Ray Angry's Celebration of Life Suite

January 26, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Interviews


Ray Angry

Don't count out Ray Angry becoming a famous hip-hop star. His talent on keys earned him a place in Lauryn Hill's band and beat-making ability a regular contributor to The Roots. On this show, Angry shows his affection for jazz with his "Celebration Of Life Suite" as featured on the album Supreme Sonacy Vol. 1 from Revive Music and Blue Note Records.

Dayna Stephens' New Beginning

December 16, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Featured, Interviews


Dayna Stephens

Dayna Stephens suffers from the rare kidney disease focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), a condition that leads to kidney failure. The day before his life is renewed, when he undergoes the procedure of receiving new (donated) kidney, the young saxophonist talks about the years leading up to this moment, the countless treatments of dialysis, and the music that came from this experience, including listening to Coltrane's Transition and making his own recording That Nepenthetic Place (Sunnyside).

Gilad Hekselman's Homes

December 9, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Interviews


Gilad Hekselman

Guitarist Gilad Hekselman, who is always on the road, rarely finds a place he calls home. Homes (Harmonia Mundi) is the name of his latest recording that features two stellar drummers -- Jeff Ballard and Marcus Gilmore.  He also talks about music he grew up listening to at home (Israeli) by Matti Caspi in addition to a rarely heard song by one of his guitar heroes, Kurt Rosenwinkel.

Jazz on Turntables with Kid Koala

December 7, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Interviews


Kid Koala

Montreal-based turntablist Eric San, aka Kid Koala, is jazz musician trapped inside a DJ's body. The "scratch artist" talks about transcending the limitations of his instrument, the details about his new operatic puppet show Nufonia Must Fall, and music from his recent American roots recording 12 Bit Blues (Ninja Tune).

Click here for Nufonia Must Fall's touring schedule.

In The Air with Pianist Aaron Diehl

November 23, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Featured, Interviews


Aaron Diehl

Pilot Aaron Diehl takes us on a flight around Manhattan while sharing an aviation playlist consisting of the music Philip Glass, James P. Johnson, and D'Angelo. Plus, the pianist and composer shares music from his own recording Space Time Continuum (Mack Avenue) and music featuring rising star singer Cecile McLorin Salvant.

Aaron Diehl performs at Jazz at Licoln Center March 18 and 19, 2016.

Gregorio Uribe’s Cumbia Universal

November 11, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Berklee, Featured, Interviews, Live


Gregorio Uribe

Colombian transplant Gregorio Uribe wears many hats as an accordionist, singer, composer, and big band leader.  Uribe presents the contagious afro-influenced music of his homeland and updates it for modern jazz big band in Cumbia Universal. This concert was captured at his alma mater Berklee College of Music as part of The Checkout Live series hosted by Simon Rentner.  See video of his awesome performance here.

Gregorio Uribe’s Cumbia Universal appears at NYC’s Pangea Jazz Fest Sunday, November 15th.

Audio Engineer: Jeremy Stirone

Steve Coleman: Synovial Joints

October 28, 2015 by Simon Rentner
Filed under Featured, Interviews


steve coleman

Saxophone polymath and MacArthur "Genius" Grant recipient Steve Coleman explores the human anatomy, the trade winds of Ghana, and Amazon bird calls in his recording Synovial Joints (Pi).

Don't miss Coleman's Charlie Parker listening party at Jazz at Lincoln Center Thursday, October 29th at 7pm.

Also, his residency at the Village Vangaurd (November 10 - 15), where he will feature an augmented version of Five Elements plus the premier his band Natal Eclispe.

Muhal Richard Abrams: 50 Years of AACM

September 9, 2015 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


muhal richard abrams

Muhal Richard Abrams, co-founder of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, celebrates the organization's 50th anniversary at the 2015 Chicago Jazz Festival.

The legendary pianist and composer talks with Simon Rentner about his life and the historic reunion of his Experimental Band at the festival.

Bria Skonberg's Egyptian Fantasy

September 2, 2015 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


bria skonberg

Vancouver-born, New York-based trumpeter and vocalist Bria Skonberg shares her new arrangements of music popularized by Sidney Bechet and Anita O’Day. 

Skonberg performed at the 2015 Newport Jazz Festival with her Jazz Compatriots, Evan Arntzen, Dalton Ridenhour, Sean Cronin, and  Darrian Douglas.

You can support Bria’s current recording project with Ali Jackson, Aaron Diehl, and Reginald Veal by making a contribution to her Pledge Music Campaign.

Audio Engineer: David Tallacksen

Edmar Castañeda: "World Ensemble"

August 12, 2015 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


edmar castaneda

Colombian Edmar Castañeda brings musicians from eight different countries together with his World Ensemble.  The harpist also performs solo in our studio.  He talks about growing up in the high plains of Colombia and Queens, and his group's new album, recorded live at New York's Jazz Standard.

The group includes Gregoire Maret on harmonica,  Marshall Gilkes, trombone, Itai Kriss, flute, Shlomi Cohen, soprano sax, Pablo Vergara, piano, Rodrigo Villalon, drums, David Silliman, percussion, Andrea Tierra on vocals, Tamer Pinarbasi on kanun and Sergio Krakowski on pandeiro.

The Edmar Castañeda World Ensemble performs at The Jazz Standard August 12.