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Nate Chinen

Editorial Director

Nate Chinen has been writing about music for more than 25 years. He spent a dozen of them working as a critic for The New York Times, and helmed a long-running column for JazzTimes.

As the director of editorial content at WBGO, he worked with the multi-platform program Jazz Night in America and contributed a range of coverage to NPR Music.

A 13-time winner of the Helen Dance–Robert Palmer Award for Excellence in Writing, presented by the Jazz Journalists Association, Nate is also coauthor of Myself Among Others: A Life in Music, the 2003 autobiography of festival impresario and producer George Wein.

His work appears in Best Music Writing 2011, Pop When the World Falls Apart: Music in the Shadow of Doubt (Duke University Press, 2012), and Miles Davis: The Complete Illustrated History (Voyageur Press, 2012).

Nate was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. He started his career as a music critic in 1996, at the Philadelphia City Paper. There he covered one of the great jazz cities at ground level, writing a steady stream of reviews and features, along with a biweekly column, The Gig.

He moved to New York City in 1998, and began writing for a range of publications, including DownBeat, Blender, and Vibe. For several years he was the jazz critic for Weekend America, a syndicated radio program. He covered jazz for the Village Voice from 2003 through 2005, when he became aregular contributor to The New York Times. Around the same time, he revived The Gig as a column for JazzTimes, where it ran in 125 consecutive installments.

Starting in 2017 and until August, 2022, Nate was director of editorial content at WBGO, based in Newark, NJ. — managing the full spectrum of editorial coverage at wbgo.org, and joining radio veteran Greg Bryant as co-creator and co-host ofJazz United, which won the JJA’s award for Podcast of the Year in each of its two seasons.

A regular contributor to NPR Music and correspondent for NPR’s Morning Edition, Nate is a consulting producer withJazz Night in America, a multimedia program hosted by Christian McBride.

"I'm thrilled to join the team at WRTI," says Nate, "and to serve this amazing musical community again. A lot of exciting things are ahead.”

Nate lives in Wynnewood, PA with his wife and two daughters.