KPLU Studio Sessions
3:00 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

Monty Alexander, John Clayton, Jeff Hamilton—‘Nuff Said

Monty Alexander, John Clayton and Jeff Hamilton in the KPLU Seattle studios on August 9, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

“’Nuff said,” is right.  When jazz fans hear the names Monty Alexander, John Clayton and Jeff Hamilton in conjunction, they know they’ll be treated great music, played with inspiration, joy and absolutely amazing technical chops.  

Monty (piano), John (bass) and Jeff (drums) have performed together off and on for almost 40 years. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
2:52 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Booker T. Jones: The heart of soul

Booker T. Jones performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on June 28, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

During the 1960s there was a golden age of soul music in America. Some of the greatest songs from that era came from the Stax Recording Studio in Memphis, Tennessee. A short list of artists who recorded there could include Otis Redding, Rufus Thomas, Sam & Dave and the instrumental band led by Hammond organist, Booker T. Jones—Booker T. And The M.G.s.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
9:05 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Gregory Porter: Football's loss is jazz's gain

Gregory Porter performs live in the KPLU Seattle studios on June 21, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

On his first trip to Seattle, Grammy-nominated vocalist Gregory Porter stopped by the KPLU Seattle studios for a live studio session that you do not want to miss.  This also happened to be the day that Blue Note Records announced the release of Porter's new album, Liquid Spirit. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
8:30 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Frank Vignola and Vinny Raniolo: 'Better than caffeine'

Vinny Raniolo (left) and Frank Vignola performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on May 30, 2013
Justin Steyer KPLU

Frank Vignola is well-known as one of the most amazing guitarists on today’s jazz scene. Five years ago he hooked up with a young, extremely accomplished guitarist named Vinny Raniolo.

Since then they’ve worked together in a number of different group configurations but they’re at their best when it’s just the two of them, each armed with an acoustic guitar and a great desire to have a good time.

And that’s exactly what they do in this studio session with jazz host, Abe Beeson.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
2:59 pm
Wed May 29, 2013

The Greyboy Allstars: A serious party band

Mike Andrews performing live with the Greyboy Allstars on May 17, 2013 in the KPLU Seattle studios.
Justin Steyer KPLU

During this performance interview with The Greyboy Allstars, KPLU jazz host, Abe Beeson, called their latest CD (Inland Emperor) ‘the party album of 2013.’

The Greyboy Allstars’ reputation as a party/dance band is well-earned.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
1:06 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Ann Hampton Callaway: Singing the standards, Streisand and making it up as she goes

Ann Hampton Callaway performs live in the KPLU Seattle studios on May 10, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Vocalist, pianist and composer, Ann Hampton Callaway has had success in the worlds of jazz, Broadway and cabaret. She’s also one of our favorite KPLU Studio Session guests.

We invite her to perform every time she passes through Seattle because, from one visit to the next, we never know what kind of surprises she’ll treat us to.

This time around, with host Abe Beeson and a small audience of KPLU Leadership Circle members, Ann turned Our Love Is Here To Stay into an audience-participation scat-along which was enjoyed by all.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:51 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Joan Osborne and The Holmes Brothers are a recipe for soul

Joan Osborne performing live with The Holmes Brothers in the KPLU Seattle Studios on April 19, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Want a good recipe for soul music?

Here’s what you do: Start with vocalist, Joan Osborne, who has had pop music hits, performed on The Grand Old Oprey, toured with members of The Grateful Dead and yet never strayed from her roots in rhythm ‘n blues music.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
2:51 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Molly Ringwald: Rediscovering her jazz roots

Actress/singer Molly Ringwald performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on April 15, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

In 2010, actress/singer, Molly Ringwald wrote her first book, Getting The Pretty Back. The "pretty" in the title is a reference to what is perhaps Molly’s most famous movie, "Pretty In Pink" (1986), directed by John Hughes.

She also worked with Hughes in "Sixteen Candles" and "The Breakfast Club." But before Molly Ringwald became one of the world’s most famous teenagers, she was a jazz singer. 

