In honor of April, which is Jazz Appreciation Month , LRSmedia is debuting starting today the television show Legends of Jazz Presents the 2007 NEA Jazz Masters as a special webcast premiere in conjunction with the entire online jazz community. This one-hour television special, soon to come to your local PBS station hosted by 2007 NEA Jazz Master Ramsey Lewis on his Legends of Jazz program, will feature conversation and musical performances by bandleader and pianist Toshiko Akiyoshi, trombonist Curtis Fuller, vocalist Jimmy Scott, flutist Frank Wess, and saxophonist Phil Woods. Special guest and co-host Nancy Wilson will interview Ramsey Lewis about his music, 50-year career and his selection as an NEA Jazz Master. The special is co-produced by LRSmedia and Chicago's WTTW National Productions. It is filmed in state-of-the-art high definition.
The NEA Jazz Masters Awards are the highest honors that the U.S. government bestows upon jazz musicians and are given in recognition of the jazz—one of America's greatest gifts to the world. As Lewis says, "This special 2007 NEA Jazz Masters program, like the others in our Legends of Jazz series, provides not only exciting performances, but showcases that unique energy sparked when great artists respond to each other in conversation and through music."
In conjunction with Jazz Appreciation Month, LRSmedia is making the program available to websites around the world. More than 50 websites will participate in this amazing online event by embedding a video player on their website. Unfortunately, the embedded player requires too wide a berth to host on my site, so you'll have to travel to the Legends of Jazz site to watch the show by clicking on the image below. Or you can wait until it's on television...its up to you.