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Our Back Pages: WBGO’s Best Jazz Stories of 2022

Tulani Bridgewater-Kowalski and Dee Bridgewater
Kimberly M. Wang/Eardog Productions/eardog.com
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Tulani Bridgewater-Kowalski and Dee Dee Bridgewater, founders of The Woodshed Network

Yes, WBGO is a radio station, a great radio station. But it also hosts a website that not only streams its broadcast, but also offers up podcasts and a plethora of stories about the music, the musicians and the scene. As we wrap up 2022, we thought we’d offer a look back at some of our favorite stories during the past year, perhaps some of which you may have missed. As you can see, many of our hosts contributed a wide variety of interviews and conversations to bring you closer to the music. We hope you enjoy this sampling of what we covered in the jazz community in 2022. We can promise you that we have even more in store for 2023.

Dee Dee Bridgewater and Tulani Bridgewater-Kowalski tell Lezlie Harrison why they created The Woodshed Network, their mentoring program for women in jazz

Fran Lebowitz
Brigitte Lacombe
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Fran Lebowitz

Doug Doyle talks with writer and humorist Fran Leibowitz about her affinity for jazz

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Chucho Valdes
Tomas Ovalle c/o Monterey Jazz Festival
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Chucho Valdes performing his "Creation Suite" at the 65th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival

Chucho Valdés talks with Bobby Sanabria about his “La Creación” suite

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Joe Sanders at Siena
courtesy of Caterina Di Perri
Joe Sanders, left, with a bass student, Fuensanta Mendez, at Associazone Siena Jazz in Siena, Italy in 2021.

Ashley Kahn on jazz artists living abroad


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Irma Thomas
courtesy of WYES
Irma Thomas at WYES-TV in New Orleans, 2021.

In a conversation with Felix Hernandez, Irma Thomas reflects on her soulful career

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Janis_Siegel_4.jpg

Janis Siegel tells Gary Walker all about the origin and evolution of The Manhattan Transfer

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Pat Martino and Russell Malone
R. Andrew Lepley
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Pat Martino and Russell Malone at the Berks Jazz Festival

Russell Malone reflects on the legacy of fellow guitarist Pat Martino

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Charles Mingus at 1962 Newport Jazz Festival
Charles Mingus performing at the 1962 Newport Jazz Festival.
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Lee Tanner

Nate Chinen on Charles Mingus as a social and political activist

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Dayramir Gonzalez
Jonathan Chimene
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Dayramir Gonzalez

Dayramir Gonzalez’s concert and interview as part of the Yamaha Concert Series

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Charles and Sue Mingus
Charles and Sue Mingus

Helen Sung writes about the life and legacy of Sue Mingus

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Samara Joy
Meredith Truax
Samara Joy

Jazz Night in America features breakout vocal jazz star Samara Joy in an episode of their Youngbloods series

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Amos Lee
c/o the artist
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Amos Lee

Singer-songwriter Amos Lee channeled Chet Baker on his latest album, My Ideal: A Tribute to Chet Baker Sings

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Learn to Swim Still 2 - Courtesy ARRAY Releasing (1).jpg

Thyrone Thommy talks with Jamara Wakefield about his jazz-themed film for Netflix Learn to Swim

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Lucia Gutiérrez Rebolloso
Steven Sussman
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Lucia Gutiérrez Rebolloso

Sarah Vaughan International Vocal Jazz Competition winner Lucía Gutiérrez Rebolloso talks with Gary Walker before she took the top prize

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cyrille_aimee_crop.png
Chris Tobin
/
WBGO

Leo Sidran interviews Cyrille Aimee in an episode of The Third Story podcast

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20 Sonny Rollins Bridge Atsuhiko Kawabata 300dpi Final.jpg
Atsuhiko Kawabata
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Sonny Rollins

Lee Mergner’s conversation with Aidan Levy, author of Saxophone Colossus, The Life and Music of Sonny Rollins

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Raul Midon
Rye Vasque
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Raul Midon

Raul Midon speaks with Sheila Anderson about his album of duets with 12 other guitarists

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Vincent Herring
Vincent Herring

Vincent Herring on the legacy of John Coltrane

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Hymn to Freedom - Single Cover.
Cover of Hymn to Freedom single

The story behind Oscar Peterson’s “Hymn to Freedom” and its recent remake

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Coleman Hawkins in 1946.
William Gottlieb
/
The Library Of Congress
Coleman Hawkins in 1946.

Lew Tabackin on the legacy of Coleman Hawkins

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Ronnie Cuber
Ronnie Cuber

Randy Brecker’s remembrance of saxophonist Ronnie Cuber

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Dionne Warwick
David Vance
/
CNN
Dionne Warwick

Pat Prescott speaks with Dionne Warwick about her long and storied career

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Judy Carmichael
c/o the artist
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Judy Carmichael

Judy Carmichael of Jazz Inspired on the art of interviewing

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Jamaaladeen Tacuma in front of the Whiteville Bus Station
Rahima Tacuma
/
Courtesy of Artist
Jamaaladeen Tacuma in front of the Whiteville Bus Station

Bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma reflects on his journey from rural North Carolina

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Billie Holiday
Billie Holiday

Jamara Wakefield reflects on Billie Holiday’s version of “I’m a Fool to Want You”

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Jane Bunnett
courtesy of the artist

Jane Bunnett talks with Nicole Sweeney about the Cuban jazz group Maqueque