• WBGO Celebrates Blue Note's 75th Anniversary

    October 20, 2014. Posted by Brandy Wood.

    WBGO Presents: Our Point of View in their only East Coast Appearance
    December 12 at Le Poisson Rouge


    To commemorate WBGO’s 35th anniversary year, we are teaming up with Blue Note Records at the close of their 75th anniversary year to present the only East Coast appearance of the supergroup, Our Point of View. With a limited number of engagements in Monterey, Paris, London and New York City, the December 12, 2014 performance in support of WBGO will be the only opportunity for fans in the jazz capital to experience this historic group.

    Created in honor of Blue Note’s anniversary, Our Point of View celebrates the vitality of the label by looking ahead and bringing together the leading young artists on the Blue Note roster who steadfastly continue to move jazz forward. Featuring keyboardist Robert Glasper, trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, guitarist Lionel Loueke, saxophonist Marcus Strickland, and bassist Derrick Hodge with drummer Kendrick Scott, the band’s repertoire draws from each of these artists’ own remarkable catalogs as well new spins on Blue Note classics.

    The creative young voices of jazz have been the lifeblood of Blue Note Records since its formation in 1939—from Thelonious Monk and Herbie Hancock, to Freddie Hubbard and Joe Henderson—all of whom made their debut albums for the legendary label. Since WBGO’s inception in 1979, the station has been at the forefront of many brilliant jazz careers, including the members of this group, each of whom has performed in WBGO’s studio in Newark.

    Our Point of View
    Our Point of View

    December 12, 2014 ι Le Poisson Rouge

    In 2009, WBGO launched an innovative program entitled, The Checkout, which brought each of these musicians into our Newark studios to perform as band leaders and discuss their music. Two years later, veteran record producer and musician Don Was joined Blue Note as Chief Creative Officer and soon became its president, renewing its dedication to the original label vision, articulated by Blue Note founder Alfred Lion that “any particular style of playing which represents an authentic way of musical feeling is genuine expression.”

    Checkout the members of Our Point of View on WBGO:

    Listen Now

    Listen Now

    Listen Now

    Listen Now

    Listen Now

    Listen Now

  • John Lee On Dizzy Gillespie All-Stars: Listen Now

    October 20, 2014. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    Bassist and bandleader John Lee talks with Bill Daugtry about the Dizzy Gillespie All-Stars' celebration of the late trumpeter's birthday and musical legacy at New York's Blue Note Jazz Club this week. Enjoy!


  • Poetry Month: Monifa Brown - "NEWK! Sonny Rollins"

    October 17, 2014. Posted by David Tallacksen.

    Add new comment | Filed under: poetry
    Monifa Brown

    October is Newark Poetry Month and WBGO is celebrating!

    Monifa Brown - in addition to hosting Saturday Afternoon Jazz on WBGO - is a seasoned publicist in the music business and classically-trained singer. Brown says "jazz is a spiritual pillar in my life." Her forthcoming book of Jazz Poetry features original works dedicated to iconic jazz figures.

    Sonny Rollins

    Tour De Force

    A Single Voice

    He’s made his Choice

    Not afraid to sound out loud…always on a quest to be found

    Sonny Side Up

    From St. Thomas to Way Out West

    Nothing short of amazing

    Tenor Madness always blazin’

    Building Bridges ….

    Williamsburg, Harlem,  Airegin and all points in between

    A sight to be seen

    Freedom Suite hymns with Herculean force

    taking us straight to the source…

    OUR life force

    A meditation for Global Warming

    Blues for a new dawning


    Free flowing silver fro and ascot in tow

    Always one to look good for the show

    Soloing through changes, playing through whirlwind mazes,

    then jumping off stages…

    Igniting the carnival…for all of us to marvel

    It’s got to be The Saxophone Colossus

    Who else could top this?

    Got to Be Newk

    Now ya’ll know this ain’t no fluke!

    Capable of moving mountains

    With ideas that flow like fountains

    Off the cuff, smooth and tough

    Newk’s doing it like we knew he would

    Lifting spirits, dispelling sadness

    Casting circular breathing rings of hope

    He carries our dreams enraptured in each note

    He carries our dreams enraptured in each and every  single note

    Doing it loud, saying it proud

    Drawing us near into his Sonnysphere.

    Thank God Sonny’s near….

    Sonny’s here!

    Thank God Sonny’s near….

    Sonny’s here!