PRX - Pieces for Tone: Engaging

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Caption: J.C. Higginbotham
Pianist and bandleader Luis Russell happened to have one of the best bands in the Big Apple by the latter 1920s.

Bought by KCBX


  • Added: Feb 06, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
  • Purchases: 1
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January 1953 was a busy month for recording in Chicago, involving sessions, this week, with Little Walter, “Honeyboy” Edwards, Muddy Waters, and J....

  • Added: Jul 14, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time we profile Ruth Brown, one of the biggest R&B singers of the 1950s, who first hit the top of the Billboard charts, this week in 1950.

  • Added: Apr 23, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time we profile The Howlin’ Wolf, who made his debut on the Billboard R&B charts in 1951.

  • Added: Apr 17, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time we profile Sister Rosetta Tharpe, who first recorded with an electric guitar, this week in 1941.

  • Added: Apr 15, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time we profile Professor Longhair, who first recorded a beloved Mardi Gras classic, this week in 1949.

  • Added: Apr 14, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time, we profile Henry Thomas, whose two dozen recordings for Vocalion, made in the late 1920s, hark back to a time before the blues.

  • Added: Apr 10, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time, we profile harmonica ace Junior Wells — who was in the studio laying down some classic tracks for Delmark Records, this week in 1965.

  • Added: Apr 08, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time, we profile Little Richard and Specialty Records owner Art Rupe, who, at first anyway, wasn’t too impressed by Little Richard.

  • Added: Apr 06, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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This time, we profile blues piano mystery man, Black Bob — who was in the studio this week with Memphis Minnie, in 1935.

  • Added: Apr 02, 2018
  • Length: 03:29
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In this hour, we’ll explore the music of two more giants of the New Orleans diaspora, pianist and composer Jelly Roll Morton, who left Louisiana in...

Bought by Spokane Public Radio, KRPS, KENW, KMUW, KMUN and more


  • Added: Mar 10, 2017
  • Length: 58:57
  • Purchases: 11
Caption: Duke Ellington
In the 1920s, Ellington performed in nightclubs as the bandleader of a sextet, a group that in time grew to a 10-piece ensemble. The nucleus of thi...

Bought by KCBX


  • Added: Oct 12, 2013
  • Length: 58:57
  • Purchases: 1
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Afrika Bambaataa's vinyl archive was on display for one month in New York City.

Bought by KALW and PRX Remix


  • Added: Aug 22, 2013
  • Length: 12:04
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: sheet music cover
As New Orleans musicians began to migrate north following the closure of Storyville (the red light district near the navy base), it was only natura...

Bought by Radio New Zealand and KCBX


  • Added: Jun 04, 2013
  • Length: 58:58
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Towns in the southern colonies had many residents who were slaves or free blacks., Credit: Colonial Williamsburg Foundation
Steven Spielberg’s recent film Lincoln stirred up a lot of talk about what history sounded like. Spielberg even recorded one of President Lincoln’s...

Bought by KENW and Radio Newark


  • Added: Mar 22, 2013
  • Length: 02:30
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Young Eubie Blake
The music of american legend James Hubert "Eubie" Blake. Pianist, composer, vocalist, and a man who could reinvent himself as times demanded.

Bought by KCBX and KCBX


  • Added: Feb 13, 2013
  • Length: 58:56
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Cladys "Jabbo" Smith
Cladys "Jabbo" Smith is one of the finest exponents of early jazz trumpet, yet he is overshadowed by Louis Armstrong, Bix Beiderbecke, and many oth...

Bought by WNCU and KCBX


  • Added: Jan 18, 2013
  • Length: 58:56
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: William Pope.L, Blink New Orleans, 2012, Credit: Cathy Byrd
William Pope.L, an American performance artist and interventionist, talks about Blink, his magic lantern show for Prospect.2 New Orleans, 2011.

Bought by KUT


  • Added: Jan 07, 2013
  • Length: 06:30
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Josephine Baker
Sidney Bechet and Josephine Baker were the most recognizable expatriates on the Parisian seen in the 1920s. If you've seen the movie "Midnight in P...

  • Added: Feb 02, 2012
  • Length: 58:59