Mary Halvorson

John Rogers / For NPR

Before Mary Halvorson became the critic's choice for jazz guitar, she was excelling as a biology student at Wesleyan University, until she met one formidable professor.


Kelly Jensen Photography

Whatever else you have going on, you should hear some live music this week.

Jazz musicians are forever adept at taking the old and making it new. That skill is on brilliant display in Take Five this week, notably on a remake of a tune first heard on a Miles Davis album in 1963. You'll also hear a spin on a rustic old fiddle tune, and an emulation of Ornette Coleman's melodic language — a reminder that "new" can be as much a state of mind as a place in time.