Night Train

Monday - Thursday at 10pm

Monday through Thursday nights, it’s the best in jazz on Night Train, hosted by KMUW’s Chris Heim. From classic artists and recordings to today’s emerging artists and most intriguing new releases - along with specials, in-depth features, jazz concert highlights and more - Night Train will take you to the best of “America’s classical music.”

Listen to recent Night Train shows:

Archive is updated between midnight and 3am after the show airs.

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Monday 5.7.18

Night Train remembers alto saxophonist Arthur Blythe on his birthday. For the May Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month feature, there’s music from Indian percussionist Ramesh Shotham for his birthday, and from critically acclaimed pianist, composer, and educator Vijay Iyer, including a special with him in hour two of the show. And Night Train also highlights new music from the Barrett Martin Group, drummer Peter Erskine and his Dr. Um Band, and Latin jazz percussions Steven Kroon.

Tuesday 5.8.18

Night Train marks birthdays of two great jazz pianists tonight – Mary Lou Williams and Keith Jarrett. We’ll hear music from Jarrett’s new album with the Standards Trio in hour one and a special with him in hour two of the show.  There’s also new music from pianist Emmet Cohen with legendary bassist Ron Carter, pianist Chick Corea with drummer Steve Gadd, and the Peter Sommer Septet.

Wednesday 5.9.18

Night Train marks birthdays of Brazilian pianist, singer and composer Tania Maria, and of guitarist Anthony Wilson (featured with Diana Krall and the Gerald Wilson Orchestra, along with his own groups). Plus new swing-inspired releases from Squirrel Nut Zippers, Hot Club Sandwich, Kevin Connor & Swing 3PO, and the Idiomatiques – and Don Braden’s new tribute to Earth Wind & Fire and Stevie Wonder.

Thursday 5.10.18

Music of Duke Ellington & Billy Strayhorn tonight on the Night Train, as performed by guitarist Kenny Burrell, John Coltrane with Johnny Hartman, Red Mitchell with Roger Kellaway, Red Garland, Oscar Peterson, the Jeff Hamilton Trio, Benny Golson, Sarah King & the Smoke Rings, Allen Toussaint, Dan Cray and Lafayette Harris, Jr.

Album cover art

  1. Van Morrison/Joey DeFrancesco – You’re Driving Me Crazy (Sony Legacy)
  1. Kurt Elling – The Questions (Okeh)
  1. Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock, Jack DeJohnette – After the Fall (ECM)
  1. Pat Martino – Formidable (High Note)
  1. Edward Simon – Sorrows and Triumphs (Sunnyside)
  1. Leslie Pintchik – You Eat My Food…(Pintch Hard)
  1. George Kahn – Straight Ahead (Playing Records)
  1. George Cotsirilos Quartet – Mostly in Blue (OA2)
  1. Alfredo Rodriguez – The Little Dream (Mack Avenue)
  1. Michel Camilo – Live in London (Redondo Music)

Monday 4.30.18

Night Train marks the birthday of bassist and Modern Jazz Quartet member Percy Heath (including a special featuring music of MJQ in hour two), wraps up Guitar Month with music from Wes Montgomery with Percy Heath as part of the band, and begins a week long remembrance of pianist, vocalist and songwriter Bob Dorough who passed away last week.

Tuesday 5.1.18

Night Train kicks off the May Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month feature with a celebration on an annual holiday to honor traditional Hawaiian culture – May Day is Lei Day in Hawaii (also celebrated this evening with a program devoted to Hawaiian music on Global Village). We’ll hear the Honolulu Jazz Quartet, an early pioneer of the Hawaiian steel guitar, and a special in hour two following the history of that instrument as it first entered American popular music. Night Train also continues its week-long tribute to Bob Dorough with music from his major label debut (when he was in his 70s) and as a guest with Joanie Pallatto doing one of his classic songs – and there’s music from Shirley Horn and Big Maybelle for their birthdays.