Yes. She recorded a traditional jazz (Dixieland) album when she was 6 years old, accompanied by her father, Bob Ringwald, and his Fulton Street Jazz Band.

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Jimmy Jazzoid
2:21 pm
Mon April 29, 2013

Relive KPLU's Jimmy Jazzoid Rides Again

Justin Steyer KPLU

Need more Jimmy?

You can listen to the wildly popular, live radio performance of Jimmy Jazzoid Rides Again below! Want to take Jimmy Jazzoid with you, wherever you go?  You can download the podcast here

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KPLU Studio Sessions
2:01 pm
Sat April 20, 2013

Holly Cole: Reinventing the familiar

Canadian vocalist, Holly Cole, is one of greatest song interpreters alive. 

She can take a song you think you know and bring something out of it that you’ve never heard before. 

For example, her latest CD, Night, contains Holly’s inventive re-imagining of a James Bond theme (You Only Live Twice), as well as songs by Danny O’Keefe, Tom Waits, Captain Beefheart, Rod McKuen and Gordon Lightfoot. 

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3:06 pm
Wed April 10, 2013

The Creators Of Jazz Appreciation Month Start Celebrating

A group of musicians and major donors pose with Lionel Hampton's vibraphone at the 2013 Jazz Appreciation Month launch. From left: Mark Dibner of The Argus Fund, drummer Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Fran Morris Rosman of the Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation, pianist Randy Weston, Richard Rosman of the Ella Fitzgerald foundation and Smithsonian American History Museum Director John Gray.
Patrick Jarenwattananon NPR

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 2:42 pm

The 12th official Jazz Appreciation Month began when April did. But today, the Smithsonian Museum of American History, which founded the JAM campaign, kick started its own celebration with a series of performances, discussions and ceremonies.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
4:12 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Singer Jackie Ryan's life in music

Jackie Ryan and Seattle pianist, Randy Halberstadt, perform live in the KPLU Seattle studios on March 11, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

In this studio session singer, Jackie Ryan, gives us three of her favorites:  a gospel-tinged version of Accentuate The Positive, a beautiful reading of I Loves You, Porgy and the Spanish-language song, La Puerta, dedicated to her mother.

As you’ll hear Jackie  say in this interview, she grew up singing.  After years as a touring R&B singer, Jackie discovered jazz and never looked back.  Today, she’s one of America’s finest jazz singers. 

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Take 5
5:01 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Take 5 goes meta: A list of 5 songs about lists

Detail from the cover art to Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson.
Verve Records

Over the past few years, Take 5’s theme-based music lists have covered a wide variety of subjects. We’ve covered all the seasons of the year, all the holidays, different types of weather, the careers of jazz legends, the cutting-edge work of up-and-coming jazz artists and have gotten into the musical minutiae of things like flowers, birds, baseball, prohibition and civil rights.  And now it’s time for Take 5 to go meta and present a five-song list of songs about….LISTS.  It had to happen sooner or later.

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11:59 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Time is on their side: Ageless jazz drumming

"Killer" Ray Appleton, a veteran drummer with the wisdom of experience and ageless swing.
Jimmy Katz Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 11:59 am

I've been listening to two very good new albums led by drummers. After learning that both men are in their early 70s, I can't help but wonder how I process that fact in what I hear.

"Killer" Ray Appleton (b. 1941) and Barry Altschul (b. 1943) practice different styles. But they both came of musical age in the hard-bop era, spent many years living in Europe and eventually returned to New York. In other words, they've each got a lot of experience.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
4:13 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Juan de Marcos and The Afro-Cuban All Stars: The Soul Of Cuba

Juan de Marcos (center) and the Afro-Cuban All Stars performing live on KPLU from the KCTS 9 studios on Feburay 5, 2013. See more photos
Justin Steyer KPLU

On a recent visit to Seattle, Juan de Marcos and The Afro-Cuban All Stars stopped by for a three-song studio session with KPLU in the KCTS 9 studios.  How good was it? 

Well, as host, Abe Beeson says, “If this music doesn’t move you, you’ve got no place to go.”

Watch the full interview and performance:

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