Jazz Through the Night

Weeknights and Sunday, midnight to 6 am; Saturday, 2 to 6 am
  • Hosted by Courtney Blue, Tim Johnstone, heard on FM / HD1 and the jazz stream
  • Local Host Courtney Blue, Tim Johnstone, Ross Amico

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

This year, 2016, marks the 100th anniversary of the first Great Migration, the movement of millions of African-Americans from the rural south to other parts of the U.S. that promised greater social and economic justice and opportunities. The migration included many excellent jazz musicians, some of whom became household names. For these artists, the Great Migration also provided inspiration for their creative expression.

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.

Everybody has one or two favorite jazz standards, knowing them best as vocals, instrumentals, or even as big band arrangements. So, all Memorial Day Weekend, WRTI will explore the great renditions of jazz standards. Celebrate the unofficial start of summer by doing a "Double Take" with WRTI. At the top and bottom of every hour we'll play both an instrumental and a vocal version of a well-known standard. 

Classical and Jazz Weekend Highlights on WRTI

May 20, 2016

Turn on your radio, or go online, to hear the best classical music and jazz programs throughout the weekend. Here are some highlights...

Deneka Peniston

The virtuosity of the legendary Miles Davis speaks through another trumpeter who follows him in tune and time. WRTI’s Meridee Duddleston talks with the musician behind the sound in the newly released biopic, Miles Ahead.

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.

George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue is performed by orchestras everywhere. But not everyone has heard the original jazz band version, composed for a 1924 experimental concert that blurred the boundaries between jazz and classical music. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more.

William P. Gottlieb

To celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month, we asked members of the jazz and arts community to tell us what jazz tune they would like to listen to right now. 

Pioneering bassist and composer Jymie Merritt was born in Philadelphia in 1926. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, he made a name for himself nationally but also founded a groundbreaking Philadelphia-based band that continues to inspire today’s generation of jazz artists.

NPR’s Jazz Night in America honored Jymie Merritt with a special concert this past January at World Cafe Live. The concert will air on WRTI, Sunday, April 10th at 8 pm. Watch video here!