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Nat Cole Centennial, Mardi Gras & Jazz Birthdays

Monday, March 4

Night Train kicks off the March feature celebrating the centennial birthday of Nat ‘King’ Cole with one of his classics and music from his brother Freddy Cole – plus new releases featuring  Al Hood & the H2Jazztet, Charlie Haden with Brad Mehldau, and John Scofield, and birthday salutes to Norwegian world jazz saxophonist Jan Garbarek, and Crescent City drummer Jason Marsalis (including a Savannah Music Festival special in hour two with Marsalis as part of the Marcus Roberts Trio with special guest Bela Fleck).

Tuesday, March 5

Night Train teams up with Global Village and Strange Currency to celebrate Fat Tuesday with music from the Crescent City. We’ll hear Louis Armstrong, Jon Batiste, Delfeayo and his father Ellis Marsalis, the Grammy nominated Mardi Gras funk group Cha Wa, Donald Harrison and more in hour one – and a special about two legends of early New Orleans jazz, Sidney Bechet and Jelly Roll Morton, in hour two of the show.

Wednesday, March 6

Night Train continues the March Nat Cole feature with music from one of Diana Krall’s early releases that was a tribute to his trio. We’ll also hear new music from Al Muirhead (on the rarely heard bass trumpet), guitarist Lindsey Blair, and the Humanity Quartet (one of the releases marking the return of critically acclaimed drummer Leon Parker) - and also mark birthdays of singer Flora Purim, guitarist Wes Montgomery, and Western Swing great Bob Wills (including a special about Wills in hour two of the show.)

Thursday, March 7

Night Train highlights pianists tonight – including a rare track with soul jazz organist Dr. Lonnie Smith on piano; contemporary players including Brad Mehldau (with Pat Metheny), Chick Corea, Hans Ludemann, Yoko Miwa, Spike Wilner, and Mike Longo; and classic tracks from such jazz legends as Tommy Flanagan, McCoy Tyner, Joanne Brackeen and Marian McPartland.