Jazz Through the Night

Weeknights and Sunday, midnight to 6 am; Saturday, 2 to 6 am

Early-morning hosts spin classics and new releases from our jazz library.

April 5, 2021. West coaster George Kahn is one of those melodic, easy-swinging pianists that sometimes gets lost in the shuffle. He’s not edgy, nor experimental; he appropriates liberally from the Great American Songbook. He’s unabashedly straight-ahead, which, in this day and age, might be a revolutionary act in itself.

Bill Douthart

When Uri Caine speaks in his deep, low voice, each phrase unfurls with rich, diverse, all-inclusive information. In a fashion, it’s as if the Philadelphia-born pianist and composer is looking to get everything inside his head out, quietly, but succinctly.

Courtesy of the artist

How does trombonist-composer Ernest Stuart best show his Philadelphia-ness? Of course, there is his music. Stuart has a post-bop-jazz-based but often genre-fluid sound that merges influences from Philadelphia soul past and present. Think Gamble & Huff and John Legend melded with alternative electronic pop á la Radiohead. In his mind, it’s a very Philadelphia thing to do.

March 29, 2021. This Bitter Earth, Veronica Swift’s sophomore release from Mack Avenue Records, takes on issues of weighty social concern. Most everyone’s doing that now, it seems—and, hey, that’s probably a good thing. But the reason this album succeeds is because Swift was a preeminent vocal stylist before and still is.

Katyayani Krishnan

When trumpeter Alonzo Demetrius arrived at Berklee College of Music in the fall of 2014, he expected to have his musical world opened up to new pathways. What came as a surprise is the way the school broadened his political thinking as well.

March 15, 2021. With a grand stroke of prescience, NEA Jazz Master Maria Schneider crafted a double album about being polarized by the demands of a digital society and longing for human connection, all before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Courtesy of Joanna Pascale

Jazz has featured women contributors from its inception. Yet beyond vocalists, female composers and instrumentalists are disturbingly underrepresented across the genre. However, as society evolves, outdated stereotypes are being challenged as more women in music take leadership roles—both on and off the stage.

March 9, 2021. Kendrah Butler-Waters' love for jazz, composition, arranging, and performative musicality shines throughout her debut solo album, Faith Walk.

March 1, 2021. WRTI is celebrating women bandleaders and their music to commemorate Women’s History Month. This week we're shining the spotlight on The Path by Chien Chien Lu, a Taiwanese vibraphonist whose own path led her to Philly’s University of the Arts for grad school to study with vibe master Tony Miceli. This is her debut album as a leader.

It feels strange calling Robert Glasper’s R+R=NOW a “supergroup” because every group Glasper leads seems worthy of that appellation. Yet, there is something particularly relevant right now about this one, which was named out of Glasper’s desire for the group’s music to be both an accurate reflection of the times and an effective and immediate response to them.

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