Airs Thursday, April 4 at 8 p.m. Duke Ellington is widely regarded as one of the most important composers in the history of music and his orchestra of the mid 1930's was at the beginning of its creative peak, featuring some of the finest jazz soloists in the history of the music. During the years of 1936 - 40 a series of small group sessions led by Ellington with his key sidemen, were recorded for a variety of different labels and they have all stood the test of time.
Airs Thursday, March 28 at 8 p.m. The forward movement of contemporary American stringband music has always been fueled by a tradition that existed outside the classroom setting. When a young person attempts to pursue an American style such as bluegrass, Cajun, country or blues, the earliest method of learning often begins with imitating music from recordings. Later on, participation in jam sessions, lessons with a mentor, and getting connected with better players is the easiest route toward figuring out how to play your instrument. In this episode we listen to a group of mostly non-formally trained string players that has developed a wholly original sound based on their collective approach to music making.
Airs Thursday, March 21 at 8 p.m. In music, the term "Americana" generally refers to a subset of American music that is perhaps best defined as "classic" American music, ranging in style from roots-based bluegrass to alternative country, gospel, blues, zydeco, jazz and other native forms. In this episode, we listen to an array of musical Americana selections recorded at the Savannah Music Festival between 2004 and 2008. Performers include Sam Bush, Mike Marshall, Don Stiernberg, the David Grisman Quintet, Jerry Douglas, Bob Seeley, the Bucky Pizzarelli Trio, Daniel Hope, Tony Williamson and Sebastian Knauer.
Airs Thursday, March 14 at 8:00 p.m. Innovators in acoustic music from America and Sweden come together to explore the commonalities between Swedish polskas and Appalachian fiddle tunes. Recorded live at the Charles H. Morris Center during the Savannah Music Festival.
The country of Sweden has a folk music tradition that goes back at least 700 years. Importantly, this tradition still serves as the impetus for songs being created today. One of the most original Swedish groups to emerge in the late 20th century is a trio known as Väsen, whose creative output has shown that Swedish traditional music is still alive and well in our time. During this episode, we listen to Väsen as they combine forces with two of American music's finest improvisational players, Mike Marshall and Darol Anger, in a performance the group gave at the Savannah Music Festival. Each of the five players brings his own personality to the table and the sum of the parts is one that takes instrumental music in new, innovative directions.
Airs Thursday, February 21 at 8:00 p.m. When the discussion of contemporary American acoustic music arises, several different genres come to mind. If the ingredients of the genre include well-crafted songs, vivid arrangements, instrumental virtuosity, splendid improvisation, complete vocal harmony, as well as a mandolin, a banjo, and a dobro, well, the window gets narrowed down. One group that embodies all of these traits is The Infamous Stringdusters. Listen to the talented young newgrass ensemble The Infamous Stringdusters on this episode of SMF Live, featuring selections culled from their two shows at the Savannah Music Festival in Charles H. Morris Center.