Though she didn't call it third stream, and it wasn't associated with the genre, Hazel Scott was another musician who found a successful way to blend jazz and classical influences. Scott took classical selections and improvised on them, a practice dating back to the ragtime era. Such numbers as "Hungarian Rhapsody, no. 2" (Liszt) backed by "Valse in D Flat Major, op. 64 no. 1" (Chopin) were audience favorites, even if some critics suggested they smacked of gimmickry (which sometimes they did).
Scott was also a good bebop soloist, nice ballad interpreter, fair blues player, and underrated vocalist. Her nightclub act was often more appealing than her albums, where the absence of mitigating circumstances like an audience and club setting resulted in her compositions getting more scrutiny than they could stand.
Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, on June 11, 1920, Hazel Scott studied...