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Frank Sinatra: Jazz His Way

[First published in WRTI’s Arts Desk 4 Dec 2015.] Frank Sinatra was born 100 years ago on December 12th, and there have been any number of stars in the entertainment world during that century. But WRTI’s Kile Smith looks at what truly sets him apart from all the...

The Legacy of Dave Brubeck

[First published in WRTI’s Arts Desk, 30 Nov 2015.] December 6th is Dave Brubeck’s birthday, and WRTI’s Kile Smith looks at the secret behind the legacy of this giant of jazz. Dave Brubeck may be the most unlikely of jazz pianists. He almost was tossed from...

Scott Joplin Made Ragtime His Own

[First published in WRTI’s Arts Desk 23 Nov 2015.] This week we celebrate Scott Joplin’s birthday, which many believe was on November 24th, 1868. WRTI’s Kile Smith looks at a facet of his life that may have led to that unique contribution he made to American...

This Song Changed the Course of Music

[First published in WRTI’s Arts Desk 19 Oct 2015] Two hundred one years ago this week, Franz Schubert wrote a song that would alter the course of music history. “Gretchen at the Spinning Wheel” is an unassuming title for Schubert’s first masterpiece and the start of...