Black Music

PIERRE MICHEL JEAN/AFP via Getty Images

Versatility is one thing; possessing the aptitude to match a boundless musical curiosity is another. Leonard Bernstein had both; Terence Blanchard also has both.

Max Barrett

A visionary with seemingly boundless energy, pianist Lara Downes is clearing new paths in the classical music landscape, expanding minds and spurring social change.

Peter Checchia

In hard times, we inspire. As musicians, that’s one way that our art serves the world.

John Coltrane composed these words in December 1964, as part of a poem he called A Love Supreme.

I have seen God – I have seen ungodly – none can be greater – none can compare to God.

Getty Images/BojanMirkovic

Throughout the month of February, join us for a special classical and jazz celebration of Black History Month on WRTI.

When most people think of a love song, it’s usually about being in, falling in, or falling out of a romantic relationship. Yet, we know love is not singularly focused on passion and can refer to other matters that stir our hearts, minds, and souls. As host of the “Spirit Soul Music” edition of Ovations on WRTI, Sundays from 6 to 9 AM, I believe that music, like love, should chart an adventurous, yet chilled-out path that opens unheralded gateways to one’s heartstrings.

Getty Images/ Gilles Petard/Redferns

It was 2008 when I authored the biography, "HAZEL SCOTT: The Pioneering Journey of a Jazz Pianist from Café Society to Hollywood to HUAC." At that time, Hazel Scott’s name conjured fond but distant memories among an older generation.

Getty Images/Alex Wong

WRTI proudly remembers Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. with special classical music and jazz programming honoring the remarkable legacy of the civil rights leader and visionary, born 92 years ago. Below are details about what we have planned.

How can a moment of protest and isolation inspire creative rebirth? That's the question renowned pianist Lara Downes is exploring as the host of a new video series for NPR Music, simply titled Amplify With Lara Downes.

University of Pennsylvania: Marian Anderson Collection of Photographs, 1898-1992

One of America’s most admired civil rights icons, though she disliked the label, wasn’t a political or religious figure—she was a singer with a “rich, vibrant contralto of intrinsic beauty," in the words of opera critic Alan Blyth. She was Marian Anderson (1897-1993), and she called Philadelphia home. 

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