Matt Silver

Matt Silver is a writer and broadcaster who has been performing, in one way or another, since his grandparents told him as a toddler that singing "Sunrise, Sunset" in rooms full of strangers was the cool thing to do.

His love of jazz comes from his father, Ken, an accomplished clarinetist, bandleader, and educator, who's passed on his extensive knowledge of the Real Book and an abiding love for jazz tunes with Broadway origins.

In addition to writing for WRTI's Arts Desk, Matt can frequently be heard hosting on the jazz side, whistling Gershwin or Bernstein with gusto, or trying to replicate the sounds of Stan Getz and Larry McKenna on his saxophone, which he's found is a good deal harder than it looks.

He is a proud member of that group of hardy souls who got their start at WRTI hosting Jazz through the Night.
 

Ways to Connect

September 14, 2020. Philadelphia born-and-bred trumpeter Wallace Roney learned from legends, played with legends, and ultimately died one too soon, passing away from complications of the coronavirus this past March at age 59. The former Young Lion whom JazzTimes once dubbed “the man with the golden horn” got to play alongside his heroes—giants like Philly Joe Jones, Herbie Hancock, Art Blakey, and Miles Davis. The story goes that Roney was the only trumpet protégé Miles ever took on; he never hoarded his riches.

Philadelphia's Best Of The Bass, Part 1 includes WRTI's 8 favorite bebop and hard bop players. Philadelphia's Best Of The Bass, Part 2 features some of the most impactful jazz, rock, funk, and fusion bassists to have come out of Philly. This final installment of the series showcases artists at the crossroads of jazz, pop, hip-hop, and R&B.


This is a glimpse, a cross-section of some of the most impactful bass players to have come out of Philadelphia. Sometimes their respective impacts were local, sometimes national, sometimes global. Collectively, they've excelled in several different eras and idioms, from bebop and hard bop, to free jazz and post-bop and fusion, all the way through Philly Soul and R&B to hip-hop.

Weather Report founder Joe Zawinul once famously declared that the city produced "the world's greatest bassists." This list will show you why.

September 7, 2020. With Christian McBride, the question isn’t what can or can’t he do; the question is, rather: What hasn’t he done yet? On For Jimmy, Wes and Oliver, the latest from the Christian McBride Big Band (CMBB), the do-everything bassist teams up, incredibly for the first time, with another locally-sourced, larger-than-life contemporary jazz icon.

Philadelphia's Best Of The Bass, Part 1 includes WRTI's 8 favorite bebop and hard bop players. The list of some of the most impactful bass players to have come out of Philadelphia continues with this group of jazz, rock, funk, and fusion bassists.


August 31, 2020. Miles Davis once said, “You can tell the history of jazz in four words: Louis Armstrong. Charlie Parker.” August 29th, 2020 marked the 100th anniversary of the latter’s birth, and alto saxophonists Vincent Herring, Bobby Watson, and Gary Bartz got a head start on celebrating earlier this year with Bird at 100—a worthy tribute to the man of insatiable appetites who became a God-like figure to the Beat generation and redefined jazz to mean the highest form of musical improvisation.

August 24, 2020. Champian Fulton’s first paid gig was playing Clark Terry’s 75th birthday party. She was 10 years old. Now, at 35, the pianist and vocalist is more than just precocious and well-connected; she’s ambitious, too—averaging nearly one new release every year since her 2007 debut. But her latest, Birdsong, released to coincide with Charlie Parker’s centennial, might be her loosest and most joyful recording to date.

August 17, 2020. A group of musicians from a place called Hell’s Kitchen exhorting you to smile might seem a little presumptuous in times like these. Then again, what do you have to lose?

Augut 3, 2020. Instead of telling people about the benefits of ethnic and cultural diversity, sometimes it’s more effective to just show them. And then, all of a sudden, to paraphrase Marshall McLuhan, the medium—jazz in this case—becomes the message.

July 20, 2020. Turns out Winnipeg, the capital and largest city of the Canadian province of Manitoba, is more than just a cold, forbidding outpost that once lost— and has since regained— its NHL franchise. It’s also a not-half-bad place for jazz.

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