Wednesday 5.2.18

Night Train continues its week-long salute to pianist, singer and songwriter Bob Dorough with music from his debut album and a cover of one of his songs by pianist Hank Jones. We also mark birthdays of two songwriters, J. Fred Coots, and also Lorenz Hart, including a special in hour two tracing the early career and classic songs of Rodgers & Hart. There’s new music from pianist Renee Rosnes and singer Shirley Crabbe, and for the May Asian American Heritage Month feature, music from pianist and composter Aki Takase.

Thursday 5.3.18

Night Train wraps up a week-long tribute to Bob Dorough with a classic song he wrote with Dave Frishberg, music from his live set at the iridium, and a cover of one of his classics by Irene Kral. We also mark birthdays of flutist Andrea Brachfeld, songwriter Betty Comden, guitarist Hristo Vitchev, and pianist, composer and Modern Jazz Quartet co-founder John Lewis, including an MJQ special in hour two.

Monday 4.23.18

Night Train kicks off a week’s preview of the artists appearing at this year’s International Day Jazz concert on April 30th, including this night music from Till Bronner and Gilad Hekselman. Plus new music from pianist Edward Simon, a live four-disc set from the final Miles Davis/John Coltrane tour, the Oak Trio, and guitarist Wali Ali; music from Duke Ellington’s Such Sweet Thunder suite for Shakespeare’s birthday; and in hour two, for our April Guitar Month feature, a special examining One Hundred Years of Jazz Guitar.

Tuesday 4.24.18

It’s Chicago tenor night on the Night Train in honor of the birthday of Johnny Griffin. We’ll hear music – and a special in hour two – featuring such great Chicago tenor players as Gene Ammons, Clifford Jordan, John Gilmore (from the Sun Ra Arkestra) and Von Freeman. And, as we feature music all week from artists appearing at this year’s International Jazz Day concert, there’s music from Kurt Elling and Joey DeFrancesco.

Wednesday 4.25.18

Night Train celebrates birthdays of drummer Carl Allen, soul jazz saxophonist Willis Jackson, and the legendary Ella Fitzgerald (including a Jazz Profiles special about her in hour two of the show). Plus more music from artists performing at this year’s International Jazz Day concert April 30th, including Kurt Elling and Manhattan Transfer – both with new albums out; and more guitars for the April Guitar Month feature, including John Scofield and a new duo set from Royce Campbell with bassist Bob Bowen.

Thursday 4.26.18

As part of the April Guitar Month feature, Night Train highlights some acoustic guitar recordings, including a rare set from John Scofield, John Pisano with Gene Bertoncini, gypsy jazz guitarists Stephane Wrembel, Romane, Stochelo Rosenberg, and Martin Taylor, Ralph Towner, and John Pizzarelli.  Plus new music from alto saxophonist Sherman Irby, the New Faces lineup, Van Morrison with Joey DeFrancesco, Leslie Pintchik, Lewis Porter, Michel Camilo, and George Kahn.

Monday 4.16.18

Night Train marks birthdays of guitarist Ulf Wakenius, flutist Herbie Mann and composer Henry Mancini, and features new music from the Brubeck Brothers Quartet (celebrating the 60th anniversary of Dave Brubeck’s groundbreaking State Department Tour), guitarist Jacques Lesure, and soul jazz duo Mike Clark and Delbert Bump. Then in hour two, for the April Guitar Month feature, a special performance from guitarist Larry Coryell with Mark Egan and Paul Wertico.

Tuesday 4.17.18

Great guitars (for the April International Guitar Month feature) and tribute albums are the focus tonight on the Night Train, with music from guitarists Pat Metheny, John Scofield, Wes Montgomery, Eric Clapton (with Wynton Marsalis), Russell Malone, Pat Martino, and the Deep Blue Organ Trio featuring guitarist Bobby Broom. Tribute albums on tap include Swingadelic’s salute to Duke Pearson, Dee Dee Bridgewater’s tribute to Billie Holiday, Bill Frisell’s collection of songs from John Lennon, Alan Pasqua doing music of Bill Evans, and Conrad Herwig showcasing the “Latin Side of Herbie Hancock.”

