Don Cheadle stars as Miles Davis in the new film Miles Ahead.

Smithsonian Jazz Expert Gives Liner Notes to the New Miles Davis Biopic

The American History Museum's James Zimmerman dives into Miles Davis' sound and style

These 15th-century female musicians are clearly in grave medical danger.

Some 19th-Century Physicians Thought Music Could Infect the Brain

When it comes to music in the brain, medicine has come a long way

Revelers two-step at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

How Do You Dance to Jazz?

The attendees at this year's New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival taught our music writer a step or two

The legendary home base of blues pioneers.

Where the Blues Was Born

At Dockery Farms, the original bluesmen created a sound that would become legendary

Louis Armstrong playing in Rome in 1959. You can visit his house in Queens, New York, and see how he lived for the last 30 years of his life.

Where to Celebrate the History of American Jazz

These six spots are just a short riff on what makes the musical genre particular to the United States

Jazz singer Billie Holiday wears a large white flower in her hair for a performance in New York City.

What Makes Billie Holiday's Music So Powerful Today

Musicians including Cassandra Wilson pay homage to the jazz legend with new albums for Lady Day's 100th birthday

Billy Strayhorn playing piano in a home, May 26th,1952.

This New Collection of 12,000 Photographs Chronicles the American Jazz Scene

A donation from the family of photographer and historian Duncan Schiedt captures the music's "essence"

Depicted in Big Band are: Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Lionel Hampton, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Jerry Mulligan, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Lester Young, Glen Miller, Charles Mingus, JJ Johnson, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Wynton Marsalis and Gene Krupa.

LeRoy Nieman Pulled Together a Dream Band for His Epic Portrait of Jazz Greats

The iconic artist's large-scale painting of this century's music greats debuts at the American History Museum, kicking off Jazz Appreciation Month

Duke Ellington with his orchestra.

What to Listen to and Watch for When Enjoying Jazz

For Jazz Appreciation Month, a guide to understanding the nuances, subtleties and surprises of America's unique music

One of three instruments Coltrane would use as he blazed through the next two years, reinventing himself—and jazz music— at a pace many found exhausting.

Fifty Years Ago This Month, John Coltrane Recorded One of the Greatest Jazz Tracks of All Time

This Selmer Mark VI tenor saxophone was one of three instruments that John Coltrane played to reinvent himself—and Jazz music

Rosanne Cash on Discovering New Artistic Terrain

The singer-songwriter looked to her Southern ancestors to come up with a different kind of concept album

Chris Raschka's new children's book tells the true story of Sun Ra, an eccentric jazz musician.

There Once was a Jazz Musician Who Came Here from Saturn

Author and Illustrator Chris Raschka wants his new children's book to teach kids about the icons of jazz.

New to the collections: John Coltrane's 1965 Mark VI tenor saxophone

A Sax Supreme: John Coltrane's Legendary Instrument Joins the Collections of the American History Museum

Ravi Coltrane, son of jazz musicians John and Alice Coltrane, donates one of his father's three saxophones

John Coltrane (left) “took it further than any [other] tenor saxophone player,”  says photographer Chuck Stewart.

New Photos of John Coltrane Rediscovered 50 Years After They Were Shot

During the recording of A Love Supreme in 1964, Chuck Stewart caught the jazz legend in his element


How to Tour Louis Armstrong’s New Orleans

Jazz is synonymous with the Big Easy, and there’s no bigger name in the history of the genre than Satchmo

Esperanza Spalding has brought new life to jazz.

Esperanza Spalding Took on Bieber, Now Takes on Jazz

The innovative bassist and winner of the Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award for performing arts is taking jazz to a whole new place

Born in Lochgelly, Scotland in 1929, Temperley is America's oldest baritone sax artist, and one of the true anchors of the global jazz scene.

Joe Temperley’s Ageless Sax

The Scottish baritone saxophone musician recalls his 60-year career and the famous singers he’s accompanied

Randy Fertel takes friends on an insider tour that highlights New Orleans' "funky" soulfulness.

New Orleans Beyond Bourbon Street

From out-of-the-way jazz joints to po' boy shacks, a native son shares his favorite haunts in the Big Easy

Gene Krupa "stole Benny [Goodman]'s thunder," says Kennith Kimery, executive producer of the SMithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra. "In the end that cost him his job."

Gene Krupa: a Drummer with Star Power

Rising to fame with the Benny Goodman band, Gene Krupa was the first superstar drummer

"Jazz implicitly communicates some of the most cherished core values of our society," says John Edward Hasse.

The Smithsonian's Ambassador of Jazz

Music curator John Edward Hasse travels the globe teaching the genre that revolutionized American music

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