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Jazz and Blues Features

KNKX Public Radio

News about jazz, blues, Studio Sessions, and music samplings from jazz artists in the northwest and around the world.


Tacoma, WA


News about jazz, blues, Studio Sessions, and music samplings from jazz artists in the northwest and around the world.






12180 Park Ave S. Tacoma, WA 98447 253-535-7758


School of Jazz guest DJ for August: Dylan Hermansen

Tenor saxophonist Dylan Hermansen from South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia will join Abe Beeson as virtual guest DJ tonight (Aug. 5) on Evening Jazz at 7 p.m. For the past year, he has been recording albums in his home studio. In the future, he would like to form a jazz band.


Mixing jazz, hip-hop and beats proves therapeutic for Kassa Overall

Kassa Overall's music is the sound of a classical jazz musician raised by West Coast G Funk. He's not afraid to mix and match genres, like throwing autotuned raps on top of smooth-jazz trumpet.


School of Jazz guest DJ for July: Ryan Hsi

Pianist Ryan Hsi from Mercer Island High School in Seattle will join Abe Beeson as virtual guest DJ tonight (July 1) on Evening Jazz. He is in the school's jazz band and will start his junior year in the fall.


School of Jazz: Sam Llanillo serves as guest DJ

Tenor saxophonist Sam Llanillo from Ingraham High School in Seattle will join Abe Beeson as virtual guest DJ tonight (June 3) on Evening Jazz. He is a senior and in the school's jazz band. He has formed his own indie pop-rock band called Aurora Ave. Last month they participated in the Sound Off! showcase at MoPOP.


School of Jazz: Cade Sando serves as guest DJ

Saxophonist Cade Sando from Cascade Christian High School in Puyallup will join Abe Beeson as virtual guest DJ tonight (May 6) on Evening Jazz. He is a sophomore and in the school's jazz band. Cade plays alto and soprano saxophone, although he prefers soprano when it comes to jazz.


Jazz Appreciation Month: The Jazz List of Lists

Social media has given us innumerable lists of songs on all kinds of topics. "Best love song," "My favorite break-up songs"—you name it, there’s probably a song list for it. Today, Nick Morrison’s going to give you a list of songs about … well, we’ll let him tell you.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Drummer Terri Lyne Carrington searches for social justice

Jazz speaks to social issues, and drummer Terri Lyne Carrington’s focus on equality informs her work at the Berklee School of Music as well as her new album. Robin Lloyd reports for Jazz Appreciation Month.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Northwest Favorite Jazz Broadcaster Jim Wilke

He’s an Earshot Jazz Golden Ear Award Winner, broadcaster and originator of Jazz After Hours on public radio and champion of live jazz everywhere. For Jazz Appreciation Month, KNKX Music Director Carol Handley talked with Jim Wilke about his appreciation of the NW jazz scene and capturing it in live recordings.


Jazz Appreciation Month: 21st-Century Gypsies

The uplifting and swinging sound of gypsy jazz is no spring chicken. It’s pushing 90. So Nick Morrison decided to see how it was aging into the 21st century. Here’s his report.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Classical to Jazz

Classical music and jazz may seem to be worlds apart, but they have more in common than you might think. KNKX Music Director Carol Handley explores some favorite jazz/classical crossovers for Jazz Appreciation Month.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan make the most of live mistakes

Being on stage can be stressful. Even more so when singing for a live audience and you forget the words to the song. When you have the improvisation skills of Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan, though, you can turn lemons into lemonade.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Pianist Ahmad Jamal

His playing influenced Miles Davis and John Coltrane, and no – we’re not talking about a horn player. We’re talking about pianist Ahmad Jamal. Paige Hansen has more for our series during Jazz Appreciation Month.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Explore legendary live recordings from Cannonball Adderley and Ramsey Lewis

The important connection between musicians onstage and a crowded jazz club has been missing for more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many fans have been turning to live recordings that captured moments of magic, when the music onstage was matched by the energy in the crowd.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Celebrating the 2021 NEA Jazz Masters

Nationwide recognition for jazz artists is a rare thing. The National Endowment for the Arts stepped up its mandate in 1982 to include jazz as an art form and celebrate those who advance it. Robin Lloyd introduces the 2021 NEA Jazz Masters for Jazz Appreciation Month.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Jaco and Joni

Bassist Jaco Pastorius was a musical innovator, a celebrated master and an audacious free spirit, who proved an inspiring—and challenging—force to all who played music with him. KNKX’s Michael Stein tells us more.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Stride Piano

Historically speaking, jazz and blues met at the piano. For Jazz Appreciation Month, KNKX Music Director Carol Handley traces the development of the irresistible style called "stride" from its beginnings to the present day.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Texas Tenor Titans

During the 1940s Swing Era, certain big bands began to popularize a saxophone style that would become known as the "Texas Tenor" sound. Nick Morrison’s going to take us back to the beginning of that sound and follow its evolution from the big-band era to 1960s soul music.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Seattle's 2021 Jazz Hero

Jazz Appreciation Month brings recognition to the art form and to the artists who produce it. But did you know there are also awards for the behind-the-scenes supporters of jazz? Robin Lloyd has the scoop from jazz journalist Paul De Barros.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Pianist Bill Charlap

When you hear Bill Charlap on piano, you have the sense of someone lost – so lost in the music we may never be able to exist on that mountain with him. Paige Hansen has more on his exquisite playing in our series for Jazz Appreciation Month.


Jazz Appreciation Month: Defining a music genre that's always changing

Jazz is a music based on improvisation, and evolution. Moving through Dixieland, swing, bebop, free jazz, fusion and beyond can make describing what jazz is a difficult proposition. KNKX jazz host Abe Beeson spoke to three generations of musicians to find a definition.