• Live at the Village Vanguard: Gerald Clayton Trio

    February 10, 2010. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Watch and hear us live from the Village Vanguard at 9pm tonight. Join the chat below.

    Watch live streaming video from wbgo at livestream.com

  • The Blues of The River

    February 5, 2010. Posted by Simon Rentner.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Jazz Alive

    Baaba Maal produces a music festival – The Blues of the River – every year in his hometown, Podor, a small village on the northern tip of Senegal, West Africa.  For the opportunity to meet Maal, I traveled over 10 hours by car from Dakar, and then waited an entire day for the chance to speak with him.  My interview was only 20 minutes, but it was well worth it.  My feature about his Blues of the River Festival aired on WBGO's Journal.  If you missed it, click below.   – Simon Rentner

  • Christian McBride: The Movement Revisited at Juilliard

    February 5, 2010. Posted by Becca Pulliam.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Jazz Alive


    Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. -- each is a voice in the Christian McBride oratorio The Movement Revisited.  I saw the performance on February 2 with the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra with Choir, McBride on bass and leading the orch, and arranger J. D. Steele conducting the choir. They are charismatic and so are the Juilliard performers who stirred the room (full house at The Peter J. Sharp Theater). And sent me running home to track down a couple of quotes. One is from Ali -- "better to be in jail fed than to be in Vietnam dead" (1966). And the other is the phrase "by any means necessary" from Malcolm X in 1965. In The Mvt Rev, the phrase is in the context of the clearly-reasoned Malcolm X speech. Yet the way I remember the 60s, that phrase stood on its own. Christian's music shifted from gospel for Parks to Coltrane-inspired for Malcolm to funk for Ali (where CMcB's bass & the orchestra took off) to a climactic anthem with a riff for King. The young man who recited the "I Have A Dream" speech truly shone. I think he is Corey Hawkins. Someone confirm that please. J. D. Steele, the prolific vocal arranger, is out of Minnesota and a great asset. There will be two pfmnces in Michigan -- February 13 in Ann Arbor with the U of M Jazz Ensemble, Christian McBride Band and Detroit Jazz Festival Orchestra under the direction of Dennis Wilson, and February 14 at Second Ebenezer Church in Detroit, produced by the Detroit Jazz Festival.