WBGO Blog
  • Broadway By The Year

    February 18, 2010. Posted by Andrew Meyer.

    Scott Siegel is the producer and host of an extraordinary series of concerts at The Town Hall in New York. "Broadway by the Year" celebrates musical theatre year by year with some of Broadway's best singers and dancers. This season is Siegel's 10th anniversary and begins February 22nd with the musicals of 1927, including the first great dramatic musical, "Show Boat." March 22nd spotlights musicals of 1948, including the first Tony-winning Best Musical, "Kiss Me, Kate." May 10th features musicals of 1966, including "Cabaret," "Mame," and "Sweet Charity." Siegel's season finale on June 14th will be that much more special, presenting one song from one musical each of the last 20 years, plus Scott's choice of a song from the Broadway season happening now.

    We talked about "Broadway by the Year" for the February 19th WBGO Journal, but this blog special includes our continuing conversation about our favorite shows, plus songs from four of Scott's previous "years" at The Town Hall.

    -- Michael Bourne

  • NJ Gubernatorial Debate at WBGO

    October 22, 2009. Posted by Brandy Wood.

    NJ Gubernatorial Debate at WBGO Jazz 88.3FM October 22, 2009
    Thursday, October 22, all three candidates for New Jersey Governor met at the WBGO studios to debate the issues for the last time in this race.

    Listen to the debate by clicking here.

    The debate was moderated by Doug Doyle, WBGO News Director since 1988, who has been covering New Jersey politics for the past 25 years. Doug and the WBGO News team have received over 200 awards from organizations like PRNDI, AP, New York Association of Black Journalists, Garden State Association of Black Journalists and the New Jersey Society of Professional Journalists. Doug began his radio career at WMJY in Long Branch, New Jersey where he eventually became news director at the station known as Y107 at that time. The next stop was WOBM-FM in Toms River, New Jersey. He spent ten years there, seven of them as news director. Doug teaches radio and news writing classes at Rutgers-Newark University and Brookdale Community College and can be heard regularly on National Public Radio where he provides the network with business news and breaking stories.

    General assignment reporter and the afternoon/evening news anchor, Andrew Meyer, an award-winning journalist who’s been a member of the WBGO News department since 1998, was one of two reports posing questions to the candidates. In 2004, Andrew was a fellow at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism in a program called "Cities, Suburbs and Beyond." In 2001, he received a fellowship from the National Press Foundation in Washington D.C. to take part in a special four-day forum on housing and development issues. He is a past president of the New Jersey Associated Press Broadcasters' Association. Andrew is also a contributor to and a co-host of the WBGO Journal, a weekly news magazine produced by WBGO News airing Friday nights at 7:30. He also serves as the host of WBGO’s live, monthly call-in show with Mayor Cory Booker, Newark Today.

    Phil Gregory, a recent addition to the WBGO team and a long time reporter in the tri-state area, was also asking questions of Christie, Corzine and Daggett. Phil anchored coverage of several major events including the 9-11 attacks and the 2003 blackout while at Bloomberg Radio in New York City. Phil also covered business and market news as a reporter from the New York Stock Exchange. Phil started his broadcast career at WAEB in Allentown, PA where he advanced to become News Director. He was an award winning reporter and anchor at radio stations WPTR, WFLY and WROW in Albany, NY and at WOBM in Toms River, NJ. Phil is a past President of the Empire State Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He covers the Statehouse and Central Jersey for both WBGO and WHYY in Philadelphia.

  • My Two Jazz Cats

    September 15, 2009. Posted by Andrew Meyer.

    On this pet pledge day, I thought it would be a good time to introduce you to the latest addition to our home.  Say hello to Dinah.

    dinah

    Four and  a half months old, adopted from a shelter in Bloomfield a few weeks ago and making herself quite at home.

    You might remember our other cat, Dizzy, who moved in a year ago last Spring.

    dizzy

    These two jazz cats are still getting used to each other.

    dizzy and dinah 1

    But they love hanging out and listening to WBGO all day long (which their human companions are sure to leave on the radio while they're at work.)

    dizzy and dinah 2

    This household proudly supports WBGO!

    Have you done your part for you and your pets?

    Call and make a pledge at 1-800-499-9246 or pledge online at www.wbgo.org.

    Thanks for making member-supported, pet-pleasing Jazz88 possible!

    Andrew Meyer

  • Remembering Les Paul

    August 13, 2009. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Masters, News

    LesPaul


    Les Paul died today.  He was 94.  In 2005, I was hired to make a documentary about a century of jazz guitar.  The resulting work was called Progressions: 100 Years of Jazz Guitar.  My partner at Joyride Media, Paul Chuffo, and I were running wild getting interviews with George Benson, Jim Hall, John Scofield, and jazz writer Bill Milkowski, a really knowledgeable source for all things related to jazz guitar.
    As we were trying to decide who could possibly host our special, there was really only one person who had the authority and the cache.  The Wizard of Waukesha - Les Paul.  I recorded Les Paul's narration at Iridium, where he performed every Monday night for many years.  The best parts of the show are when Les simply embellished the script with his own asides.  Like when he said, "I played with Django Reinhardt, and I can tell you he was one of the best I've ever heard."  This coming from a man who was 90.  When people tell me things like this, I remember.  Anyway, I thought I'd share the documentary, if you'd like to take a stroll through the history of jazz guitar with one of the great innovators in guitar music and recording.  There are many reasons why Les Paul mattered.  He invented the solid body guitar, for one.  He was the first person to multi-track individual instruments for a recording, which is something we do every time we record musicians for WBGO.
    Les Paul - 94 years well lived.  Thank you.

  • Impressions of Rashied Ali

    August 13, 2009. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    rashiedali

    Sad news to report.  Rashied Ali has died.  Information is spare, but it has been confirmed on his website.

    I can remember first hearing Rashied like many jazz lovers - by consuming vast amounts of the recorded legacy of John Coltrane.  I followed Trane to the end, including every note that followed the dissolution of the famous quartet with McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones.  Rashied Ali joined the group, and Elvin Jones was quick to depart.  That made Rashied the go-to guy for Trane, and they really created some amazing music together.  I  wore out the Coltrane/Ali duet recording, Interstellar Space when I was in college.  I simply could not fathom how two people created so much sound.

    Fast forward to June 24, 2004.  I was the producer for a live broadcast from Sounds of the City, an outdoor concert series presented by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.  The first of three acts we recorded that day was a duet with saxophonist Sonny Fortune and drummer Rashied Ali.  Meeting them both for the first time was one thing, but it's the concert that I'll never forget.  It's one song - Coltrane's "Impressions," and it lasts for 55 minutes.  We broadcast it live on WBGO.  Click the button above to hear it.  It was 5pm, right at the beginning of our drivetime.  I think that if I had a car that day, I would have driven around the city until the song was over, because both of these gentlemen were so heavily invested in the music.  That's something I hope anyone can appreciate - a life dedicated to music.  I'll miss you, Rashied.