Jazz Appreciation Month

Isaiah McClain / WBGO

The jazz program at William Paterson University has been helmed by Bill Charlap since 2015. 

Isaiah McClain / WBGO

Acclaimed vibraphonist Stefon Harris leads the Jazz Arts Department at the Manhattan School of Music. The school features an array of ensembles and combos, and Stefon brought one to perform for us live in the WBGO studio for Jazz Appreciation Month.

Group members are Savannah Harris (drums), Hwansu Kang (bass), Brandon Woody (trumpet), Abdulrahman Amer (trombone), and Matthew Malanowski (piano), who take turns composing the music they perform.

Courtesy of the artist

Montreal is home to the largest jazz festival in the world, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. So it’s no surprise that the city is also the home to one of the most prestigious music schools in Canada, The Schulich School of Music of McGill University. Pianist Jean-Michel Pilc is Associate Professor and Jazz Area Chair at McGill.

Under the direction of trombone masters Ed Neumeister and Conrad Herwig, the Rutgers University Scarlet Knights Trombone Ensemble was named winner of the 2018 Winding Awards at the Kai Winding Jazz Trombone Ensemble Competition, organized by the International Trombone Association.

The Plummer Jazz Combos, named in honor of Indiana saxophonist Paul Plummer, features students from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. Led by the renowned saxophonist and IU Jazz faculty member Walter Smith III, the groups perform original music composed by each member of the band, and fresh interpretations of standards and songs by modern composers.

The Juilliard Jazz Max Roach Ensemble

The Juilliard Jazz Max Roach Ensemble is one of four student groups at the Juilliard School, and excels under the direction of drummer Ulysses Owens, Jr.

Owens, an alumnus of Juilliard's inaugural jazz program, is also known for his stellar work with Christian McBride and Kurt Elling, among others. 

Courtesy of the artist

Helmed by  Neal Smith, a drummer, professor and ensemble coach at the Berklee College of Music, The Neal Smith Jazz Ensemble is a handpicked ensemble featuring some of the top players from the school, all of whom separately play around the Boston area.

Isaiah McClain

In 2001, The National Museum of American History designated April "Jazz Appreciation Month" (JAM).

Of course, jazz appreciation is a year-round pursuit for WBGO and our listeners — but we'll acknowledge the nationwide JAM celebration this month with a focus on the emerging generation of jazz artists. Tune in each weekday to hear an array of student musicians from across America and around the world. 

NYU WAYNE SHORTER JAZZ ENSEMBLE

Manhattan School of Music is home to undergraduate and graduate degree programs in jazz, developed under the leadership of jazz artist and educator Justin DiCioccio.  For Jazz Appreciation Month, we have three of the school's jazz ensembles: MSM Jazz Orchestra, MSM Mingus Ensemble, and MSM Jazz Arts Vocal Big Band.

Hear Four Ensembles From The Famed University of North Texas Jazz Program

Apr 25, 2017

The University of North Texas College of Music has a rich jazz history. In 1947, it became the the first university in the world to offer a degree program in jazz. Today, the UNT jazz program, housed within America's largest music school, has spawned the careers of numerous Grammy-winning artists, including Norah Jones and Snarky Puppy's Michael League.

New York University’s Jazz Studies program is located in the heart of Greenwich Village, hallowed ground for generations of jazz artists and fans alike. To celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month, assistant professor and saxophonist Dave Pietro introduces us to the NYU Wayne Shorter Ensemble, which explores the compositions of NYU alumnus and Newark native Wayne Shorter.

The Royal Academy of Music is Britain's oldest degree-granting music school. Since its establishment in 1822, the conservatory has produced a lengthy roster of versatile and creative luminaries; Sir John Dankworth, Joe Jackson, Sir Elton John and Annie Lennox are RAM alumni.

The School of Jazz at The New School in New York City is known for nurturing young and gifted improvisers. Such is the case with The Blake Opper New School Jazz Quartet, which sports an unusual configuration: two saxophonists, a bassist, and a drummer. The musicians, all in their junior year at The New School, performed four original compositions by saxophonist Blake Opper.

William Paterson University has 24 jazz ensembles. Bill Charlap, the renowned pianist who serves as the school's Director of Jazz Studies, brought one of them to perform in our studio for Jazz Appreciation Month.

Montreal is home to the largest jazz festival in the world, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. So it’s no surprise that the city is also the home to one of the most prestigious music schools in Canada, The Schulich School of Music of McGill University. Pianist Jean-Michel Pilc is Associate Professor and Jazz Area Chair at McGill.

Celebrating Jazz Appreciation Month with WBGO !

Pianist and head of Jazz Studies at Purchase College’s Conservatory of Music, Peter Malinverni handpicked the university's Ahmad Jamal Tribute Septet for a performance in our studio. The ensemble features freshmen and grad students interpreting music recorded by pianist Ahmad Jamal.