Marian McPartland Named OBE

Marian McPartland, OBE

DL Media has announced that jazz pianist and NRP radio host Marian McPartland has been named Officer of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth at a ceremony on New Year’s Day.  The Order of the British Empire recognizes distinguished service to the arts and sciences as well as charity and other public services.

As anyone who has listened to the wizened McPartland hold court on her weekly NPR show, “Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz,” knows, the award appropriately mentions her “services to jazz and for aspiring young musicians in the United States.”  At 91, she still jams with her guests on dual pianos and routinely recounts her times with the legends of jazz including Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker and most others.  In a match of masters, I once saw her jam with Willie Nelson at Irving Plaza!

Her programs (featuring especially great Steely Dan and Elvis Costello interviews) are also available on cd.

A few of her other awards include a Peabody Award, the Gracie Allen Award given by American Women in Radio and Television and a Grammy Trustee’s Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Somehow, they stopped short of giving her the big title of Dame.  I have a feeling she had that one already… didn’t she know Bogey (through Sam)?

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