WBGO Blog
  • WBGO & 2 Gateway Center presents Free Jazz Concert

    April 8, 2013. Posted by Carmen Balentine.

    Picture 3WBGO Jazz 88.3FM & 2 Gateway Center presents
    Maurício de Souza’s Bossa Brasil®
    Friday, April 12th
    12:00-1:15pm
    Gateway Center - 2 Gateway Center Lobby
    Newark, NJ

    This free lunch time concert will be hosted by WBGO Music Director and host of Morning Jazz, Gary Walker. During the performance Newark Freeholder Gerald Owens will present a proclamation to WBGO, which will be received by WBGO Board of Trustees member Ron Andrews.  The band will feature: Maurício de Souza (drums), Sharel Cassity (alto sax), Dave Ellson (vibes), John Lee (bass).

  • WBGO JAM Live: NJCU Cedar Walton Combo

    April 2, 2013. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    The New Jersey City University Cedar Walton Combo performed live in the WBGO studios, the first in our series of student ensembles in honor of Jazz Appreciation Month. Click to hear audio from this concert, and at the bottom of the page for all of our 2013 JAM Student Festival broadcasts.

    The ensemble, directed by Nate Eklund and Ed Joffe, NJCU's director of jazz studies, is Barry Spatz on piano, Anthony Perez on bass, Ramsey Norman on drums, Martin Moretto on guitar and Neil Johnson on tenor saxophone.

    The group's members performed their own arrangements of compositions by Cedar Walton and Thelonious Monk, and were interviewed between songs by host Michael Bourne. A full set list is below. Enjoy this live performance, and all of our broadcasts with the next generation of jazz greats on air and online all April as we celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month!

    New Jersey City University Cedar Walton Combo

    live at WBGO 4/1/13

    Hindsight

    by Cedar Walton, arranged by the group

    solos: Neil Johnson, Barry Spatz, Ramsey Norman

    Clockwise

    by Cedar Walton, arranged by Ramsey Norman

    solos: Barry Spatz, Neil Johnson, Anthony Perez

    Off Minor

    by Thelonious Monk, arranged by Barry Spatz

    solos: Neil Johnson, Barry Spatz, Anthony Perez

    Bolivia

    by Cedar Walton, arranged by Barry Spatz and Neil Johnson

    solos: Neil Johnson, Barry Spatz

    Ojos de Rojo

    by Cedar Walton, arrange by Anthony Perez

    solos: Martin Moretto, Neil Johnson

    I'll Let You Know

    by Cedar Walton, arranged by the group

    solo: Barry Spatz

    Midnight Waltz

    by Cedar Walton, arranged by Neil Johnson

    solos: Neil Johnson, Barry Spatz, Ramsey Norman

    All 2013 WBGO JAM Live Student Broadcasts

    4/1/13: NJCU Cedar Walton Combo

    4/8/13: Rutgers University Jazz Ensemble I

    4/12/13: William Paterson "Hawk Flies" Jazz Septet

    4/15/13: Berklee Ralph Peterson Sextet

    4/16/13: Juilliard Jazz Artist Diploma Ensemble

    4/17/13: New School For Jazz Improv Ensemble

    4/18/13: MSM Chamber Jazz Ensemble

    4/19/13: LaGuardia High School Senior Band

    4/23/13: SUNY Purchase Super Sophomores

    4/24/13: NYU Karachacha Afro-Peruvian Ensemble

    4/25/13: Queens College International Jazz Band

  • Dan Morgenstern's Career: An Eyewitness to Jazz

    April 27, 2012. Posted by Simon Rentner.

    Nobody doubts Dan Morgenstern’s storied life. His 8 Grammy awards, NEA Jazz Master honors, and other laurels back up this fact. But when we see him at WBGO – every time he co-hosts Jazz from The Archives – we witness his character. All of the awards and compliments in the world could never turn him into a blowhard. His friends and close peers all know about his sensitivity in his writings and compassion for his subjects, and they also rely on his insight and analysis.

    Dan Morgenstern
    Dan Morgenstern

    That lightness of being is reflected in WBGO’s recording studio, the way he smiles, bobs his head, and dances to the music he plays on the radio.  His enthusiasm for jazz is “Olympic” in its brightness and scope.  His work ethic -- unyielding.  The torch within just keeps burning, and he passes all of that fire and knowledge to the next person so effortlessly.

    As Morgenstern prepared to step down from his longtime role as director of the Instutitute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University-Newark's Dana Library, he sat down with me in our studios for an extended conversation. We talked about his childhood, growing up Jewish during World War II.  He hesitatingly talks about when he was saved by the Danish how that experience shaped him.

    He also talked about his early musical encounters, one with composer Albam Berg, who befriended Morgenstern’s father.  And, he shared the epiphanous moment that changed his life, the moment he saw Fats Waller.  He also spoke candidly about being the editor of Down Beat Magazine in the 1960s, when America was being torn apart by civil rights unrest, and how he, as “Mr. Whitey” – was perceived by some as a symbol of America’s institutional racism.

    His story, as rich as it is layered, is well worth telling and hearing. And it may be fully told one day.   Now that he’s stepped down from the IJS, he told me, he may find time to write that autobiography.

    In the meantime, Dan, thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, so we can share them with our listeners here. We featured a segment of our conversation on Friday's WBGO Journal, and are happy to share our conversation in its entirety with you now. Enjoy! – Simon Rentner