Wednesday 4.18.18

While KMUW’s music shows have been celebrating Guitar Month, April is also Poetry Month and tonight Night Train marks the occasion with music from jazz artists inspired by such great poets as T.S. Eliott, Emily Dickenson, Elizabeth Bishop, Carl Sandburg, ee cummings, and more. We’ll hear performances from Matt Wilson, Patricia Barber, June Christy, Kurt Elling, Langston Hughes, Gil Scott-Heron and Tin Hat, among others. It’s also the birthday of singer and songwriter Madeleine Peyroux and in the first hour we’ll hear her do a piece inspired by a W.H. Auden poem and then in hour two, she’s the special guest in a Song Travels special.

Thursday 4.19.18

In conjunction with the April Guitar Month feature, Night Train features some great guitarists, classic and contemporary, tonight. Among the artists featured are Pat Metheny, Pat Martino, Kenny Burrell, John Abercrombie, Al DiMeola, Steve Khan, and Larry Coryell with John Scofield and Joe Beck. Plus the latest from bassist Kyle Eastwood, saxophonist Steve Slagle, organist Dr. Lonnie Smith, and singer Kate McGarry.

Archives of Rocket and Space Corporation Energia


KMUW Music is celebrating International Day of Human Space Flight, marking the first human flight in outer space by Yuri Gagarin in 1961. Tune in to Global Village, Strange Currency and Night Train from 7:00 p.m. to midnight on Thursday, April 12 for five hours of space-inspired music.

Monday 4.9.18

Night Train marks two birthdays tonight: veteran drummer Steve Gadd (with music with his own band, including a new self-titled set just out from the group, and with Chick Corea on a new release and from the classic My Spanish Heart album) and soul jazz organist Reuben Wilson (from his own albums and with the Masters and Godfathers of Groove). Also more great guitars for the April feature, including Kenny Burrell, Pat Martino, Steve Khan, and Ed Cherry – and new music from B3B4, Edward Simon, Alfredo Rodriguez, and the Unhinged Sextet.

Tuesday 4.10.18

Night Train marks a number of birthdays tonight, including guitarist George Freeman, pianists Denny Zeitlin and Omar Sosa, third stream pianist and composer Claude Bolling, and organist Joey DeFrancesco (including a preview of his new album with Van Morrison out later this month and a special concert performance from the Newport Jazz Festival in hour two of the show.) Plus music from the Reunion Project with guitarist Chico Pinheiro, the next artist featured on the special series Global Village at the Savannah Music Festival on April 30th.

Wednesday 4.11.18

Throughout April, Night Train celebrates International Guitar Month with music from jazz giants and rising stars. Featured tonight are contemporary players Pat Metheny, Larry Coryell, and Hristo Vitchev, classic tracks from guitar legends Jim Hall and Herb Ellis (from an album he did in tribute to jazz guitar pioneer Charlie Christian), Project G-7 celebrating the legacy of Wes Montgomery, and the group Trio da Paz with Brazilian guitar master Romero Lubambo.

Thursday 4.12.18

Night Train joins in with Global Village and Strange Currency to celebrate Day of Human Space Flight, marking the first human flight in outer space by Yuri Gagarin in 1961. We’ll hear space inspired music from Joshua Breakstone, Diana Krall, Tito Puente and, of course, Sun Ra. It’s also Herbie Hancock’s birthday and we’ll hear some space-related music from him in hour one and feature a special focused on his breakthrough work in the 1960s in hour two of the show.

Album cover art

  1. Dr. Lonnie Smith – All in My Mind (Blue Note)


  1. Alfredo Rodriguez – The Little Dream (Mack Avenue)
  1. Hristo Vitchev Quartet – Of Light and Shadows (First Orbit Sounds)
  1. Leslie Pintchik – You Eat My Food…(Pintch Hard)
  1. Pat Martino – Formidable (High Note)
  1. Chick Corea + Steve Gadd Band – Chinese Butterfly (Stretch/Concord)
  1. Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock, Jack DeJohnette – After the Fall (ECM)
  1. Peter Sommer Septet – Happy-Go-Lucky Locals (Peter Sommer Music)
  1. George Kahn – Straight Ahead (Playing Records)
  1. Ben Paterson – That Old Feeling (Cellar Live)

Monday 3.26.18

Night Train marks birthdays of pianists Hiromi (including music from a duet set she did with Chick Corea) and Chad Lawson, and saxophonist James Moody (featured in a Jazz Profiles special in hour two of the show). Plus more for the Women’s History Month feature including music from a new Nina Simone compilation, Billie Holiday and an Abbey Lincoln tribute to Billie.

