR. When she does leave this earth, and assuming that we still have FM radio and NPR, I would hope that NPR will continue to replay some of her "best of..." for many years thereafter.
If you don't know about it, listen to 85 Candles - Live in New York, recorded at Birdland in NYC on her 85th birthday. If you are an audiophile, there is stunning sound on this CD. If you are a music lover, many jazz men and women of renown, some who are up there in years, perform on this CD. Overall, a very satisfying CD and when you are in the mood to hear what your system can do, listen to "Lester Leaps In" and the Miles Davis tune, "All Blues". These are great, particularly if you like to hear horns played flat out.

I have heard her perform four or five times in the last 10 years at various clubs in New York. The last time was last year at the tribute to Oscar Peterson at Carnegie Hall. She can still play, but some of the virtuosity is leaving her due to age. One thing that I always liked about her playing that I really don't hear anyone else do in quite the same way was that she always has great chords and what Dave Brubeck describes as beautiful inner voices. I don't think by any means was she the greatest technical pianist out there, but she is unique in the way she plays and does great service to any piece that she plays in spotlighting the melody and the beauty.

Although I am no longer a regular listener to her NPR program because there are so many repeats, I have bought many CD's made from those programs. I can recommend many highly, including Dizzie Gillespie, Teddy Wilson, Lionel Hampton, Carmen McRae, Oscar Peterson, Shirley Horne, Dave Brubeck, Bill Evans, Milt Hinton and her favorite pianist, Mary Lou Williams. Some of these are great for the music, some are great for the music lesson, some are great for a composing lesson, some are great for the stories, the reminiscing and the conversation. She is an excellent interviewer and has the ability to put everyone at ease and, of course, like any great pianist, the ability to adapt her playing to nearly almost any situation and anyone else's playing or singing. Most of all, it is clear that she loves to play and that is infectious.

I have to admit that I bought my Marantz 10B tuner so that I could listen to her program with excellent fidelity.
I would be terribly remiss if I did not thank Ponnie for reminding me of Marian McPhartland a few weeks back and since that time I have managed to acquire some of her LPs as that is my favorite playback medium. The albums she did for Concord are spectacular such as "Personal Choice" and "From This Moment On"

Many thanks to Rayhall for the tip on the 85 Candles CD, I now have that ordered.

I have listen to her for many years now on NPR and have learned so much from her to further my appreciation of the jazz art form, one could not ask for more.
Ferrari, you must be a mind reader as I was thinking of posting a similar thread yesterday. She is simply phenomenal, and she and her show are a treasure that I think many audiophiles have enjoyed for years. (I started listening to her show in 6th grade...20 years later, I still tune in religiously.) Her show has been like a weekly master class in jazz history, and we should all be grateful.
It depends on the locations and the way they set up the microphones at those locations, but some of her shows I can imagine myself being right there from the realism.