July 30, 2009. Posted by Simon Rentner.
WBGO reached out to its devoted volunteers, and requested them to submit entries to our blog. Here's a story about the great Nina Simone by Judith Tatti. - Simon
When I listen to Nina Simone I thank God for having put someone on this earth who sings from a place where passion is nourished by spirit, and I understand why she is called the High Priestess of Soul.
I first heard Nina Simone when I was about sixteen. My boyfriend had albums by her and would listen to them often. At this time most of the kids I hung out with liked jazz and played the most popular jazz albums of the time, and Nina Simone’s albums were always being played.
In the New York area everyone who liked jazz listened to this radio program at night called Symphony Sid. Symphony Sid played jazz and Latin jazz all night, from ten at night until four in the morning. It was so cool. I remember sitting in someone’s car with the radio turned on listening to one great jazz song after another. Nina Simone had several hits that were aired on that show at that time.
Nina Simone has a sound like no other singer, and when you hear her arrangements they are unmistakably, uniquely hers. Her songs paradoxically demand your attention while at the same time heal and soothe you.
© 2009 WBGO
July 27, 2009. Posted by Grey Johnson.
Take a look at what fun we had when 60 WBGO Members visited the Louis Armstrong House Museum last Saturday. We were welcomed both by Michael Cogswell the Director of the Museum and by 86 year old Selma Heraldo, Louis and Lucille's next door neighbor! We snacked in the Armstrong's Japanese Garden (Louis convalesced there at the end of his life), saw an amazing exhibit of Louis's collages on recording tape boxes, and learned about the humility of this world-renowned star who was very happy in his Queens neighborhood and didn't need a fancy mansion on Long Island. After a wonderful tour (if you haven't been you really should go) we went off to Pio Pio Peruvian Chicken Restaurant nearby to stuff ourselves. Thanks to everyone who came and all who made this such a terrific day. If you were there, or would like to have been, leave a comment and record of what you saw or would like to see, on this blog.
© 2009 WBGO
July 24, 2009. Posted by Brandy Wood.
At the WBGO gallery reception for artist Chris Osborne, there were great friends, great performances, and a great treat in a surprise visit from the artist's friend...Tony Bennett!
Mr. Bennett said a few words, and Ms. Osborne presented everyone in attendance with a gift of one her posters. Her art work features jazz and blues legends with the classic automobiles of their era.
Chris Osborne's paintings will hang in the WBGO gallery until the end of July, then Hank O'Neals photos will go up.
Sign up for jazz-e-news so you can stay tuned for the next gallery reception. You never know who you'll see!
© 2009 WBGO