Let's Hear It

C. Lieurance

During the time the Soviet Union was falling apart in the 1990s, Edisher Savitski was a young pianist pursuing a career in music while supporting the independence movement in his country, the Democratic Republic of Georgia. 

An invitation to study in the United States changed his life.

Keith Hall talks to two homegrown artists who are beginning international careers in music. Kalamazoo singer/songwriter Nashon Holloway, equally at home in jazz, soul, and folk, has taken two months-long trips to Dubai to perform. Portage native Bryan Blowers, one of the most versatile guitarists west Michigan has produced, will spend the 2014-15 season cruising the oceans for Royal Carribean as a ship musician. 

LHI: Jon Boyd On William Grant Still

Oct 15, 2014

WMUK contributor Jon Boyd talks about the life and music of American composer William Grant Still, whose Symphony No. 1 "Afro-American" he ranks as one of his favorite pieces of all time. 

William Grant Still's musical experience ranged from advanced degrees at the Oberlin Conservatory to working as an arranger for W.C. Handy. His pride in his heritage as an African-American showed in the many works he composed which blended blues, jazz, and folk melodies into classical forms. 

gregjasperse.com

Greg Jasperse has his hands full as a professor of vocal jazz at Western Michigan University, and director of the school's renowned vocal jazz ensemble Gold Company

He's also continuing to perform and arrange for professional vocal groups Vertical Voices and Sixth Wave on both coasts.

geneknific.com

Gene Knific, the son of two Western Michigan University music professors, began studying jazz at the college level while still in high school. 

After four years at the University of Miami, he moved back to Kalamazoo this summer, re-introducing himself to the region with a performance at the Fontana summer festival.

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