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About this Episode

Birthed between bourbon and beignets, jazz is, as Nina Simone once said, classical music. An art formed from sporadic instrumentation, bodies moving freely, and soul. It is the mother of pop, hip hop, funk, rhythm and blues, and more. As we bid farewell to National Jazz Month we celebrate it with the voices of the women who are preserving and shaping the music today. What does it take to archive America’s classical music and who are the unknown women who built it and will carry it forward?

In this Episode

Farrah Griffin

Chair of African-American & African Diaspora Studies; Director of the Institute for Research in African American Studies and the William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature and African-American Studies at Columbia University

I think that many Hip-Hop artists probably aren’t nominating themselves because they don’t think that the Pulitzer is going to recognize the artistry of what they do. That used to be the case with jazz, too.”

Melissa Weber

What should they be doing to preserve this history? The first step is to realize that it is history and not trash. So before you say you can throw this in the garbage can or, you know, stick it in the wet basement for a decade. Reconsider that.”

Laurin Talese

“I am so grateful to have found jazz at such an early age . . . as soon as I heard ‘Lullaby of Birdland,’ I was like, Oh, this feels like home.”

Keanna Faircloth

“Christie Dashiell . . . she’s absolutely incredible . . . [she’s] one of those people who I feel like is going to be a household name, but right now she’s just sort of bubbling beneath the surface . . . it’s only a matter of time.”

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