Ang Santos

Reporter

Ang Santos began his career in news journalism at WBGO in January 2014 as an intern. His love for telling stories about Newark's history landed him a position as a feature reporter. Before his time at WBGO, Ang was an overnight jock at Brookdale Public Radio on the Jersey Shore.

Since joining the news team, Ang prides himself on the ability to report on everything in any situation; hyperlocal stories, political conventions, major league sports teams, music. He's contributed reports to WHYY in Philadelphia and NPR news.

Outside of WBGO, Ang enjoys vegan cuisine with his loving girlfriend and tends to the needs of his many cats.

Ways to Connect

New Jersey Anti-Hunger Coalition / Center For Food Action

President Trump’s proposed budget would cut $190 billion dollars from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 

“Some of the people in the program now would no longer be eligible and no longer have access.  There won’t be enough money,” said Adele LaTourette, director, New Jersey Anti-Hunger Coalition.  “Basically we’re talking about gutting the SNAP program.  Which is the frontline of defense against hunger.   I don’t know what the thinking is behind this except there isn’t much thinking.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

On the morning of April 19th, 1995, Kathy Sanders dropped off her grandchildren at the daycare center located in the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.  Hours later her life would change forever.

“Twenty-two years ago, the morning of the bombing, I became a victim.  I didn’t have any choice.  When I began to pray for the men who killed my grandchildren, I don’t know what it did for [Timothy] McVeigh or [Terry] Nichols but it began to change my life.”

Kathy Sanders found forgiveness in an unexpected way.

mlebear.com

The opening track to Emily Bear’s latest release, “Into the Blue” earned her a Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composers Award, presented by the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers to honor talented young jazz artists during the earliest stages of their careers. 

Janette Beckman

Drummer Louis Hayes will celebrate his 80th birthday at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola later this month.  It’s also a CD-release party for his solo debut on Blue Note Records, Serenade for Horace.

Hayes was 20 when he recorded his first drum tracks for Blue Note — on 6 Pieces of Silver, by the Horace Silver Quintet. He had been behind the kit with the band for some time when the record hit stores.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The annual Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival brings the best high school jazz ensembles nationwide to New York City, where they compete live from Jazz at Lincoln Center.  They kicked things off this year with a message, New Orleans Style.

Jazz at Lincoln Center kicks off the Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival with a statement on the importance of funding the arts.  They have fifteen of America’s most talented high school jazz ensembles by their side to help.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The 115th Street library in Harlem is being named after singer and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte.

“I grew up in this very space.  I lived on 114th Street and Manhattan Avenue.  I used to go to Manhattan Park to hang out and do mischief.  But this library and this community did a lot to shape my life,” Belafonte said.  “I’ve done a lot in my life, but this particular ceremony has deeper resonance and deeper meaning than I think many of you would realize.”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio made it official.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Over ten years ago, New Jersey became the first state to enact legislation requiring every new mother to be screened for postpartum depression and anxiety before leaving the hospital.  But only fifteen percent of women are reaching out for help after being discharged.

“The stigma, the shame, the failure you’re already feeling while in the throes of this illness prevents you from admitting and asking for help,” said Lisa Tremayne, Program Director at The Center for Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders at Monmouth Medical Center.

Wolfgang Almer / Late Blossom Blues

Bluesman Leo ‘Bud’ Welch and his manager Vencie Varnado make an unlikely duo from a small Mississippi town.

Albert Spevak / ambassadortv.com

‘I Was Saved by the Bell:  Stories of Life, Love, and Dreams That Do Come True’ is a new memoir from Peter Engel, a producer who suffered decades of missed opportunities.

“These stories kind of chronicle my journey of searching for a hit.”

He says some were small, some were downright ridiculous, some were humorous, and some were really big.

“The show that I really would have wanted to do was ‘Saturday Night with John Lennon’,” Engel said. “Everything was going fine and I got a call from John’s guy and he says John has a little change that he wants in the contract.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

Senator Cory Booker wants a commitment from the Trump Administration to support federal funding for improvements to railways between New York and New Jersey.  Funding for the Gateway Tunnel Project could be compromised under President Trump’s proposed federal budget.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The ‘Theater for Everyone’ program at the Paper Mill Playhouse allows students with developmental disabilities to explore their creativity.  To channel their inner actor.

