Jazz with Jeff Duperon

Friday, 6 to 10 pm

Kick off your weekend with Jeff Duperon as he takes a cruise through the current.

It was just a year ago that WRTI partnered with the Philadelphia Jazz Project to present a very unique concert featuring Afro-Brazilian percussion in Big Band Jazz style! It was the Philadelphia premiere of Letieres Leite & Orkestra Rumpilezz at the Temple Performing Arts Center, with guests Arturo O'Farrill and Steve Bernstein, and Another Holiday For Skins with Pablo Batista, Mike Boone, Luke Carlos O'Reilly, and company.

The Legendary Benny Golson Visits WRTI

Jun 29, 2016

One of the greats of jazz, tenor saxophonist and composer Benny Golson, stopped by the WRTI studios on June 29th to talk to News Anchor and Arts Reporter Meridee Duddleston. Golson was on his way to the Free Library of Philadelphia, where WRTI Jazz Host Jeff Duperon interviewed him about his just-released autobiography Whisper Not.

The summer jazz festival season is about to start. Blockbuster performances at the “Big Three” longest-running summer jazz fests still engender re-makes and recordings. These historic performances live on as benchmarks. Now, starting with the Montreux Jazz Festival — founded in 1967 — WRTI examines highlights from Montreux, Newport, and Monterey.

Dave Tavani

A new work by master percussionist Pablo Batista uses changing rhythms, music, and dance to tell the story of how people forced from their homeland, survived and thrived by creating a new home. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more about El Viaje, a music and dance narrative in eight scenes, featuring 22 performers in a mix of authentic Afro-Cuban bata drumming, chant and dance, with elements of classical music, jazz and blues, rhythm & blues, funk and salsa.

Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer. Or is it? If you've ever been to Longwood Gardens' Wine & Jazz Festival you might say summer actually kicks off on the first Saturday in June. WRTI was there, once again, on June 4th with games and giveaways, the Gardens provided world-class jazz (Arturo Sandoval anyone?), and local wineries did their part to boost spirits even higher.

The vocal virtuosity of one of the last century’s jazz giants lives on through those who came after her, scores of albums, and now a U.S. Postal Service stamp. WRTI’s Meridee Duddleston and Bob Perkins consider the late, great Sarah Vaughan. Check  out the Philadelphia Clef Club's Sarah Vaughan Tribute on Thursday, June 2nd from 5 to 9 pm with live music and a display of rare and vintage photographs and art works capturing the "Divine One," exhibited along with U.S. Postal Service postage stamps and memorabilia.

Ralph J. Gleason is my hero.

It's impossible to put an exact date on it, but I think I started reading his column in Rolling Stone in the summer of 1973. I was 14 years old and already immersed in music. Reading him, I discovered you could write about music and get paid for it — and then I discovered his writing was just as immersive as the music we both loved.

The late Eartha Kitt’s strength, vulnerability, and sensuality inspired singer/songwriter René Marie’s 2014 Grammy-nominated album, I Wanna be Evil, With Love to Eartha Kitt.  Marie knows firsthand the risks of setting a new course in life.  When she was in her 40s, she quit her day job at a bank to devote herself to singing and composing fulltime. It was a decision that was not without repercussions. And about a year later, her marriage ended.

For a musician, the words “sanctuary,” “retreat,” and “haven” suggest attractive possibilities for creative expression. The Jazz Residency Program at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts isn’t based on the isolation these places evoke, but it does provide an environment conducive to a creative stream. The program is aimed at local jazz artists who can write music.

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