Tuesday 3.27.18

Music from singers Sarah Vaughan and Stacey Kent for their birthdays, including a Sarah Vaughn Jazz Profiles special in hour two of the show – also new music from drummer Akira Tana, pianist George Kahn, the Diva Jazz Orchestra’s 25th Anniversary Project, and the ‘Standards Trio’ of Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette.

Wednesday 3.28.18

Tonight’s Night Train focuses on soul jazz – the lively style inspired by soul and R&B that often brought together electric guitar, organ and saxophone. Among the highlights: the Jazz Soul Seven’s tribute to Curtis Mayfield; guitarist George Benson with both Jack McDuff, and the duo of Hank Crawford and Jimmy McGriff;  guitarist Dave Styker’s album in tribute to soul jazz great (and his former employer) Stanley Turrentine;  and Stanley Turrentine himself with his classic version of Marvin Gaye’s “Don’t Mess with Mr. T.” And a few more artists for the March Women’s History Month feature – including singer Nnenna Freelon and cellist Akua Dixon.

Thursday 3.29.18

A busy night tonight on the Night Train as the show wraps up the March Women’s History Month feature (with music from Eliane Elias, Berta Rojas, Anat Cohen, Katie Thiroux and Mariam McPartland), marks the birthday of saxophonist Michael Brecker, and highlights music from an extensive list of performers with local and regional concerts in the coming week, including artists appearing at this year’s Wichita Jazz Festival and the Hesston-Bethel Performing Arts Series.  Plus new music from Manhattan Transfer, the Chick Corea+Steve Gadd Band, Bill Frisell, and the Jambalaya Brass Band.

Monday 3.19.18

Night Train kicks off IMA Week, featuring music from nominees in this year’s Independent Music Awards, honoring small label and artist-released music in 96 categories. Night Train highlights jazz nominees tonight, while Global Village and Crossroads will feature some of the world and blues nominees later in the week.
Also tonight birthday celebrations for Brazilian pianist, singer and composer Eliane Elias, pianist and former musical director for Dizzy Gillespie – Mike Longo, and singer Bill Henderson. Plus new music from Cuban pianist Alfredo Rodriguez, vibes player Steve Hobbs, gypsy jazz guitarist Stephane Wrembel, and soul jazz group Organissimo.

Tuesday 3.20.18

Night Train marks the centennial birthday of pianist, composer, author, pioneering jazz educator and label owner, and long-time host of the groundbreaking Piano Jazz radio show, Marian McPartland. We’ll hear music from throughout her career, hear from McPartland herself from a National Endowment for the Arts interview after she was named an NEA Jazz Master, and in hour two hear a special memorial program featuring her compositions performed by such artists as Sarah Vaughan, Elvis Costello, Bill Charlap, Karrin Allyson and more.

It’s also the first day of spring, and Night Train joins in with Global Village and Strange Currency to feature some songs for the new season, including from pianist, composer and vocalist Meredith D’Ambrosio, who was also born on this date and who regularly included spring songs on her albums.

Wednesday 3.21.18

Jazz has become an international language and Night Train offers some proof tonight from jazz pianists from around the world – including Italy’s Stefano Bollani, Brazil’s Antonio Adolfo, the Dominican Republic’s Michel Camilo, Germany’s Florian Hoefner, and Turkey’s Fahir Atakoglu.

Night also continues its Women’s History Month celebrations with Japanese pianist Hiromi, singers Dee Alexander and Molly Johnson, and drummer Allison Miller.

Thursday 3.22.18

Night Train marks birthdays of guitarists George Benson (including a special focusing on his early jazz career in hour two of the show) and Melvin Sparks, highlights new music from organist Robert Kennedy and guitarists Pat Martino and Hristo Vitchev, and as the Women’s History Month feature continues, there’s music from innovative German organist Barbara Dennerlein.