The Beat

Saturdays 11am-2pm

'The Beat' is a weekly mix of jazz, blues and much more. Each week, host David Nicholas plays selections from WCMU's extensive record and CD library, and brings in some of his own favorite albums from home. 

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David Nicholas featured music from both Sonny Rollins and Sonny Clark.  Other featured artists included Grant Green and Art Farmer.

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After the heat of Summer Dance Party 2017 last week, some cool Charlie Parker tunes – vocal versions from a brand new CD.  I’m also happy to share new discs from Barbara Morrison and J.D. Allen.

Some classic vinyl too – cuts from Paul Gonsalves, Alphonso Johnson, Stan Getz, Grant Green and more!

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Flickr User Kev Herrera

This week on The Beat, we heard our annual Summer Dance Party themed music.  Featured artists included Johnny Otis, Bob Segar, Lee Dorsey, Otis Redding and many more!


This week on the Beat, we heard sounds from the past fifty years of WCMU Public Media.  We heard past themes from Nightside Jazz and Blues from the past.  We also heard music from Ella Fitzgerald, Sonny Stitt, Dizzy Gillespie and Harry Connick Jr.


1967 was quite a year – The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper and that kicked off The Summer of Love.  Only a few weeks later came the Monterey International Pop Festival which made superstars out of Otis Redding, Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix.

I wanted to catch all of that lightning in one bottle and feature some great jazz releases recorded that year too.  Enjoy, and Dig – it’s groovy!!!




Flickr User Alberto Cabello

On the show this week -- still more from the great new releases by Chick Corea and Jaco Pastorius – can’t get enough of these two new discs!

And it was cool to find two bits of history, looking back 45 years to the funk fusion of Miles Davis and back 60 years to bluesy jams from Thad Jones paired with Frank Wess!





With the 80th birthday of drummer Louis Hayes and the recent passing of fellow drummer Mickey Roker, it opened up the doors to so many recordings because both played with so many other musicians.

And when it comes to Gregg Allman, he’s one of my favorites from all the music I love…and with this show based in jazz, blues and more – he fit the bill in his solo work and of course with The Allman Brothers Band.  Sad to lose him this week.

For your Holiday Weekend, The Beat came up with some great Michigan Music from Sheila Landis, The New Reformation Dixieland Band and others.


Plus some great new music – more from Chick Corea’s new release, The Musician, Chris Hazelton’s Boogaloo 7 and debuts from the late Jaco Pastorious and Randy Brecker!!!  I wanted a mix that could go with you in the car, or around home on a holiday weekend.  Enjoy!




Lots of new releases in the last couple of weeks on The Beat -- a few more this week as we debut CDs from Sylvia Brooks, Tigran Hamasyian, Ray Mantilla and Yoko Miwa.


If it’s a show with not all new material, like for this one, I changed up the feel from Yoko Miwa and her piano trio to the Simone vocal and that flowed to Miles and Gil and on to Ellington and Basie.  And that just led nicely into vocal with big band and back to another new disc from vocalist Sylvia Brooks.


Gifts for mom? Maybe, if she digs great jazz!! More of the new and nearly new CDs this week on The Beat.

We'll hear more from the triple disc of Chick Corea, plus Matt Kane, Oscar Hernandez, Tom Rizzo, Mason Razavi and Diana Krall!


Listen to this week's show: