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60 minutes | Feb 23, 2021
Jazz Beat 56 - Ricky Riccardi and Tom Reney, Part Three
In Part 3 of Tom Reney's interview with Ricky Riccardi, author of Heart Full of Rhythm: The Big Band Years of Louis Armstrong, they discuss Armstrong's tour of England in 1932, and his European sojourn in 1934-35; his top billing in the movie, Pennies From Heaven; his groundbreaking achievement as the first African American host of a network radio series; and the controversy over his 1938 recording, "When the Saints Go Marching In."
36 minutes | Jan 27, 2021
Jazz Beat 55 - Peter Guralnick Interview, Part Two
In part two of Tom Reney's interview with Peter Guralnick, they discuss three of the subjects of Guralnick's book, Looking to Get Lost: Adventures in Music and Writing: Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, and country music legend, Dick Curless, whose career began in the late 1940s in Ware, Massachusetts.
51 minutes | Jan 27, 2021
Jazz Beat 54 - Peter Guralnick
In 2015, Tom Reney spoke with Peter Guralnick about his biography, Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock & Roll . And now in a two-part Jazz Beat, he’s interviewed Peter about six of the American music legends who are profiled in Guralnick’s new book, Looking to Get Lost: Adventures In Music & Writing: Robert Johnson, Skip James, Johnny Cash, Howlin’ Wolf, Dick Curless and Ray Charles.
56 minutes | Nov 23, 2020
Jazz Beat 53 - Ricky Riccardi and Tom Reney, Part Two
In Part Two of Tom Reney's conversation with Ricky Riccardi about his new book, Heart Full of Rhythm: The Big Band Years of Louis Armstrong, Riccardi discusses Armstrong's skirmishes with Prohibition-era gangsters and managers; the trumpeter's triumphant return to his birthplace of New Orleans in 1931; and the massive archive of self-documentation in letters, scrapbooks, and tape recordings that Armstrong left for posterity.
56 minutes | Nov 2, 2020
Jazz Beat 52 - Ricky Riccardi and Tom Reney Discuss Louis Armstrong, Part One
Tom Reney spoke with Louis Armstrong biographer Ricky Riccardi about his new book, Heart Full of Rhythm, The Big Band Years of Louis Armstrong. In the first of a multi-part interview, they discuss Armstrong’s breakthrough in the early 1930s as a popular artist; his first recordings of Broadway show tunes; and the mixed response that Armstrong received during this period from critics in the U.S. and Europe.
57 minutes | Oct 2, 2020
Jazz Beat 51 - Interview with Joe Farnsworth
Tom Reney spoke with drummer Joe Farnsworth about his new album, TIME TO SWING. In his liner note essay for the album, veteran drummer Billy Hart describes Farnsworth as "one of the rhythm philosophers.” Listen here for the South Hadley, Massachusetts native discussing his experiences working with Junior Cook, Harold Mabern, Lou Donaldson, Cecil Payne, Eric Alexander and Wynton Marsalis.
40 minutes | Sep 3, 2020
Jazz Beat 50 – An Interview with Sonny Rollins
Tom Reney interviewed Sonny Rollins in August 2020 for a project honoring Yusef Lateef’s centennial. Sonny enjoyed a long friendship with Yusef, and he considers the late saxophonist a mentor and spiritual inspiration. The 90-year-old Saxophone Colossus also discusses his groundbreaking work of 1958, THE FREEDOM SUITE, and elaborates on interviews he’s recently given The New York Times and The New Yorker about living by the Golden Rule.
57 minutes | May 26, 2020
Jazz Beat 49 - An Interview with Paul Arslanian
Tom Reney spoke with Paul Arslanian on May 6 about his career in jazz. Paul is a veteran pianist who's been a highly visible figure in jazz in Western Massachusetts since 1984. In 2010, he was a co-founder of the Northampton Jazz Workshop, and since then, he's produced a series of weekly performances that feature a guest artist who plays with the Northampton-based Green Street Trio. Arslanian is the Trio's pianist, which also includes bassist George Kaye and drummer Jon Fisher.
38 minutes | Apr 17, 2020
JazzBeat 48 - Lee Konitz
Jazz a la Mode host Tom Reney interviewed Lee Konitz in 2004 before concerts he was playing in Northampton and Cambridge. Konitz died from Covid-19 related pneumonia on April 15 at age 92. He was still touring and recording until social distancing began in March. A major figure in his own right, the Chicago-born saxophonist was associated over the course of his 75-year-long career with the jazz greats Miles Davis, Lennie Tristano, Stan Kenton, Bill Evans, and Brad Mehldau.
48 minutes | Jan 15, 2020
Jazz Beat 47 - Champian Fulton
Champian Fulton was hailed by Francis Davis in the Village Voice in 2007, the year of her debut recording, as "the best new singer I've heard this year-- make that several years."
50 minutes | Oct 21, 2019
Jazz Beat 46 - Bennie Wallace
Tom Reney spoke with Bennie Wallace for Jazz Beat a few days before concerts that the veteran tenor saxophonist was scheduled to play in Connecticut in October 2019.
51 minutes | Aug 26, 2019
Jazz Beat 45 - Tom Reney on Open Source
Jazz Beat host Tom Reney appeared on Open Source with Christopher Lydon on WBUR. They discuss jazz and r&b and classical music and Tom Reney reveals eight essential recordings and one book that he would take to a desert island.
25 minutes | Dec 18, 2018
Jazz Beat 44 - T-Bone Walker
Jazz Beat 44 is devoted to Tom Reney's appreciation of the blues singer and guitarist T-Bone Walker.
33 minutes | Aug 21, 2018
Jazz Beat 43 - Aretha Franklin, 1942-2018, R.I.P
29 minutes | May 25, 2018
Jazz Beat 42 - Charles Neville
Tom Reney pays memorial tribute to Charles Neville on this edition of Jazz Beat.
60 minutes | Mar 16, 2018
Jazz Beat 41 - Anat Cohen
This edition of Jazz Beat features an interview that Tom Reney conducted with Anat Cohen in 2008 when she was the Billy Taylor Artist in Residence at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
22 minutes | Feb 2, 2018
Jazz Beat - Ruby Braff
In his latest edition of JazzBeat, NEPR’s Tom Reney turns the spotlight on Boston-born trumpeter Ruby Braff. Braff’s biography and his influences illuminate the period of jazz history that he inhabited. But the tone and style that you’ll hear in the episode’s music samples point to the timelessness of the music coming from his trumpet.
21 minutes | Jan 11, 2018
Jazz Beat - Max Roach
In the latest episode of Jazz Beat, Tom Reney celebrates the legacy of the jazz great Max Roach, and recalls the personal influence the drummer had on his life. Our podcast includes excerpts from Max's recordings with Clifford Brown, Sonny Rollins, Abbey Lincoln, and Stanley Turrentine, and selections from a solo concert by Max that Tom produced in 1979.
27 minutes | Nov 14, 2017
Jazz Beat - Fats Domino
Tom Reney's memorial tribute to Fats Domino credits the great pianist as a founder of rock 'n' roll and an exemplar of New Orleans rhythm and blues, and addresses a schism between jazz and r&b.
29 minutes | Oct 11, 2017
Jazz Beat – Randy Newman And Sonny Boy Williamson
Tom Reney looked into the legends of the two bluesmen known as Sonny Boy Williamson for this Jazz Beat podcast refuting some of what Randy Newman asserts in his new song, "Sonny Boy." Hear deep background on these blues greats, as well as Newman's tune, and blues classics by Sonny Boy I and II, and Billy Boy Arnold and Mose Allison.
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