• WBGO's Farewell to Trumpeter Marcus Belgrave: Listen Now

    May 26, 2015. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    WBGO says goodbye to trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, who passed away May 24 from heart failure at age 78.

    Marcus and his wife Joan, a vocalist, stopped by WBGO in 2014 to talk with Awilda Rivera about their storied careers, making music with everyone from Ray Charles to Martha & The Vandellas. We'd like to share that remarkable conversation with you again now.


    Born in Chester Pennsylvania, Belgrave began his professional life in music at age 12, in a band that also included trumpeter Clifford Brown.

    Jazz artists he performed with include Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Charles Mingus and Max Roach. He was also an original member of the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, which he joined at the request of Wynton Marsalis in 1988.

    Marcus was an original member of Ray Charles's horn section in the 1950s, then settled in Detroit in 1962, where he joined Motown Records' house band. He can be heard on the hit records of Marvin Gaye, Martha & The Vandellas, The Four Tops and many others.

    Belgrave mentored many Detroit jazz musicians, including pianist Geri Allen and violinist Regina Carter.

    He also regularly participated in the annual New York Festival of New Trumpet, and spoke with Josh Jackson in 2013 about that event.

    Thank you Marcus, we will miss you!

  • Trumpeter Claudio Roditi: "Live At Jazzfestival Bern"

    July 23, 2014. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    Trumpeter Claudio Roditi talks with WBGO's Awilda Rivera about his live recordings with the Swiss Jazz Orchestra with saxophonist Paquito D'Rivera and bandoneón player Michael Zisman.

    Roditi, an original member of trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie's United Nation Orchestra, performs in the Newark Museum's Jazz In The Garden Series on June 24 at 12:15 p.m. Enjoy!


  • Marcus & Joan Belgrave On Detroit Jazz & Motown

    July 22, 2014. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    Trumpeter Marcus Belgrave and singer Joan Belgrave talk with WBGO's Awilda Rivera about their experiences performing jazz and R&B in Detroit. They perform with a quintet at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola in New York June 22 and 23.

    Marcus Belgrave was an original member of Ray Charles's horn section and of Motown Records' house band, and performed with Marvin Gaye, Martha & The Vandellas, and The Four Tops. Enjoy!