• Choo Choo Boogaloo: Jazz For Trains

    March 1, 2011. Posted by Simon Rentner.

    Panel No. 1 from Jacob Lawrence, The Migration Series. The panel is titled: "During World War I there was a great migration north by southern African Americans." (Image Credit: Courtesy of The Phillips Collection)

    Locomotives churning across America's vast open landscape provided plenty of fuel for jazz composers in the early 20th century. Railroads symbolized freedom, escape and opportunity for countless musicians, many of whom lived a vagabond lifestyle, always in pursuit of the next gig.

    During the Great Migration, millions of African-Americans packed their belongings and moved north by train in hopes of finding work. So it's only natural that train travel has historically occupied many black artists' imagination, perhaps most vividly in painter Jacob Lawrence's Migration Series, pieces of which can be seen at The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.

    Over the years, hundreds of blues, folk and jazz songs have been dedicated to the allegory of the locomotive. Here are some of my favorites.

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  • Morning Cup of Jazz 3/1/11

    March 1, 2011. Posted by Alex Rodriguez.

    Today at WBGO:

    - The Checkout features saxophonist Patrick Cornelius and more, airing at 6:30.

    - At 7:30, Latino USA tackles the recent legislation targeting undocumented immigrants.

    - Download the latest edition of our program guide, Upbeat.

    Recent Jazzlinks:

    - Alex W. Rodriguez has been blogging from the Portland Jazz Festival. Scroll through the WBGO blog to read his latest updates -- today is his last day out west.

    - Part Two of The Checkout's broadcast of "Houstonians in NYC" from 92Y Tribeca is available online

    - Click through to learn more about today's jazz happenings: Read more

  • WBGO Celebrates Women's History Month with Women in Jazz

    March 1, 2011. Posted by Brandy Wood.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Jazz Alive

    March is Women’s History Month and WBGO has many programs highlighting women in jazz.  Tune in to Jazz 88.3FM for all of the listings below, or come out for the Monday Night with WBGO at the end of the month.

    Podcast available now
    WBGO’s Josh Jackson talks to Christine Jensen about her new big band recording, Treelines (Justin Time).

    Thursday, March 3, 6:30pm
    Ladies of Song with guest host Murray Horowitz
    From Sarah Vaughan and Rosemary Clooney to Diana Krall and Norah Jones, Piano Jazz celebrates Women's History Month with the joy and beauty that women singers have brought to the Great American Songbook.

    Saturday, March 5, 6am
    A Woman’s Touch: Celebrating Women Composers in Jazz
    Ever heard of Beth Slater Whitson and Kay Swift? Maybe not, but you’ve heard their compositions, “Fine and Dandy” and “Meet Me Tonight in Dreamland,” all jazz standards today. This week, The Jim Cullum Jazz Band tips their hat to the ladies with a jazz concert of tunes composed by women.

    Allen, Bridgewater, Spalding, Carrington, Kelly by Margot Schulman
    Allen, Bridgewater, Spalding, Carrington, Kelly by Margot Schulman

    Sunday, March 6, 6pm & Wednesday, March 9, 6:30pm
    The Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz All-Stars at the Kennedy Center
    One time only! Dee Dee Bridgewater, altoist Grace Kelly (in her teens), pianist Geri Allen, bassist Esperanza Spalding, and drummer Terri Lyne Carrington jam like there’s no tomorrow on Mary Lou’s music and more.

    “Allen's orchestral designs, sublime examples of keyboard coloring and dynamics, allowed the ensemble to display winning finesse amid improvised tangents, heated exchanges and terrifically vibrant collaborations with Bridgewater.” (Mike Joyce, Washington Post)
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