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.”

Hugh Masekela was an up-and-coming trumpeter, all of 20, when he took an overnight train from Johannesburg to Cape Town to meet a pianist everyone was talking about in South Africa: Abdullah Ibrahim, then known as Dollar Brand.

The Ella Fitzgerald Centennial: Our 'First Lady Of Song'

Apr 26, 2017

Her voice is instantly recognizable. Her youthful exuberance, pure sound and positive energy just make you feel good. Her incredible technical abilities were self-evident, but when she sang, she radiated a joy consistent with her own character both on and off the bandstand.

Ella Fitzgerald, who would have turned 100 Tuesday, was one of the most beloved and versatile singers of the 20th century. In a career that spanned six decades, Fitzgerald recorded hundreds of songs, including definitive versions of many standards. Along the way, she influenced generations of singers.

But the first thing that strikes you about Fitzgerald is that voice.

One hundred years ago Tuesday, in a working-poor neighborhood of Newport News, Va., a laundress and a shipyard worker had a baby girl. The father soon disappeared, and the mother and child moved north to New York. The mother died. The girl ran away and became one of the most important singers of the 20th century.

Ella Fitzgerald could sing anything: a silly novelty song, like her breakthrough hit, "A-Tisket, A-Tasket." A samba that scatted. A ballad, spooling out like satin.

Record Store Day, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, is a consumer ploy in the guise of a cultural event. Or, depending on your vantage, maybe it's the other way around. Whatever the case, record stores across the country and around the world are happily (or gamely) bracing for impact: Record Store Day 2017 falls this Saturday, April 22, with a wave of exclusive releases, in-store appearances and other retail enticements.

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