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From the start of quarantine, author, photographer and Harvard professor @tejucole  has been compiling playlists in a "gesture of sharing music in a time of anxiety". Latest 'lifeline' features tracks by Billie Willie Johnson and Mary Lou Williams.

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The Mary Lou Williams album I've been listening to; binds earth and stars with a hushed, rapt strength; one of the few jazz albums that's like late Beethoven:

Feels like a good moment to pull to the fore the Mary Lou Williams playlist that I'd buried in the text of a piece:

No photograph more accurately depicts the golden age of jazz than Art Kane’s iconic “A Great Day in Harlem.” Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, Mary Lou Williams, and more. All in one photo. All in Harlem. This #BlackHistoryMonth , we celebrate this legacy.

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For the record, huge boxed sets needed: Andy Kirk & Mary Lou Williams with (and without) his band, late '20s to early '40s; the complete John Kirby Sextet (and briefly Septet).

Whenever I see mention of that upcoming film Little Joe, I think of this song by Mary Lou Williams, who's on piano along with Andy Kirk and his Twelve Clouds of Joy (with a short solo by the great tenor-sax player Dick Wilson):

Before settling in Harlem, Mary Lou Williams traveled the country playing with big bands. The road shaped her sound, and her theory of black music as "the greatest and only true art in the world."

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Mary Lou Williams is "the First Lady of Jazz." So at this year's Monterey Jazz Festival, musicians Allison Miller and Derrick Hodge are revisiting her work with imaginative instrumentation in a program titled "Soul on Soul."

Jazz helped Mary Lou Williams stay alive — but after several draining decades as a musician, she quit the scene. When she returned, she claimed her true power as one of jazz's fiercest advocates.

Mary Lou Williams was a musical prodigy from a young age, with no formal training. With more than 100 recordings to her credit, Williams wrote music for legendary bandleaders including Duke Ellington. and she was a teacher to jazz great Thelonious Monk. #JazzAppreciationMonth 

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For her long, endlessly inventive and astonishing career, Mary Lou Williams belongs at the center of our canon.

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The illustrated story of jazz pianist Mary Lou Williams, a pioneering woman of color

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The illustrated story of jazz pianist Mary Lou Williams, a pioneering woman of color

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Mary Lou Williams played better in her sixties than she ever did. In this regard, she’s unique in the history of jazz

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