“My students have all different abilities and disabilities, said Leslie Fannelli, ‘Theater for Everyone’ program instructor.  “We’re an intergenerational group because the families are always involved.  So we are age six through our sixties.  Everyone always participates.  Nobody sits on the sidelines.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

People were competing for video game supremacy by pumping quarters into arcades on boardwalks, laundromats, and their local VHS rental stores since the 1980’s.  And before that on a little old video game console called Atari.  But gamers making a real living playing them, that’s a different story.  Adam Fletcher is director of communications at The Coalition, the studio that develops content for the popular XBOX One title Gears of War 4.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Paul Henreid’s Victor Lazslo may be the most well liked foil in Hollywood history.  For Henreid’s daughter Monika, It’s the stubborn mindset of Bogey’s Rick Blaine that makes Laszlo the true hero of Casablanca.

abyssinian.org

Cyrus Chestnut wrote 'Saga of the Cross' only a few months back, a new composition to be performed with The Abyssinian Baptist Church Choir in Harlem.

“I teach at Howard University in Washington, DC of which there’s a great music program.  What stands out from the program is this vocal jazz group called ‘Afro Blue’ under the direction of Connaitre Miller.  So I’ve been hearing around the vocalists and hearing all of these vocal arrangements and all.  So it’s kind of gotten planted in the ear,” Chestnut said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

  

Knights of New Jersey explores four essential parts of the Renaissance Faire.  Honor, Courage, Loyalty, and Turkey Legs.  Lots of Turkey Legs.  It does so through the comedic life of fictional Renaissance Faire performers Sir Robert of Arden Dale and his mostly trusty squire Tom.  Director Michael Hadley says Knights of New Jersey started with a visit to Medieval Times in East Rutherford.

“I thought, what would it be like to have that as your day job?  To actually punch a clock, swing a sword, and that got me thinking about that lifestyle,” said Hadley.

Bethany Jacobson

If you’re into New York City settings, mixed with the happenings of a struggling uptown neurotic, bedded to an original jazz score, then Hotel Bleu is a short flick for you.  It’s film maker Bethany Jacobson’s first dive into a full on writer, producer, director role.

“New York can be so many things in cinema.  It’s a challenge to make it something that we haven’t seen before in terms of the feeling of it.  I think I wanted through these characters to show a little bit of the feeling of the old and the new mixed together,” Jacobson told WBGO.

Few Really Knew Ella Fitzgerald

Mar 30, 2017
Ang Santos / WBGO

You wouldn’t think a singer who was doing close to 300 shows a year at their peak would be nervous each time the curtains rose. Archivist Tad Hershorn with The Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers-Newark says that was the case for Ella Fitzgerald.

“She was always nervous before she went on stage as we are about any type of life experience we might even have a certain handle on.  But when that music started, there she was, it was like watching your grandmother turn into Superwoman,” Hershorn said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

It’s been over two months since Cardinal Joseph Tobin arrived in Newark. 

“It’s been wonderful, it’s challenging, it’s a bit like drinking from the firehose every day, but I’m happy to be here,” Tobin told WBGO.

The former Archbishop of Indianapolis says he’s still adjusting to life in Newark.  He admits he’s yet to visit the great landmarks and eateries nearby, but he makes time for one of his favorite hobbies.

Ang Santos / WBGO

During a 1963 poetry reading, Gwendolyn Brooks acknowledges a lack of recognition for her large body of work.

“I guess I better offer you ‘We Real Cool’. Most young people know me only by that poem,” Brooks said.  “But I would prefer it if the textbook compilers and the anthologists would assume that I’d written a few other poems.”

Fast forward fifty plus years, Dr. Brenda Greene from The Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College says not much has changed.

Kenny Baron, Paquito D’ Rivera, and Jimmy Heath headline the upcoming 7th Annual James Moody Jazz Scholarship of New Jersey benefit.

