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.

Called "the best friend a song ever had," Nathaniel Adams Cole was such a huge success in popular music that Capitol Records became known as “The House that Nat Built.” He was a leading jazz pianist, but it was his light and liquid singing of “Mona Lisa,” “Nature Boy,” and many other hits that won millions of fans in three decades. He's your No. 8 Essential Jazz Artist on WRTI 90.1

If it’s refined and sophisticated, but it’s jumping and swinging and striding all at the same time, you’re talking Count Basie, and you voted William James Basie the No. 9 Most Essential Jazz Artist.

Celebrating the influence of the Philadelphia visionary musician, philosopher, composer, and band leader Sun Ra, Philadelphia Jazz Project presents Satellites Are Spinning: A Sizzling, Sonic Celebration of Sun Ra.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released.


A continuity and a break: That's the history of The Bad Plus in a nutshell. An acoustic piano trio with the combustion properties of a post-punk band, it emerged in the early 2000s to an uproar — its surging attack and shrewd repertoire were framed as a radical split from the jazz tradition. Gradually a more perceptive view emerged, one that acknowledged where the band was really coming from.

WRTI 90.1's Top 100 Jazz Countdown of 2017: The List!

Dec 25, 2017

In the final days of 2017, we celebrated the new jazz releases that made it a truly banner (musical) year with a Top 100 Countdown.

Looking for the perfect soundtrack for the holidays? Tired of the same old music? We've got a fix for that. We asked WRTI’s hosts and arts reporters to tell us their go-to holiday favorites. Here are their answers, and the memories, feelings, or just beautiful sounds that inspired them.

Spend your holiday season curled up and comfortable with your dial tuned to WRTI. We're bringing you warm doses of yuletide cheer during our regular jazz programs, with holiday classics from Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington nipping at your ears, along with soon-to-be holiday favorites from the Michael Treni Big Band and Gregory Porter.

It's hard to believe, but September 23rd marks 91 years since the birth of John Coltrane, who left us way too soon in 1967 at age 40; that makes 50 years since his passing. So it's a good time, we think, to gather together and remember one of Philadelphia’s favorite former residents.

What are some exciting events that have happened in the month of August? In 1620, the Mayflower set sail from Southampton, England with 102 Pilgrims. In 1866, President Andrew Johnson declared the U.S. Civil War over, and in 1896, gold was first discovered in the Klondike. And in jazz history? Three of the most renowned pianists were born.

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