Pannonica de Koenigswarter, aka Nica or “The Jazz Baroness,” was a friend to Thelonious Monk and other jazz artists and inspired a slew of musical tributes.
Kickin' the gong around with Minnie, McVouty, Freddie, and other assorted jazzniks.
Night Lights pays tribute to the holidays in the mellowest of moods.
Night Lights' annual holiday tribute celebrates the season with plenty of cool-Yule jazz from Chet Baker, Bob Brookmeyer, John Coltrane, Shorty Rogers and more.
*Columbia University’s Center for Jazz Studies has put up a Jazz Studies Online site, which I’m adding to the Night Lights blogroll page. Looks like a cool site–for starters, they’ve put up the entire first issue of the legendary but short-lived late-1950s journal Jazz Review.
*Speaking of cultural studies of a sort, check out this 1964 Playboy symposium on jazz, posted by Detroit Free Press music critic (and Bloomington native) Mark Stryker over at Organissimo. Participants included Cannonball Adderley, Dave Brubeck, Ralph Gleason, Charles Mingus, Stan Kenton, Dizzy Gillespie, and Gunther Schuller.
WDCB, one of two stations in the Chicago area that continue to broadcast jazz, is airing three Night Lights programs in a row on Labor Day Monday evening, from 7 to 10 p.m. Central Time–Cats Who Swing and Sing: Women Singer-Pianists of the 1940s and 50s, 1959: Jazz’s Vintage Year, and Porgy and Bess: the 1950s Jazz Revival.
Many of Horace Silver's compositions, such as “Opus de Funk,” “The Preacher,” “Nica’s Dream,” and “Peace” have become jazz standards heard frequently today.
Three significant jazz masters will be celebrating milestone birthdays in the next several weeks. On August 25, tenor saxophonist Wayne Shorter turns 75. On September 2, pianist Horace Silver marks 80 years. And on September 4, bandleader Gerald Wilson–perhaps the last great living link to the swing era–sees in his 90th birthday. I have Night Lights programs in store for all three artists, and I’m sure there will be other jazz-radio tributes around the country.
This week on Night Lights it’s “Songs of Peace.” We’ll hear instrumental themes using “Peace” as a title from John Coltrane, Ornette Coleman, and Horace Silver, as well as Louis Armstrong’s 1970 take on John Lennon’s “Give Peace a Chance,” Bill Evans’ improvisation on Leonard Bernstein’s “Some Other Time” that came to be known as “Peace Piece,” Mahalia Jackson’s a capella version of Duke Ellington’s “Come Sunday,” and more.
This week on Night Lights it’s “Piano Noir: Ran Blake”. Pianist and composer Ran Blake has earned an international reputation with his recordings and with his work as a Third Stream educator at the New England Conservatory of Music. His music has been strongly influenced by the genre of film noir; in this…