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Best Of 2015, National Bird Day & Jazz Birthdays

Monday 1.4.16

Night Train kicks off the January feature – highlighting the Best of 2015 – with music from flutist Andrea Brachfeld, Stanley Clark/Bireli Lagrene/Jean Luc Ponty, and from the Christian McBride Trio (a Night Train favorite and also a winner in the NPR Jazz Critics Poll, in which Night Train also participated – see the Best of the Year lists on our website for all the show favorites and a link to NPR Jazz Critics Poll).

Plus music from guitarist John McLaughlin and saxophonist and flutist Frank Wess for their birthdays.

Tuesday 1.5.16

Night Train celebrates National Bird Day with ‘birds’ (Charlie and Donald) and bird songs (from Abbey Lincoln, Bob Dorough, Cab Calloway, Louie Jordan and more). Plus a birthday salute to inventive contemporary Latin jazz trumpeter and percussionist Jerry Gonzalez – and there’s more of the Best of 2015, the January feature, including music from the Maria Schneider Orchestra (a release that topped both the Night Train list and the NPR Jazz Critics poll, in which Night Train participated), Steve Davis, and Mike LeDonne, and Grammy-nominated music from Bob James & Nathan East’s album, The New Cool.

(More about National Bird Day at nationalbirdday.com, and more about the project that inspired Maria Schneider’s “Arbiters of Evolution” at birdsofparadiseproject.org)

Wednesday 1.6.16

Tonight on the Night Train, it’s Blue Note Records hits (including selections from Lou Donaldson, Jimmy Smith and Stanley Jordan) and one-hit wonders (a couple of remarkable albums from jazz giants who only did one album for the label). Plus music from the Tord Gustavsen Quartet, Ian Hendricksen-Smith,  Curtis Stigers, and Craig Handy & 2nd Line Smith.

Thursday 1.7.16

Night Train highlights live recordings tonight – including performances from the Newport Jazz Festival from Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, and Lambert, Hendricks & Bavan. Also live performances from pianists Edward Simon, Ahmad Jamal, Gene Harris, and Elio Villafranca, saxophonist Elias Haslanger and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.

Chris Heim produces and hosts Global Village, a nationally and internationally distributed world music show; the nightly jazz show Night Train, and Crossroads, KMUW’s twice-weekly blues and R&B show. Chris is also a critic and freelance writer whose work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Utne, Global Rhythm, Dirty Linen, and Option, among others.