WBGO Blog
  • The Legacy Of The Jazz Organ In Philadelphia

    April 22, 2015

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    Rich Budesa was one of six organists to perform. (Image Credit: WXPN)

    In mid-century Philadelphia, dozens of organists reshaped jazz into a popular, swinging, danceable contemporary music. Often in trios with drums and guitar or saxophone, these organ players made church instruments into portable orchestras — a tradition that continues to the present day in Philadelphia.

    Jazz Night In America visits Philadelphia's World Café Live, where WXPN, WRTI and the Philadelphia Jazz Project organized a tribute to three native sons and daughters of the organ tradition: Jimmy Smith, Shirley Scott and Charles Earland. Many top local performers help explain what made their city's jazz organ culture thrive.

    Copyright 2015 WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center. To see more, visit .

  • WBGO Jam Live 2015: Berklee "Effortless Mastery" Ensemble

    April 22, 2015. Posted by Tim Wilkins.

    The Berklee College of Music's "Effortless Mastery" Ensemble, directed by pianist Kenny Werner,  performs live at WBGO for Jazz Appreciation Month. Click below to hear this concert.

    Werner also spoke with Rhonda Hamilton about Berklee's new "Effortless Mastery" Institute, which teaches students holistic techniques for developing and maintaining healthy performance practices.

    All month long in April, WBGO is showcasing student ensembles with vocalists who performed live in our studios for Jazz Appreciation Month. All of these full sets will be available online. Enjoy!

    Click on the image below to see a slideshow from this live in-studio performance.

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    Berklee College of Music "Effortless Mastery Ensemble

    live at WBGO 4/20/15

    Kenny Werner, piano, Long Island, NY
    Vivienne Aerts, voice, Leiden, Netherlands
    Edmar Colon, sax, Coamo, Puerto Rico
    Mao Sone, trumpet, Chiba, Japan
    Max Salinger-Ridley, bass, Boston, MA
    Tiago Michelin, drums, Cambridge, MA

  • Simón Bolívar Big Band Jazz In Concert

    April 21, 2015

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    Simón Bolívar Big Band Jazz performs at Jazz at Lincoln Center. (Image Credit: Frank Stewart/Jazz at Lincoln Center)

    The public youth music education program known as El Sistema has reached hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans, largely through participation in classical music ensembles. In 2007, drummer Andrés Briceño and head of the Simón Bolívar Conservatory of Music Valdemar Rodríguez introduced a jazz program to El Sistema, with the goal of promoting the music throughout Venezuela. The flagship ensemble, Simón Bolívar Big Band Jazz, presents the work of both American jazz masters and Venezuelan composers, and like its orchestral counterparts, has now toured the U.S.

    Jazz Night In America presents Simón Bolívar Big Band Jazz during a recent stateside sojourn, from Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola within New York's Jazz at Lincoln Center.

    Copyright 2015 WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center. To see more, visit .