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.
King was a jazz fan, and eloquently expressed his admiration for the music; numerous jazz musicians repaid the compliment.
This week on Night Lights it’s “The Night Before Christmas,” with Christmas-Eve jazz from Fats Navarro, Dexter Gordon, Louis Armstrong, Duke Pearson, Frank Sinatra, and more. “The Night Before Christmas” airs at 11:05 p.m. on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, on WFIU.
In the 1950s and 60s, as the Cold War & the civil-rights movement heated up, the U.S. State Department sent jazz musicians on goodwill tours around the world.