Speak No Evil Jazz blog

Capital Public Radio's discussion of an art form born in America and celebrated worldwide.


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Highlights Worth Hearing From The Excellence In Jazz Archives

At CapRadio we appreciate and celebrate jazz every day. But with the extra attention drawn to this great music through Jazz Appreciation Month (April) and International Jazz Day (April 30), we thought now would be a great time to revisit some special stories and interviews we've done over the years. As the calendar turns to May we hope you enjoy these timeless excerpts and share this page with your fellow jazz lovers.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP

Jimmy Smith on Jimmy Smith

The legendary jazz organist was living in Sacramento in the mid 1990’s. During a visit to the station, Jimmy told CapRadio’s Gary Vercelli the story of how he was discovered by Blue Note Records’ founder Alfred Lion. Then Gary got Jimmy to break down his singular approach to the Hammond B-3 organ.
Kiem Nguyen

Henry Robinett on Charles Mingus

In 2016, Gary Vercelli sat down with the acclaimed, Sacramento-based guitarist Henry Robinett, whose father was a first cousin to the great jazz bassist and composer, Charles Mingus. That relationship had a profound impact on Henry’s own musical journey, as we hear in this excerpt from Gary’s interview.

Desmond and Brubeck Talk "Take Five"

In the late 1990's CapRadio’s Paul Conley produced a documentary on saxophonist Paul Desmond, who is credited with composing one of the most famous jazz tunes of all time, "Take Five," as a member of the Dave Brubeck Quartet in the late 1950s.  As part of the documentary, Conley interviewed Brubeck. Here is an excerpt from that interview, along with an archived CBC interview with Desmond from the 1970s, as both men tell the story behind the making of "Take Five."

Listen to the one-hour documentary on Paul Desmond produced by Paul Conley for NPR's Jazz Profiles series, narrated by Nancy Wilson.

Paul Conley

Joey Alexander Shares Joy For Jazz With Peers

This May, young piano sensation and multiple Grammy Award nominee Joey Alexander will release his latest CD “Eclipse,” which you’ll be hearing a lot of here on CapRadio. Back in 2016, Joey performed in Sacramento for an audience of his peers at Arden Middle School. He also talked with Paul Conley.


Listen to the full story

Paul Conley

Delfeayo Marsalis' Ear Training Project

In 2010, trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis came to town to work on a novel project he created for local high school jazz ensembles. He  sent them a CD by jazz great Johnny Hodges to listen to in advance of his visit. Paul Conley talked with Marsalis, along with a student musician and a music teacher to learn more about the project.  Conley also recorded Marsalis working with various student ensembles at the Mondavi Center, which sponsored the residency program.

 Listen to the full story here

Paul Conley

High School Allstars Open For SF Jazz Collective

In this story from 2012, Sacramento saxophonist and educator Mike McMullen talks about the high school ensemble he coached in advance of their appearance at the Mondavi Center. These talented musicians from various area high schools were set to open for the critically-acclaimed SF Jazz Collective, whose challenging music they would perform. The students could have been intimidated.  McMullen explained to Paul Conley why they weren't.

 Listen to the full story here

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