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African American composers

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44:56

Stew: 'Making It' After A Tough Breakup

Stew's new album Making It is, in part, about his relationship with his ex-girlfriend and songwriting partner, Heidi Rodewald. The two musicians, who continue to work together professionally, also collaborated on the 2008 Tony-winning musical Passing Strange.

15:04

Conductor Marin Alsop on Keeping Alive a Black Composer's Music

Alsop is the music director of the Colorado Symphony. One of the few woman conductors in the world, she has also served as music director of the Lond Island Philharmonic, and has been the guest conductor for many orchestras, including the St. Louis Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Boston Pops Orchestra. Her new CD "Victory Stride," features the work of the African American composer James P. Johnson.

09:59

Bill Lee Discusses his "School Daze."

Jazz composer and conductor Bill Lee. He composed the scores for the films "She's Gotta Have It" and "School Daze," both written and directed by his son, Spike Lee. "School Daze," Spike Lee's most recent film, is loosely based on his experiences at Moorehead College in Atlanta, the same college Bill Lee and his father attended.

06:54

Duke Ellington's Music and Life.

Jazz Critic Kevin Whitehead will review a reissue of the 1959 album, "Ellington Jazz Party." His review includes a discussion of the controversial biography of Duke Ellington by James Lincoln Collier, controversial because Collier alleges that true credit for many of Ellington's most famous tunes belongs to his band members.

24:11

Jazz Saxophonist and Composer Frank Foster

The accomplished musician made his mark as a member of Count Basie's band. Foster later earned his Ph.D. in music and worked as an educator. He now leads his own big band, an endeavor he admits is difficult to sustain financially.

01:05:11

Composer Anthony Davis

Davis is an avant-garde composer whose work draws heavily from jazz traditions. He wrote a new opera called X, based on the life of Malcom X. He performs the overture live in-studio.

31:36

Mercer Ellington on His Father's Work and Legacy.

Mercer Ellington is a trumpeter, composer, and band leader. He is also the son of jazz legend Duke Ellington. Mercer Ellington is the conductor for the musical based on Duke Ellington's work, "Sophisticated Ladies." Mercer Ellington joins the show to discuss the musical and his father.

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