WNUR Conference of the Birds, 2012-08-14 (Von Freeman Memorial)

“Conference of the Birds” is my weekly radio program on WNUR-FM. It airs on Tuesdays from 5-7:30 am Chicago time (UTC-5). And, of course, when technology cooperates, you can just come here for the archives. You can subscribe to the podcast with this URL (click here to subscribe in iTunes).

Chicago tenor saxophone legend Von Freeman passed away on Saturday before the show. I don’t have a lot of his music myself, but I found several nice records in the station’s vinyl stacks and was able to put together about an hour-long tribute to his memory. I also played a couple from his son Chico before rolling into some soul, and from there a pretty discontinuous (but no less interesting) set of tunes.

Just a few days earlier, I’d been talking with a friend about trying to go down to catch one of Von’s Tuesday night jam sessions at the New Apartment Lounge. Alas, now we won’t have the chance. Let this be a reminder to you to give ’em their flowers while they’re living—don’t take your favorite musicians for granted!



download program (140MB, 2 hrs 33 min)

Artist: “Track” – Album (Label)
Von Freeman: “Song For My Father” – Dedicated to You (Steeplechase)
Von Freeman: “Hyde Park After Dark” – Hyde Park After Dark (Bee Hive)
Von Freeman: “Doin’ It Right Now” – Doin’ It Right Now (Atlantic)
Von Freeman: “Have No Fear, Soul is Here” – Have No Fear (Nessa)
Von Freeman: “After Dark” – Serenade & Blues (Nessa)
Von Freeman: “Polka Dots & Moonbeams” – Have No Fear (Nessa)
Chico Freeman: “Merger” – Chico (India Navigation)
Chico Freeman & Bobby McFerrin: “Sangoma and Nelly” – Tangents (Elektra Musician)
Ruth Brown: “Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean” – Night Train to Nashville: Music City Rhythm & Blues 1945-1970 (Lost Highway)
William Bell: “Any Other Way” – The Complete Stax/Volt Singles: 1959-1968 (Atlantic)
The Violinaires: “Old Time Religion” – None But The Righteous: Chess Gospel Greats (Chess)
Aretha Franklin: “Don’t Play That Song” – Live at Fillmore West (Atlantic)
Orchestre Poly Rhythmo: “Se Tche We Djo Mon” – The Vodoun Effect: Funk & Sato from Benin’s Obscure Labels (1972-1975) (Analog Africa)
Peregoyo y su Combo Vacaná: “Ola de agua” – The Afrosound of Colombia Volume 1 (Vampisoul)
Ferreira do Nascimento: “Macongo Me Chiquita” – Angola Soundtrack: The Unique Sound of Luanda (1968-1976) (Analog Africa)
Billy Higgins/Charles Lloyd: “Bis” – Which Way is East (ECM)
Irene Buyiswa Ndumo & the Jury Mpelho Band: “Puma Endlini Yam (Get Out of My House)” – Siya Hamba! 1950s South African Country and Small Town Sounds (Original Music)
The Sultans: “Lemon Squeezing Daddy” – The Dawn of Doo-Wop (Proper)
Adam Snider: “Swamp Angel” – Berkeley Guitar (Tompkins Square)
Charlie Parr: “Jesus at the Kenmore” – 1922 (self-released)
Nazarene Congregational Church Choir of Brooklyn: “Who’ll Join This Union” – How Can I Keep from Singing, Vol. 1 (Yazoo)
Silver Sand: “Kaw-Liga” – Thai Beat a Go-Go, Vol. 1 (Subliminal Sounds)
Andrew Hill: “Ode to Von” – Smoke Stack (Blue Note)
James Brown: “Hot Pants Finale (Live)” – Make It Funky/The Big Payback 1971-1975 (Polydor)
Herbie Hancock: “Chameleon” – Flood (Columbia)