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Recent Shows

Dear Martin, P.S.: More Jazz Tributes To Martin Luther King Jr.

Billy Taylor It's A Matter Of Pride

This sequel to a previous program of jazz salutes to the civil-rights icon includes music from Bobby Hutcherson, Max Roach, and Herbie Hancock.

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Best Historical Releases 2020

Monk Palo Alto 1968

Night Lights' annual survey of notable reissues and historical releases includes music from Bill Evans, Thelonious Monk, Shirley Scott, and others.

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Swingers: Hugh Hefner, Playboy Magazine, And Jazz

Monk Palo Alto 1968

In 1953 a young entrepreneur started a magazine that would help bring about the sexual revolution in America—and he was also a passionate jazz fan who used that magazine to help promote the music he loved.

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Have Yourself a Very Quiet Christmas

Monk Palo Alto 1968

Night Lights pays tribute to the holidays in the mellowest of moods.

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Conover's Coming Over: Willis Conover And Jazz At The VOA

Monk Palo Alto 1968

Working for decades as a broadcaster for the Voice of America, Conover was perhaps the most influential and widely-heard jazz DJ of the 20th century. He brought the music into eastern Europe and other areas of the world where jazz was either repressed or commercially unavailable.

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Rookie Of The Year: Curtis Fuller '57

Monk Palo Alto 1968

Six albums as a leader. Sideman appearances with John Coltrane, Bud Powell, and Jimmy Smith. The story of trombonist Curtis Fuller's first year on record.

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Jazz Impressions Of Brubeck

Monk Palo Alto 1968

In the 1950s and 60s the Dave Brubeck Quartet became one of the most popular jazz acts in the world--one of the reasons why the group ended up doing a State Department tour in 1958 at the height of the Cold War that took them to countries such as India, Poland, and Iraq.

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Satchmo, Take Two: Louis Armstrong At The Movies

Louis Armstrong at the movies

Louis Armstrong was a legendary innovative trumpeter, a vocalist who had a profound impact on jazz singing, and a dynamic entertainer--and he got a chance to showcase all these aspects of his talent in 28 full-length films and several short features in which he appeared between 1931 and 1969.

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Night Lights Blog

"Thomas Merton Experiments with Meditations on Jazz": A Poem And A Night Lights Program

Brilliant Corners Summer 2020

"The great chain of witnesses": a poem by Betsy Sholl in the new issue of Brilliant Corners drew its inspiration in part from a Night Lights show.

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Detroit Jazz Artists On Night Lights

Alice Coltrane Universal Consciousness

Explore some of the notable musicians who emerged from the 20th century Detroit jazz scene.

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"No Time Like Now": Music And Conversation With Vibraphonist Dick Sisto

dick sisto play xylophone

"Serious jazz musicians are into their music like it's a religion," says Sisto.

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A Day For Doris Day

Doris Day in 1946 at New York City’s Aquarium nightclub.

A tribute to Doris Day

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A Day For Doris Day

Doris Day in 1946 at New York City’s Aquarium nightclub.

A career-spanning musical tribute from WFIU's afternoon jazz program "Just You And Me."

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Playing Changes: Music And Conversation With Jazz Writer Nate Chinen

david chinen

Jazz critic Nate Chinen talks about his recent book "Playing Changes: Jazz For The New Century," and we hear music from some of the artists discussed as well.

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Read Him Madly: A Duke Ellington Bibliography

david chinen

Some Night Lights recommendations for reading about one of jazz's greatest figures, as well as some programs featuring his music.

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Mosaic Is Planning A Black and White Label Box Set

david chinen

Chronicling a West Coast record label of the 1940s.

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