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Archive for Night Lights Classic Jazz

December 30, 2010

The Bridge: Billy Taylor, 1921-2010

As a performer, composer, educator, media host, and advocate, Billy Taylor built a boulevard of jazz for listeners around the world to travel.

December 28, 2010

Best Historical Releases and Reissues of 2010

A look back at musical look-backs from the past year.

December 16, 2010

A New Performance of Mary Lou Williams' "Zodiac Suite"

Mary Lou Williams' extended work will be performed in its entirety by a large ensemble for the first time since 1945.

December 3, 2010

Playland At The Beach: Dave Brubeck's Early Octet And Trio

The story and music of Dave Brubeck’s professional prelude as a young, experimental West Coast jazz musician.

November 28, 2010

The Billy Strayhorn Songbook

Billy Strayhorn was Duke Ellington’s composing/arranging partner for 27 years, writing “Take the A Train,” “Lush Life,” and many other eventual jazz standards.

November 23, 2010

A Brief History of Mary Lou Williams

Mary Lou Williams' career included everything from Kansas City swing and bebop to expatriate and sacred jazz, a stint as a jazz educator, and a 1977 encounter with avant-garde icon Cecil Taylor.

October 5, 2010

Autumn Serenades

Autumn’s here, and the time is right for lying in the leaves, with music from Nat King Cole, Johnny Hartman, Sonny Rollins and more.

September 30, 2010

Pull Your Coat: Jazz News And Links For October

Tony Curtis and SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS, CTI reissues coming, the Coltrane album that got you started, a film about Vince Guaraldi, and more.

September 28, 2010

We Brothers Three: The Montgomerys, Joneses And Heaths

Brother, where are you? Right here on the bandstand.

September 23, 2010

Goin' Up: Space Age Jazz

In the 1950s and 60s the race for space loomed large in the cultural imagination, and jazz artists such as Duke Ellington and Sun Ra picked up on the theme.

September 23, 2010

When Trane Met The Equinox: Happy Birthday, John Coltrane

The convergence of two stellar events: the birth of John Coltrane and the beginning of autumn.

September 16, 2010

He, Too, Was America: Duke Ellington's Sepia Panorama

A new book examines the bandleader and composer's life in the historical context of his times.

September 14, 2010

Jazz From Monterey: 1958, The Birth Of A Festival

In the late 1950s a former DJ and a journalist realized a dream that would become one of the longest-running live jazz events in the world-a weekend-long outdoor series of concerts in a beautiful central California coastal setting featuring some of the music’s greatest artists.

September 8, 2010

Workin': The Work Song In Jazz And Popular Music

Work songs go back at least as far as the beginning of recorded human history; whether farming, hunting, cultivating, sailing, or hammering, in the past we often chanted and sang to help us carry out our tasks; and even today, many employees listen to music in their places of work. Historian Ted Gioia joins us to talk about work songs and jazz.

September 7, 2010

Still Colossal: Happy 80th Birthday, Sonny Rollins

Programs from the Night Lights archives featuring live performances, a signal year, and Thelonious Monk.

September 1, 2010

Bird Lives! The Charlie Parker Memorial Concert Songbook

Alto saxophonist Charlie Parker revolutionized the sound of jazz and inspired many of his fellow artists in the 1940s and 50s with his flights of innovation in melody, harmony and rhythm. In the decade following his death at the age of 34 in 1955, a series of tribute concerts were held in his honor, as his proteges and others played in his memory.

August 25, 2010

I'd Like to Listen, Please: Dennis Hopper Among The Jazz Beatniks

A young Dennis Hopper, that is, as a curious sailor who meets a most unusual lady at a jazz club in the 1961 movie NIGHT TIDE.

August 24, 2010

Enter, Evening: Jazz Nocturnes

Jazz and the night: moody, evocative music for the evening.

August 18, 2010

Mosaic Records In Discussions To Release Savory Collection

The New York Times reports that the reissue label is in talks with the National Jazz Museum to release music from the William Savory collection on CD.

August 17, 2010

An Iconic Voice, An Iconic Eye: Abbey Lincoln And Herman Leonard

Abbey Lincoln personified the soul of jazz; Herman Leonard caught it with his camera.

August 6, 2010

Pull Your Coat, August 6: Abbey Lincoln, Nat Cole, & Jackie McLean

An 80th-birthday tribute to singer Abbey Lincoln, a Jackie McLean documentary, a newly-discovered Nat King Cole concert, and more.

