Nicole Sweeney

Host, Evening Jazz

Nicole Sweeney is a Queens-born, Long Island-raised music lover. Growing up in New York with West Indian parents, she was surrounded by all types of music every day and the influence of jazz was constant.

Nicole received her B.A. in Communications from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA after taking a seven-year hiatus which originally started out as a "semester break". Going back to school as a more "seasoned adult", Nicole took her education very seriously; while working and going to school full-time, she obtained three internships with Temple Update, Good Day Philadelphia, and Temple University's public radio station, WRTI.

With jazz always being a part of her life, she quickly fell in love with the music and became very focused on her position at WRTI-FM. Shortly after the internship ended, Nicole was hired at WRTI-FM and after graduating, decided to move to Atlanta where the broadcasting industry was growing.

She was hired at WCLK-FM for a temporary Sunday shift and within months was hired for the weekly Midday shift which she held for over 6 years. Nicole grew her Midday audience by giving them a mix of classics as well as a nice dose of the "here and now" of jazz. Nicole also hosted the popular monthly "Friday Jazz at the High Museum of Art" for two years, as well as being the preferred emcee for jazz concerts at major venues such as Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center, Emory University's Schwartz Center for Performing Arts and Clayton State University's Spivey Hall.

She has interviewed jazz legends such as Ahmad Jamal, McCoy Tyner, Dee Dee Bridgewater, George Benson as well as legends in the making such as Robert Glasper, Christian McBride, and Esperanza Spalding. She feels jazz music should not be put in a box and considers herself a vessel of the music, constantly quoting the Pharoah Sanders piece "The Creator Has a Master Plan" when referring to her journey within the music.

Nicole says she doesn't just love jazz, she is IN love with jazz, and looks forward to sharing that love with you.

Ways to Connect


I’ve woken up many nights and mornings with that one word on my mind.


Rob Crocker, Sheila Anderson and Nicole Sweeney discuss highlights of the past year. 

Chris Tobin / WBGO

This Labor Day, WBGO presented four hours of music, recorded live at this year’s Charlie Parker Jazz Festival. We have highlights from the broadcast right here.

In his first live on-air interview, drummer Nate Smith stops by Afternoon Jazz to talk with Nicole Sweeney about being a part of the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program, the making of his new album — Kinfolk: Postcards From Everywhere, featuring bassist, longtime friend and 2017 NEA Jazz Master Dave Holland —the vibe behind the "Nate Bop," and more.

It’s an album I have been waiting for since seeing drummer Nate Smith a decade back with Stefon Harris  & Blackout.  He comes from  the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program,  has recorded & played with saxophonists Chris Potter, Ravi Coltrane, bassist Dave Holland and singer Jose James ,  toured with singer Joe Jackson and co-wrote  & produced “Heaven Can Wait” for Michael Jackson’s 2001 Invincible album.