Take Five

Joe Vericker/Liaison / Getty Images

This week, WBGO announcers take over Take Five with 12 — wait, make that a baker’s dozen — favorite holiday tracks. 

George Lederer

We know it can be hard to shop for the jazz fan in your life. Especially in this day and age — when so much of our music arrives in digital form, or through a streaming service. So in this Holiday Gift Guide edition of Take Five I gathered 15 new releases, from throwback to ultramodern, that are well worth savoring as physical objects. 

Danny Clinch

Thanksgiving is here — and with it, five new reasons to be thankful.

John Rogers

Take Five celebrates albums by five amazing drummers whose music defies stereotype.

Deneka Peniston

Take Five this week is packed with must-hear albums, just released or just ahead.

Jean-Baptiste Millot

From jazz and poetry to the plight of immigrants, Take Five looks at five new tunes that explore cultural currency in music.

Craig Lovell / Corbis via Getty Images

Feeling Good with WBGO — that's the theme of our fall fund drive, which kicks off this Friday. We'll be focusing on the music that makes our listeners feel good, and celebrating the ways that it brings us together. As a build-up to the drive, here's a special edition of Take Five featuring feel-good tracks curated by our announcers, ranging from throwback classics to hot-off-the-press new releases. 

Francis Wolff / Blue Note Records

Labor Day weekend is a time to honor our workers, and the spirit of industry they embody. Of course it also carries other connotations: backyard barbecues, furniture sales and family road trips, for starters.

When thinking about a Labor Day edition of Take Five, I decided to bypass the standard fare — like Cannonball Adderley's “Work Song,” which refers to a different set of circumstances than the one that this holiday commemorates. I looked instead to important jazz artists who were born this week in history, within several days of the holiday.

Adam Kissick / NPR

From the beginning, America's oldest jazz fête strove for a breadth of style. George Wein, the festival's cofounder and patriarch, used to say he wanted to present the full sweep of the music, "from J to Z." That doesn't mean Jay-Z, though a tradition of crossover inclusion goes all the way back to Chuck Berry, 60 years ago.

Jimmy Katz

In Take Five this week, some killer bassists step out front.

Gulnara Khamatova

There has always been something special about a good drummer-led band, and this installment of our weekly playlist features five new examples, spanning a galactic range of style.

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