Give Now

Night Lights Classic Jazz

Come On Down To Central Avenue: Jazz In Mid-20th Century L.A.

Jam sessions, bebop, r and b, big bands, visits from Hollywood celebrities--as the center of African-American culture in L.A., Central Avenue had it all.

"Black California"

In this program we explore the sounds of the mid-20th-century Los Angeles jazz scene with historian Steve Isoardi, editor of the oral history book Central Avenue Sounds.

Jam sessions, bebop, r & b, big bands, visits from Hollywood celebrities; as the center of African-American culture in L.A., Central Avenue had it all. We’ll hear the music of artists such as:

  • Dexter Gordon
  • Howard McGhee
  • Hadda Brooks
  • Charles Mingus
  • Gerald Wilson
  • Lionel Hampton

and other jazz greats who got their start on the Avenue or spent significant time there. With Mr. Isoardi as our guide, we’ll also take a verbal stroll through the vibrant streets of the Central Avenue neighborhood circa 1945.

Stay Connected

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Night Lights Classic Jazz:

Support For Indiana Public Media From

About Night Lights

Search Night Lights

where to hear night lights

This Week On Afterglow

Written In The Stars: The Songs Of Harold Arlen

"Blues In The Night," "Stormy Weather," and "Over The Rainbow" and many more of the blockbuster hits from songwriter Harold Arlen.

Read more »

Afterglow is WFIU's weekly program of jazz and American popular song hosted by David Brent Johnson.

More from Afterglow »