Marian McPartland is one of the most recognized spokespeople of jazz music, partly due to the popularity of her radio show, Piano Jazz, on National Public Radio. This edition, with Teddy Wilson, one of the most widely renowned pianists of the swing era, was recorded in November of 1978.
Wilson was a follower of Earl Hines' "trumpet" style piano playing. His brilliance and dynamism on the keys is captivating. Leading off this disc is an outstanding "Stompin' at the Savoy." He also contributes a delightful "Traumerie." There are a couple of medleys (Ellington’s "Sophisticated Lady" and "Don’t Get Around Much" as elegant and stellar as Ellington, himself, and Strayhorn’s "Lush Life/Take the A Train" is thrilling) and duets with McPartland ("I’ll Remember April" and "Flying Home") that beautifully illustrate his ideas about how the way jazz is played and improvisation in conjunction with other musicians.
This recording gives an interesting perspective on the swing era music scene with historical anecdotes as well as insight into style and technique. Their conversation runs the gamut from early collaborations with Benny Goodman to views and advice about performance anxiety, but does not become too tedious for the listener. Peppered with vibrant musical interludes, this disc proves to be "a must have" for jazz pianists, collectors and just about any "students" of jazz music.