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WRTI Celebrates 100 Years of Charlie Parker

Wikipedia Commons, William P. Gottlieb
Portrait of Charlie Parker, August, 1947, in The Three Deuces, NYC, with Miles Davis in background

Whether you call him Bird, Yardbird, or Parker, saxophonist and composer Charlie Parker—in his short life of 34 years—became a towering presence in the jazz world. Join WRTI as we mark the centennial of his birth with a weeklong celebration of his music, life, and legacy, beginning Monday, August 24th. We'll have special programming leading up to his birthday on Saturday, August 29th, and through the weekend.

WRTI Jazz will bring you music from the man himself, his different groups, configurations and collaborations. Our hosts will also play other artists' interpretations of the music of Parker, including tunes from this week's Jazz Album of the Week from Champian Fulton, and music from The Smoke Sessions release, Bird At 100.

Keep an eye out for messages from our jazz hosts! They are excited to tell you about their favorite Charlie Parker songs, and why they love them so much. 

Bob Perkins is sure to bring you some of Parker's works that include a young Miles Davis, and plenty of Bird with Strings

On Late Evening Jazz, Miss Blue will provide many different shades of Bird, from the tunes that lean Latin, to his work with The Quintet. On Nouveau Jazz Showcase, you'll hear the young blood of the jazz scene playing Parker.

Jukebox Jazz's Ryan Gottlieb will highlight many different artists, through the years, playing Bird's songs, and Bird dipping into well-known hits.

On Sunday, August 30th, Bob Craig is marking his 500th episode of Big Band Jazz, and he can't think of a better way to celebrate than to continue the Parker party. Tune in at 7 PM as Bob brings you Bird through the years. From the 1940s when Parker was playing Latin rhythms with Machito, through his large orchestras in the 1950s, you'll get the best of Bird's big band work. Be sure to celebrate with Bob for his 500th, as he observes Charlie Parker's 100th.