Jazz Tonight with Greg Bridges

Monday-Thursday 8-10pm on WVTF
  • Hosted by Greg Bridges

Born and raised in Oakland, California, Greg Bridges has been in radio for nearly 30 years.  Greg began his professional radio career at KJAZ Radio in Alameda, California where he came into his own as an on-air announcer, interviewer and host of a variety of shows. The proud dad of two children, Simone and Miles, Greg was musically inspired by his drum playing father, the late Oliver Johnson. He moved to Europe in 1970 and spent 16 years drumming for Steve Lacy, Roswell Rudd, Roscoe Mitchell, Jean Luc Ponty, Archie Shepp and others. “Being in broadcasting has brought me many bright moments,” he notes, “Hanging out in a dressing room with Harry ‘Sweets’ Edison, sharing jokes and conversation with Miles Davis, receiving a gift in the mail for my newborn daughter from Betty Carter. There have been and continue to be many bright moments.”

Just before he died in 2009, Joe Castro sat down with his son James to listen to some tapes. The reel-to-reels were full of Castro's own decades-old recordings, in which the jazz pianist jammed with his contemporaries.

"It was kind of like a shock," James says, "because right when we put the first tape on, it sounded like it was recorded yesterday."

Father and son went through more than 40 hours of tape. James says he was used to hearing his dad back up other musicians.

In 1955, jazz pianist Erroll Garner played a concert in Carmel, Calif. When his manager spotted a tape recorder rolling backstage, she grabbed the reels and decided to release them.

Of all Marian McPartland's attributes, possibly the most underrated was her ability as a composer. Her piano pieces have entered the jazz repertoire, while some of her songs — with lyrics by such stars as Johnny Mercer, Sammy Cahn and Peggy Lee — have become part of The Great American Songbook.

Born To Be Blue: Chet Baker In 5 Songs

Mar 25, 2016

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