Savannah Music Festival LIVE 729 – Mark Shane

The great tradition of jazz piano in the early 20th century was probably best summarized by the father of stride piano, James P. Johnson, when he was asked which pianists he had learned things from in New York City. He responded by saying, “I loved Eubie Blake, Luckey Roberts, Willie the Lion Smith, and even Jelly Roll Morton. But I was getting around town and hearing everybody – it they had something I didn’t have, I listed and stole it, and then made it mine.” Johnson understood what all great artists in history have always done – they looked to other artists for inspiration and ideas, allowing for extension, elaboration and refinement of what came before them. In this episode, we listen to a program from Savannah Music Festival 2014 with Mark Shane, where he played music by many of the jazz pianists and composers from the early 20th century.