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Archive for Night Lights Classic Jazz

December 25, 2004

Holy Ghost: Albert Ayler

Jazz writer Dan Morgenstern once compared the sound of tenor saxophonist Albert Ayler's 1960s avant-garde groups to "a Salvation Army marching band on LSD." <em>Holy Ghost</em>, a new 9-CD collection of previously-unreleased live and studio recordings from <a href="http://www.ayler.org/albert/">Albert Ayler</a>, is the...

December 18, 2004

Holiday Happening

The first-ever Night Lights Christmas program features music from Booker Ervin ("White Christmas" from his 1966 album Solid Structure), Ahmad Jamal ("Snowfall," written by Terre Haute, Indiana native Claude Thornhill), Sonny Rollins ("Winter Wonderland"), Babs Gonzalez ("Bebop Santa Claus"), Bill Evans (a rare and amusing vocal take...

December 4, 2004

The Wild One

The Wild One, Marlon Brando's 1953 motorcycle-gang movie, was based on a real-life 1947 incident in which thousands of bikers, many of them blue-collar World War II vets from Los Angeles, descended upon a northern California town and frightened its inhabitants...

November 27, 2004

Jazz Workshops: Charles Mingus And John Carisi

"The Jazz Workshops Part 2" is another in an ongoing series of occasional Night Lights episodes about progressive/collective jazz recordings in the 1950s. This program features music from Charles Mingus' 1954 Savoy LP The Jazz Composers Workshop, a recording...

November 20, 2004

The Hawk Heads Home

The Hawk Heads Home: Coleman Hawkins in the Early 1960s" was broadcast in honor of the Hawkins centenary on Sunday, Nov. 21, 2004. The early 1960s were Hawkins' last great period, and this program features music from his Today and Now lp, his bossa nova effort (Desafinado), and his collaborations with Duke Ellington...

October 30, 2004

Strange Enchantment: Jazz For Halloween

"Strange Enchantment" is a program of Halloween-related jazz, including music from Duke Ellington ("Stalking Monster"), Bill Evans ("Witchcraft"), Kay Starr ("The Headless Horseman"), Rahsaan Roland Kirk ("Haunted Feelings")and a very young Gil Evans with Skinny Ennis ("Strange Enchantment") as well as tracks from...

October 23, 2004

The House In The Heart: Lester Young In The 1950s

Even as his physical health declined throughout the 1950s, tenor saxophonist Lester Young remained capable of moving and beautiful performances. This program includes tracks with pianists John Lewis and Oscar Peterson, a reunion date with Teddy Wilson in 1956, live recordings from December of that year, and Lester Young himself speaking...

October 9, 2004

Inception: McCoy Tyner On Impulse

Pianist McCoy Tyner joined John Coltrane's group at the age of 22 in 1960 and signed with Impulse not long after Coltrane moved to the label in 1961. Over the next four years Tyner would record seven albums as a leader for Impulse, most often in the trio format that was seen as being both commercially favorable and a chance to showcase him in a setting different from the Coltrane quartet. Though Tyner's playing on these records is considered...

September 18, 2004

Early Baron: Charles Mingus 1945-49

This week on Night Lights we feature the early music of Charles Mingus, taken from an Uptown Records CD entitled "Charles 'Baron' Mingus: West Coast Recordings, 1945-49." Musicologist Stefano Zenni has an interesting website devoted to this little-heard period of Mingus' music, which includes jump blues, Ellingtonian ballads...

September 4, 2004

Four Women: Nina Simone's Mid-1960s Philips Recordings

Nina Simone is a genre unto herself...

August 28, 2004

Bird Alive: Charlie Parker

As the messiah of modern bop, Charlie Parker was one of the first jazz musicians to be recorded widely in live settings. On this program, in honor of the 84th anniversary of his birth, we'll feature music from Bird's performances with Bud Powell, Fats Navarro, Charles Mingus, Roy Haynes, and other leading lights of late-1940s and early-1950s jazz, including an impromptu "Well You Needn't" with Thelonious...

August 21, 2004

Destination Out: Grachan Moncur And Jackie McLean

In December 1962 Jackie McLean went to play a gig in Boston with a local rhythm section. That local section included a 17-year-old drummer named Tony Williams, who would return with McLean to New York a week later to begin a phenomenal career that would include a long stint with Miles Davis' 1960s quintet. McLean also joined forces with Grachan Moncur, a trombonist who had played with both the Jazztet and Ray Charles...

July 24, 2004

A Brief Convergence: Miles Davis And Sam Rivers In 1964

In 1964 Miles Davis had a new rhythm section in place-Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on bass, Tony Williams on drums-but he was still searching for a tenor saxophonist. Since John Coltrane's departure in 1960, Miles had gone through Sonny Stitt, Hank Mobley, Jimmy Heath, and George Coleman; he really wanted Wayne Shorter, but Shorter was...

July 17, 2004

The Day Lady Died: Billie Holiday

Billie Holiday died in New York City at 3 a.m. on Friday, July 17, 1959-45 years to the day of this broadcast. In addition to Holiday's music-"Don't Worry 'Bout Me," from her little-known last album BILLIE HOLIDAY (recorded after LADY IN SATIN), "This Year's Kisses" (with Lester Young), the vibrant early side "Life Begins When You're in Love," a moodier &amp; spookier alternate take of her Decca recording "No More," and other...

July 10, 2004

Charlie Parker's Favorite Singer: Jackie Paris

Jackie Paris, who died last month at the age of 79, was a favorite of Charles Mingus, Charlie Parker, and Lenny Bruce, but he remained in semi-obscurity for most of his career. He recorded the first-ever vocal version of Thelonious Monk's "Round Midnight" in 1949, collaborated several times with Mingus, and made LPs for Brunswick (Skylark) and Impulse (The Song Is Paris) that became...

July 3, 2004

Let Freedom Ring

Night Lights' pilot program that aired on the eve of 2004's July 4th holiday, featuring music from Jackie McLean, Charles Mingus, Avery Parrish, Nina Simone...

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