Jazz Fest Day 2 – Friday Night is Music Night

I’ve been broadcasting at the Cheltenham Jazz Festival over the last couple of days for Jazztown 87,7 FM which I’ve really enjoyed. Its made me a ‘specialist music’ broadcaster for the first time, even more so today because I was better prepared and even brought in some of my own music collection to play.

This evening I left my show a little early in order to go to one of the events. I had tickets to see the Friday Night is Music Night performance which was going out live on BBC Radio 2.

The live performance looked at the life and music of Ray Charles, and involved the BBC Concert Orchestra (their lorry has been parked opposite our studio all day) and the Guy Barker Big Band plus vocalists Gregory Porter, Madeline Bell and James Tormé; it was presented by actor David Harewood.

I knew the event was going to be good early on because I heard them rehearsing whilst I was at in the Jazz Festival bar with Johnny, Robin and Jelmer before I went on air.

I have to say that the sound in the room was brilliant – the sound of a whole orchestra just a few feet away from you. Listening on the radio isn’t the same: for the full experience with this type of music you have to hear and see it live! That said, if you missed it, it doesn’t sound bad on iPlayer. Its just that its not the same as being in the same room as the orchestra!

The three vocalists were amazing too; particularly Gregory Porter whose music I was playing a lot on my show on Jazztown FM this evening. He has an excellent singing voice.

I thoroughly enjoyed the evening and would highly recommend a visit to the Jazz Festival at some point over the weekend – its here until Monday.


Today’s blog post was originally posted on my Radio Listening Blog. My Radio Listening Blog is where I blog daily about something I’ve listened to on the radio.

Fred Hart

Stock Controller and Radio Presenter/Producer

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