July 24, 2010

Two For The Blues, Weekend Edition: Annie Ross And Basquiat

A program about the singer, a movie about the artist.

July 7, 2010

Off The A-Train: Paul Gonsalves, 1957-1963

Tenor saxophonist Paul Gonsalves is best known for the epic 27-chorus solo he took with Duke Ellington’s orchestra at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1956, but in the late 1950s and early 60s he showed his strength in a number of small-group recordings away from the Ellington orchestra as well, made with artists such as Wynton Kelly and Sonny Stitt.

July 2, 2010

It's All In The Game: Louis Armstrong, 1947-1957

In the spring of 1947 trumpeter Louis Armstrong was 45 years old-considered by some critics and fans to be all but washed up, with his best years behind him and his music made irrelevant by the rising force of bebop. But Armstrong was on the verge of one of the most interesting stretches of his career.

June 28, 2010

Good Vibes: Music For The Final Days Of The Online Fund Drive

Your contribution could be the one to put us over the top, as Milt Jackson, Bobby Hutcherson, Lem Winchester and others provide the soundtrack for support.

June 21, 2010

The Prestige Records Story

A special online fund-drive show featuring classic sides from the Prestige label. You can enjoy some great jazz and help us make our goal at the same time!

June 19, 2010

Pull Your Coat: Jazz News And Links For June 19, 2010

A new remembrance of Henry Grimes' 2003 return to jazz, Herbie Hancock's latest, and more.

June 15, 2010

Six Degrees Of Support: Help Keep Bringing Night Lights To You

Your connection to Night Lights might be closer than it appears. Why your contribution counts, for another year of Night Lights and more.

June 14, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Daddy-O! Father-And-Son Teams In Jazz

"Hey Dad, can I borrow the saxophone keys?" Night Lights pays tribute to the Father's Day holiday with music from Von and Chico Freeman, Duke and Mercer Ellington, Jackie and Rene McLean, and more.

May 30, 2010

Some Shows for Memorial Day

Music for departed jazz musicians, topical songs of World War II, and more.

May 29, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

The Last: Final Recordings Of Jazz Greats

In the final months of their lives, jazz artists have sometimes made recordings of great power and poignancy. This edition of Night Lights features music from Bill Evans, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, Clifford Brown, Stan Getz and more.

May 26, 2010

What's My Line? Ellington, Nat King Cole And Satchmo On TV

Could you have guessed who they were? Three giants of jazz on the 1950s TV quiz show.

May 22, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Shaw Sounds Final: Artie Shaw, 1949-54

From 1949 to 1954 Artie Shaw made a number of big-band, small-group, and even classical recordings that form one of the most dynamic chapters of his career-and the concluding one as well.

May 20, 2010

Pull Your Coat: Jazz News And Links For May 21th, 2010

Recent news about upcoming publications, the state of jazz radio and Hank Jones.

May 18, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

The Quiet One: An Appreciation Of Hank Jones, 1918-2010

A jazz pianist of swinging grace who gave us 70 years of subtle musical pleasure.

May 17, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Charles McPherson's Post-Bird Bop

Alto saxophonist Charles McPherson spent much of his early career under the spell of jazz great Charlie Parker-but he fired the Parker sound with his own intense energy and expressive skills.

May 15, 2010

Sam Rivers Mosaic Set This November

Mosaic Records will release a set of Rivers' 1970s New York City jazz loft recordings this autumn.

May 10, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Returning The Call: More From The Unsung Hardbop Heroes Of Chicago

City of big shoulders, city on the make, and city of a hip, subtle, and wryly street-smart hardbop sound-Chicago in the late 1950s and early 1960s. "Returning the Call" features the MJT + 3's rarely-heard first album, music from pianists John Young and Eddie Higgins, and a 1960 gathering of Chicago jazz talents led by trumpeter Paul Serrano.

May 3, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

1960: Jazz At The Dawn Of A Decade

It was a year that signaled the start of one of the most tumultuous eras in American history-and the change that was about to come began to be reflected in jazz as well.

April 20, 2010

Old School: Gang Starr's "Jazz Thing"

An early mix of hiphop and jazz by the late rapper Guru.

April 12, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

The "Birth Of The Cool" Songbook

The Birth of the Cool was a milestone in modern jazz-a handful of arrangements, compositions, recording sessions, and performances that, as historian Ted Gioia notes, "turned the jazz idiom on its head." This show highlights interpretations by Bill Evans, Charlie Parker, the Modern Jazz Quartet and others.

