WBGO Blog
  • WBGO JAM Live 2015: Rutgers University Jazz Ensemble I

    March 31, 2015. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    The Rutgers University Jazz Ensemble I performs live at WBGO for Jazz Appreciation Month with vocalist Champian Fulton. Click below to hear this concert, and tune in to 88.3 FM to hear this group featured on air during the first week of April. A full set list is below.

    Every week in April, WBGO-FM will showcase a different student ensemble with vocalists who performed live in our studios for Jazz Appreciation Month. All of these full sets will be available online. Enjoy!

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    The Rutgers University Jazz Ensemble I

    live at WBGO 3/6/15

    Conrad Herwig, director

    "Deed I Do" (by Fred Rose with lyrics by Walter Hirsch, arranged by Ernie Wilkins)

    "Let’s Do It" (by Cole Porter)

    "Easy Living" (by Ranger & Robin, arranged by Marc Stasio)

    "The Song Is You" (by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II, arranged by Gerald Wilson)

    "They Didn’t Believe Me" (by Jerome Kern and Herbert Reynolds, arranged by Dave Burger)

    Vocals on all songs by Champian Fulton

    Jimmy Merchant, Sax-Alto
    Oliver Santana Rivera, Sax-Alto
    Sam Tobias, Sax-Bari
    Abraham Burton, Sax-Tenor
    John Donathan, Sax-Tenor

    Guest sax on “The Song Is You” and “They Didn’t Believe Me” by Stephen Fulton

    Gregory DeAngelis, Trombone
    Matthew Echols, Trombone
    Timothy Rechen, Trombone
    Ben Weisiger, Trombone

    Devenny Bennett, Trumpet
    Shawn Edmonds, Trumpet
    Anthony Fazio, Trumpet
    Yi-JIUN Kao, Trumpet
    Joshua Orr, Trumpet

    John Morrison, Guitar
    John Nunez, Guitar
    Michael Bernabe, Piano
    Luciano Minetti, Piano

    Ross Garlow, Bass
    Christopher Smith, Bass
    Kyle Duppstadt, Drums
    Daniel Giannone, Drums

  • Paquito D'Rivera on "Aires Tropicales": Listen Now

    March 24, 2015. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    Paquito D'Rivera talks with Gary Walker about his "Around The Americas" concerts March 27-28 at Jazz At Lincoln Center, and forthcoming CD "Aires Tropicales," both of which which explore the legacy of African music across the hemisphere. Enjoy!

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  • WBGO In South Africa 1: Lesedi Cultural Village

    March 22, 2015. Posted by Simon Rentner.

    We did it! Rhonda Hamilton, twenty-five lucky WBGO members and I are super-excited to be in the Rainbow Nation, South Africa.

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    This is the first peek at our adventures, so buckle in and enjoy the ride!

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    Our first stop: Lesedi Cultural Village. "Lesedi" means "place of light" in Basotho, one of South Africa's main tribal languages.

    This UNESCO World Heritage Site is in the heart of South Africa's characteristic bushveld and rocky hills, about 50 kilometers northwest of Johannesburg. It offers a peek into the lifestyles of the Basotho, Zulu, Xhosa, Pedi, and Ndebele tribes.

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    Our charismatic tour guide gives us a quick lesson in Zulu, the dominant ethnic group in South Africa - about 80 percent of the population.

    He also explains that in some tribes, a man is allowed more than one wife - depending on how many cows he owns.  Our WBGO group is more women than men, but we all scoff when our guide says one powerful Zulu leader had sixty wives.

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    One of the highlights, or should I say, “high sights” of our tour is this tall gentleman, who stands guard in front of Lesedi's Zulu village. On cue, we collectively chant a request for entry, in the Zulu tongue.  He grants our request.

    Some of the ladies linger and repeat this exercise; I hear one of them say, “That fine man can guard my village any day of the week.”

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    Our guide offers us a staple dish, which may surprise many Westerners.  Caterpillars!   Yes, these creepy crawlers are very high in protein, rooty, and can be delicious when sautéed with onions and peppers.

    Most in our group decide to pass on this culinary adventure - but I can say these salty, chewy treats can be good - as long as you erase the image of a creepy crawler from your mind.

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    Our first adventure ends with a thunderous bang – a show-stopping performance of rhythm, song, and dance by the village's folkloric dance troupe. To watch a video of this, click on the image above.

    The Lesedi Village shows us “the light” of how our recent, and maybe even our ancient, ancestors lived, in the Cradle of Humankind. It should be noted that this locale has produced some of the oldest hominid fossils ever found, some dating back as far as 3.5 million years.

    Yes, we’ve arrived in The Motherland, indeed.  And we can’t wait to see more!