• My Story: Nina Simone

    July 30, 2009. Posted by Simon Rentner.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Jazz Alive

    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.

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  • Terence Blanchard, Live from New Orleans

    July 30, 2009. Posted by David Tallacksen.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Live Music

    Trumpeter Terence Blanchard and his quintet performs Friday night at 8:30pm EDT. Why the mention of time zone? Because he's performing at the Ogden Museum of Art in New Orleans. It's the same space he recorded his latest album, and it's an amazing building - currently in the midst of a huge renovation. The walls just ooze history. Check out some photos of the space below - where we're setting up lighting, cameras (for documentary shooting), and of course space for an audience. Join us tomorrow night at 8:30pm on 88.3fm in New York and right here online for audio and video!

  • Louis Armstrong House Slides

    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.