The James Moody Scholarship of New Jersey was born in paying tribute to the jazz great.  The scholarship is given to a college bound high school senior based on their grades, musical talent, and willingness to contribute to their community.  Linda Moody says without the help of friends and musicians; the scholarship wouldn’t be possible.  Jazz House Kids Founder Melissa Walker is one of them.

By the time trumpeter Lee Morgan was eighteen years old, he was a fully established talent on the jazz scene.  Touring with the Dizzy Gillespie Big Band until they disbanded in 1958.  It didn’t take long for Lee Morgan to find more work, joining Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers.

“I had never heard anybody play trumpet like that before,” said Swedish filmmaker Kasper Collin about Lee Morgan in an interview with WBGO.

Collin previously made a film about saxophonist Albert Ayler, explaining it was a taxing project that took many years to finish.

The National Black Writers Conference / The Center for Black Literature

In 1950, Gwendolyn Brooks was the first African American to receive the Pulitzer Prize for her poetry collection ‘Annie Allen’.  This year’s National Black Writers Conference in New York aims to shed light on Brooks, whose work is much deeper than what’s found in your average poetry anthology. 

Rutgers-Newark / The Institute of Jazz Studies

Respected jazz world personalities will be in Newark to celebrate Ella’s life and work. Tad Hershorn with the Institute of Jazz Studies Rutgers-Newark says a number of guests worked with the First Lady of Song.

“One is Richard Lyons of New York.  He was a west coast player when he was her musical director for three months in 1956.  Mike Wofford based in San Diego was her last accompanist for the remaining three years of her career,” said Hershorn.

Hershorn believes even the biggest fans will learn something new about her music.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Ella, Ella: A Centennial Celebration of Mama Jazz the latest installment of the Schomburg Center’s annual Women’s Month events.  Novella Ford is the manager of public programs at Schomburg.  She says it’s all about making sure that people leave informed.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The city of Newark openly invites every resident to take a ten to fifteen-minute paper survey of questions addressing their thoughts on Newark-police community relationships, based on personal experiences.  The site in central ward felt sort of like a school testing area, but the participants didn’t fill out their questionnaires in silence.  Many were openly voicing their support for the federal monitor over the Newark Police Department.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The former Port Authority Chairman who pled guilty to using his position to coerce a United Airlines flight to his vacation home in South Carolina was sentenced in federal court. 

David Samson was sentenced to a year of home confinement, 4 years of probation, community service, and a $100,000 fine.

Ang Santos / WBGO

An influential music venue set to close in New York City is moving to a revamped performance space at the New School’s College of Performing Arts.

The Stone was founded by multi-instrumentalist composer John Zorn, an experimental music extraordinaire who’s saxophone stylings have graced the stage alongside thousands of musicians over the last twelve years.  He opened the East Village hub so musicians wouldn’t need to depend on venue income to get booked.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey state and federal elected officials were at a Jewish Community Center in Tenafly to condemn the recent string of antisemitic acts across the country.

Governor Chris Christie says New Jersey law enforcement is aggressively perusing a recent spike in bias crimes.

“We now have $10,000 rewards available for any leads that lead us to the violation of bias crimes.  And anyone in this state who commits that type of crime will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and sent to prison,” Christie said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is laying out a new strategy to reduce homelessness across the five boroughs.  He says the city will stop using private apartments, known as cluster sites, and commercial hotels to house the homeless.  He says they’ll build new or expand on existing shelters.

“Ninety new shelters will be necessary.  We think it’s more than a fair trade off to build new and better facilities, cleaner, safer facilities.  The overall number of buildings that are addressing the homeless crisis will be reduced by forty-five percent,” de Blasio said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

There wasn’t much love for President Donald Trump from the hundreds of people who came to Republican Congressman Leonard Lance’s town hall meeting at Raritan Valley Community College.  A little ironic considering Trump’s Bedminster golf course sits only a few miles away.

“We actually have gone to his office his office to demand a town hall meeting, and it was kind of nice because a couple of days later there’s a town hall meeting.  I like to feel that we had something to do with it but I don’t think so,” said Michelle de Mico, a constituent of Lance’s.

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