With each turn, the kaleidoscope transforms us with a variety of sounds! We thank you for joining us on a journey to Kansas City, St. Louis, Memphis, and other Midwestern cities. Behind the scenes here at KUVO JAZZ, on the air, online, and in the community, the music is possible and powerful because of your support!


Kansas City, MO is historically one of the premiere cities for jazz, home to Charlie Parker, Count Basie, Jay McShann, Big Joe Turner, Lester Young, and Ben Webster. Popular jazz clubs are Lonnie’s Reno Club, The Mutual Musician’s Foundation, and The Blue Room, managed by the American Jazz Museum.

St. Louis, MO and East St. Louis, IL is home to many innovators and genres of jazz from titan Miles Davis, Oliver Nelson, Clark Terry, Coleman Hawkins, and Grant Green; to alchemists Oliver Lake, Hamiet Bluett;  contemporary jazz musicians Bob James and David Sanborn; and the latest generation Greg Osby, Eric Person, Esperanza Spalding and Keyon Harrold who’ve expanded the music beyond traditional, straight ahead jazz. Cal Tjader is considered one of the premier Latin jazz musicians from this Mid-Western city as well as hard bopper Jimmy Forrest. Jazz St. Louis, Nancy’s Jazz Lounge at the Harold and Dorothy Stewart Center for Jazz.

Memphis, TN is known for blues and that soul and is the hometown of B.B. King and Bobby Blue Bland. The city’s soul roots also extend to jazz. Memphis celebrates saxophonists George Coleman, Hank Crawford, Sonny Criss, and Charles Lloyd, vocalists Dee Dee Bridgewater, and Albert Hunter, trumpeter Booker Little, and pianists Donald Brown, James Williams, and Harold Mabern Jr. Check out live music at B.B. King’s Blues Club.

Stellar jazz talent isn’t only nurtured in New Orleans and New York! Midwestern States with major jazz artists include Indianapolis, IN claims The Montgomery Brothers Wes, Buddy and Monk, trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, trombonist J.J. Johnson, and alto saxophonist/flutist James Spaulding. Cleveland, Ohio is the hometown of the great pianist, composer, and arranger Tadd Dameron and vocalist Vanessa Rubin. Other great musicians came out of Ohio, Joe Henderson, Lima, OH; Nancy Wilson, Chillicothe, OH; Stanley Cowell, Toledo, OH; Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Columbus, OH; and Milwaukee, WI is the hometown of drummer, composer, educator, and bandleader Carl Allen.

Stay connected to KUVO’s programs and our community! Sign up for the Oasis E-News today!

Photography: top to bottom – Paul Shinn playing at The Green Lady Lounge, Clark Terry, BB King, Rahsaan Roland Kirk

Become a Member

Join the growing family of people who believe that music is essential to our community. Your donation supports the work we do, the programs you count on, and the events you enjoy.

Download the App

Download KUVO's FREE app today! The KUVO Public Radio App allows you to take KUVO's music and news with you anywhere, anytime!