WBGO Blog
  • Celebrate WBGO's 35th Birthday with Chick Corea

    March 6, 2014. Posted by Brandy Wood.

    In April, WBGO will celebrate its 35th anniversary with many opportunities to participate, listen, learn and enjoy jazz. On April 10, the day after WBGO's birthday, we invite an intimate group to join us at Town Hall in Times Square for a wonderful concert and post-show meet-and-greet with the artist, Chick Corea.

    When the legendary artist Chick Corea recorded Piano Improvisations on the ECM label in 1971, he was the first jazz pianist of his era to release such a recording. This groundbreaking album literally opened the floodgates to a new genre of solo piano that continues strong today.

    In 2014, Chick will be releasing a new solo CD and embarking upon a world tour with a presentation that is as fresh and innovative as ever. With a perfect balance of in-the-moment improvisation, Corea Classics, jazz standards, classical renderings and the inimitable “Children’s Songs,” it is a must-see concert if there ever was one.

    The title of the CD, Portraits, derives from something Chick occasionally includes in his solo shows — when the spirit moves him. The artist asks for volunteers from the typically packed house, sits them down one at a time next to the piano and proceeds to paint a musical “portrait” unique to each individual. It’s uncanny how the personality of the person is captured in Chick’s improvisations.

    It’s pure Chick Corea spirit of play. Come see for yourself, and celebrate 35 years of the greatest jazz radio station on earth!

    Limited WBGO meet-and-greet, premium seating available. Book your tickets today.

    Book your Tickets:

    WBGO Member price per person: $125
    Non-Member price per person: $150
    All tickets will be picked up at the theater.


    Tickets




    For more information, or to pay by check or credit card via the phone you can email events@wbgo.org or call 973-624-8880 x283.

  • Playdate With Matt Wilson: Preview of Show Five, 3/4/14

    March 3, 2014. Posted by Alex Ariff.

    PlaydateBannerUpdated

    Playdate is WBGO's new series of highlights from our archive of live recordings. Tune in Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. to hear Show #5, a celebration of the music of New Orleans, with Wynton Marsalis, Queen Ida, Lester Bowie and Brass Fantasy, and more!

    Miss a previous Playdate? Head to WBGO.ORG/PLAYDATE to stream Show #1, Show #2, Show #3, Show #4, and explore music extras and stories for every episode.

    We’ve already posted on Wayne Shorter, The Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra, Ruth Brown, Sun Ra, Dorthaan Kirk, Chick Corea with Gary Burton, The "Salsa Meets Jazz" Series, Joe Henderson, The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, Max Roach, Dexter Gordon, and JazzSet’s coast-to-coast adventures.

    One highlight of this week's show is vocalist Bobby McFerrin with the New Orleans band Astral Project, as recorded at Cain Park in Cleveland Heights, Ohio in 1999.

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    McFerrin, (center) with Astral Project's James Singleton and Tony Dagradi

    The concert was a kind of reunion - in the 1970s, McFerrin visited New Orleans and sat in with the band - on piano - at The Old Absinthe Bar on Bourbon Street. That led to a 5-month tour with the band, during which he began to experiment with some of the innovative vocal techniques that have now become his signature style.

    Can't wait to hear this great combination? Head over to WBGO.ORG/PLAYDATE, where you can hear McFerrin and Astral Project perform Don Cherry's "Mahakali" and read more about this concert.

    And tune in on Tuesday to hear more from this group and other surprises on WBGO's Playdate!

  • Michael Bourne's Favorite Interviews

    March 1, 2014. Posted by Brandy Wood.

    What are Michael Bourne's favorite interviews from his three decades at WBGO? We asked the host of Afternoon Jazz, Blues Hour and Singers Unlimited to share these with us, as we prepare to celebrate our 35th anniversary. Enjoy!

    I've interviewed countless musicians and others through my going-on-30 years as a jock on WBGO.  Maybe a thousand?  Maybe two thousand -- if you count the 25-a-day I've sometimes talked with at conferences or festivals we've broadcast from.  I've loved especially broadcasting from my favorite festival, Festival International de Jazz de Montreal.

    This year being FIJM's 35th and WBGO's 35th, you can expect a more exciting broadcast than ever as the world's best jazz festival (sez me) and the world's best jazz radio station (sez everybody) celebrates together.

    Who've been my favorite interviews for WBGO?  So many of my favorite artists:

    Bourne Bennett

    Tony Bennett at WBGO, parts 1 and 2

    Tony in Montreal

    Dave Brubeck, at his home in Connecticut

    Paquito D'Rivera

    Cleo Laine & John Dankworth

    Claire Martin

    Diana Krall

    Ian Shaw

    Manhattan Transfer

    Barbara Carroll

    Robert Klein

    And from the Blues Hour:

    Marcia Ball

    Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi

    Other greats come to mind from before our era of on-demand everything - Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Williams, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gatemouth Brown, Little Milton...

    Several generations of jazz artists have come along in the years since WBGO came on the air.

    We're still (and always will be) playing Ella and Sarah, Dizzy and Miles, but in this last 35 years along came some new one-name-only singers and players: Kurt and Cassandra, Wynton and Branford -- and they're now an older generation.

    Our annual JAM-fest (Jazz Appreciation Month Festival) in April is a spotlight on the newest generation, some of the best and brightest newcomers from schools in NJ, NY, and down from Boston.

    When you hear them playing live on WBGO, you're hearing the future of jazz… and of the station.