April 5, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Herbie Nichols' Third World

The story of Herbie Nichols, a pianist, composer and intellectual who grew up in the heart of the Harlem Renaissance, an overlooked figure in his lifetime whose music has been celebrated and recorded frequently in the past 25 years, and subject of a new biography. Author Mark Miller joins us for a look at Nichols' life and music.

April 5, 2010

1987: Jazz For The Big Dance In New Orleans

A video flashback to CBS' jazz introduction for the 1987 NCAA men's basketball championship game.

April 4, 2010

Talkin' Baseball: The Year The Yankees Won The Pennant

Music for baseball's Opening Day and a look back at a magical season for the most hated team in the game.

March 22, 2010

Marian McPartland: Her Music, Her Reflections

Afterglow highlights Marian McPartland's own compositions and excerpts from a 1975 interview with founding host Dick Bishop.

March 13, 2010

Play Night Lights For Me: Now Airing On KRML In Carmel, CA

Night Lights comes to a jazz station with a legendary cinematic connection.

March 12, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

The Wayne Shorter Songbook

Wayne Shorter was one of the great tenor saxophonists and composers of the modern jazz era, an enigmatic and searching musician and personality who was once labeled by jazz critic Larry Kart as "one of the most dangerous players to ever pick up a horn."

March 1, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Portraits Of Harlem

For decades Harlem was the capital of African-American culture in the United States. It inspired all sorts of musical tributes, from celebratory and sensationalistic swing songs to extended concert works by James P. Johnson, Benny Carter and Duke Ellington.

February 22, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Thelonious Monk: From Myth To Man (Part 2)

In the late 1950s Thelonious Monk’s star finally began to rise. But even as the pianist hit artistic and commercial peaks, other problems began to set in.

February 21, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Clark's Last Leap: Sonny Clark, 1961-62

Sonny Clark was a young pianist with an already-impressive jazz legacy when he began a year-long string of classic hardbop recordings that ended suddenly with his death at the age of 31.

February 15, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Thelonious Monk: From Man To Myth (Part 1)

Thelonious Monk was 'the high priest of bebop,' a family man, a bohemian icon, and one of the most significant composers of modern jazz.

February 1, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Suite History: Jazz Composers And The African-American Odyssey

Duke Ellington, Oliver Nelson, John Carter, and Wynton Marsalis all undertook a weighty artistic task-to represent the historical journey of African-Americans in music. Historian Michael McGerr joins the program as we play music from all four composers' extended works and talk about their place in jazz history.

February 1, 2010

Dedicated: An Interview With Grammy Winner Kurt Elling

Kurt Elling won his first Grammy Sunday night, for his John Coltrane tribute CD "Dedicated to You." Listen to music from the CD and an interview with the singer from a recent Afterglow program.

February 1, 2010

2010 Jazz Grammy Winners

Chick Corea, Kurt Elling, and Dan Morgenstern are a few of the jazz winners from last night's ceremony.

January 29, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Chicago Calling: Unsung Heroes Of The City's Hardbop Scene

Chicago is a historic capital of early jazz and post-World War II blues, but in the 1950s and early 60s it also had a thriving hardbop scene. Musicians such as Ira Sullivan, Wilbur Ware and Von Freeman played with a bluesy, brawny edge, suffused with what Chicago native and jazz critic Larry Kart calls "an air of downhome experimentation."

January 22, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

Cafe Society: The Wrong Place For The Right People

Cafe Society was New York City's first integrated nightclub, the place where Billie Holiday first sang the anti-lynching anthem "Strange Fruit," and a cultural flashpoint for artists, jazz musicians, intellectuals, and political activists of the 1940s.

January 14, 2010

Pull Your Coat: Jazz News And Links For January 15, 2010

The weekly round-up of interesting jazz links from around the web.

January 12, 2010

Night Lights Best Of 2009: Books Edition

Some jazz books from the past year that caught Night Lights' eyes.

January 11, 2010

Night Lights Best Of 2009: Music Edition

Releases both historic and modern that grabbed the attention of Night Lights' ears over the past year.

January 4, 2010

Fathers and sons in jazz

The Past Recaptured: 2009 Reissues

A sampling of some favorite reissues from the past year, including Stan Getz, Denny Zeitlin, Freddie Hubbard, Jackie McLean, and Tony Williams.

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