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Night Lights Classic Jazz


David Brent Johnson

Born in Indianapolis, Indiana, David Brent Johnson moved to Bloomington in 1991. He is an alumnus of Indiana University, and began working with WFIU in 2002. Currently, David serves as jazz producer and systems coordinator at the station. His interests include literature, history, music, writing, and movies.

Recent posts by David Brent

September 24, 2015


Photo of pianist James P. Johnson

Mosaic Is Releasing A James P. Johnson Set

The set will chronicle Johnson's career on record from the early years of the Harlem Renaissance to the World War II era.

September 24, 2015


cover for the Free Spirits' Out Of Sight And Sound LP

First Fusion: Jazz-Rock Before Bitches Brew

In the late 1960s, young musicians such as The Free Spirits, the Fourth Way, and other now-forgotten fusioneers made the first attempts to blend jazz with rock.

September 7, 2015


Sonny Rollins on the bridge

Crossing The Bridge: The Return Of Sonny Rollins

In 1961 saxophonist Sonny Rollins returned from a two-year sabbatical, forming new musical alliances as he plunged into a shifting and vibrant jazz landscape.

August 27, 2015


Arranger Eddie Sauter with Ray McKinley

Jazz a la Sauter: Eddie Sauter

Sauter's innovative and challenging arrangements gave the big-band sound an artistic sophistication that anticipated the rise of the Third Stream.

August 19, 2015


Cover of Doug Ramsey's Paul Desmond biography

After Brubeck: Paul Desmond In The 1970s

At the end of 1967 one of the most popular groups in jazz, the Dave Brubeck Quartet, disbanded. What did its star alto saxophonist Paul Desmond do next?

August 13, 2015


Cd cover for Herbie Hancock on Blue Note

Maiden Voyage: Herbie Hancock In The 1960s

In the 1960s Herbie Hancock seemed to be everywhere on the jazz scene, recording both as a leader for Blue Note and as a sideman with Miles Davis and others.

August 8, 2015


Billie Holiday Lady Sings The Blues

Late Lady: Billie Holiday On Verve In The 1950s

In 1952 Billie Holiday began her last great period on record with a series of small-group sessions that capture the twilight glow of a jazz star.

July 21, 2015


Photo of saxophonist Lester Young

Mosaic Records To Release Mother Of All Lester Young Box Sets

The most comprehensive portrait of Lester Young in his prime that's ever been assembled.

July 20, 2015


The onscreen opening to Duke Ellington's

Swing It Loud: Duke Ellington’s Early Black-Pride Music

Long before the rise of the black-pride movement in the 1960s, Ellington was writing music that celebrated African-American culture, personalities, and history.

July 9, 2015


The cover for John Coltrane's 1957 Blue Note album BLUE TRAIN.

1957, Four Portraits In Jazz: Blakey, Coltrane, Fuller, Rollins

A prolific and diverse year for Art Blakey; a turnaround for John Coltrane; continuing momentum for Sonny Rollins; and an astonishing debut for Curtis Fuller.

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This Week On Afterglow

Songs of the Season: Autumn 2015

Dinah Washington-September in the Rain

Afterglow's salute to falling leaves and pumpkin spice with the best autumn songs from the Great American Songbook.

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Afterglow is WFIU's weekly program of jazz and American popular song hosted by David Brent Johnson.

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