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Recognized as the Twin Cities’ public radio voice for jazz and education, KBEM is a program of the Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) Approximately 150 students annually participate in KBEM’s hands-on educational program, which focuses on all aspects of broadcasting and production. Students who develop their skills and select broadcasting experience can gain significant on-air time. The station is on-air 24/7 with 35 hours of student programming each week, with live professional announcers and pre-recorded, syndicated programming filling out the rest of the schedule. KBEM is the only station in the Twin Cities market which offers a jazz format and officially provides MN-DOT traffic reports.

KBEM was initially established at Minneapolis Vocational High School in the 1960s. The station was moved to North High School in 1983 as a part of the District’s desegregation initiative and it continues to reside there today. The vast majority of KBEM students attend North High School.


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62 Pieces

Minneapolis High School Students, with the help of a team of educators and poets, were encouraged to write poetry. The poems created by the students are in some cases hard-hitting, and in others, cute.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jan 13, 2014
Caption: Susan Spongberg, Credit: Frank T. Heffelfinger III
9 Pieces

Minnesota Creates is curious about how creativity occurs, so Susan Spongberg asked an assortment of Minnesota artists how do you choreography a dance? Where do your novel’s characters come from? How do you decide what to paint?

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jan 14, 2014
Caption: Minnesota Jazz Legends: The Elders, Credit: Jim Davis
7 Pieces

Minnesota has many wonderful jazz musicians, still playing well into their 80's. Minnesota Jazz Legends: The Elders, features live and in studio performances and interviews, talking about their careers in the Twin Cities from early on to present.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Nov 11, 2021
Caption: Jazz 88 FM, Credit: http://www.jazz88fm.com
15 Pieces

Minnesota Music Moment is a weekly feature of KBEM FM 88.5, each week highlighting a different Minnesota musician.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Feb 25, 2011
Caption: KBEM logo, Credit: Tim Nyberg (Octane Creative)
425 Pieces

Each item in the series tells how a musicians is inspired, how s/he works, their goals and intents for their work; in general, how each gets motivation and follows through with a creative project.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Oct 09, 2015
Caption: Arne Fogel, Credit: John Whiting
65 Pieces

Minnesota Voices-Certain Standards Minnesota Vocalists perform new renditions of the Great American Songbook. Arne Fogel-Host

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Oct 31, 2012
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2 Pieces

In a world and time of differences, music has the power to bring us together, to unite us through a shared experience. Music knows no boundaries. It transcends that which keeps us apart. Join Jazz88 for an evening of discovery with Music Without Borders.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Sep 04, 2019
Caption: Bobb Fantauzzo performing with Lyz Jaakola, Credit: Andrea Canter
18 Pieces

Native flute player Bobb Fantauzzo illuminates the contributions made by jazz musicians with Native American heritage.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Apr 19, 2016
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4 Pieces

Butch Thompson's Piano Bench Show looks at the piano stylings of the early performers of jazz.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jul 14, 2011
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0 Pieces

Perspectives relating to Minnesota culture, history and the arts contributed by Minneapolis high school students.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Apr 04, 2010

Latest Pieces

Caption: KBEM logo, Credit: Tim Nyberg (Octane Creative)
Sonny Knight and the Lakers. Sonny has roots in blues funk and r and b, and has been performing virtually his whole life. Today, focused on music a...

  • Added: Dec 17, 2016
  • Length: 07:40
Caption: Scottie Miller Band, Credit: Jim Vazquez
Many bands start out as good ideas. But it takes talent and commitment to for bands to grow. That is the case with the Scottie Miller Band. The gro...

  • Added: Dec 16, 2016
  • Length: 08:07
Caption: Scottie Miller Band, Credit: Jim Vazquez
The Scottie Miller Band. The group has been around a long time, and it has always been a creative and evolving unit playing original music. And the...

  • Added: Dec 16, 2016
  • Length: 04:59
Caption: Jazz 88 logo, Credit: Tim Nyberg (Octane Creative)
It’ll be familiar Christmas songs, but not the same old way as Cedric Fuller leads Global Sound into the Black Dog in Saint Paul. Cedric told Phil ...

  • Added: Dec 14, 2016
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Lori Dokken, Credit: Jennifer Bong
The Lori Dokken Story is one of constant growth. She started out playing and singing, but now she also arranges music and directs ensembles. She sp...

  • Added: Dec 05, 2016
  • Length: 09:19
Caption: PRX default Piece image
Sonny Knight. He’s Mississippi born, but has lived in Minnesota since childhood. He talked with Phil Nusbaum about music in general, and about his ...

  • Added: Dec 04, 2016
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Kate Lynch, Credit: Drew Shonka
Kate Lynch and Her Most Excellent Fellows started out almost by accident. But Kate fell in love with old jazz, took off with it and met some top-n...

  • Added: Dec 03, 2016
  • Length: 04:59
Caption: Cafe Accordion, Credit: Jim Dryden
Dan Newton is a Twin-Cities based accordionist who does it all on the accordion. Yes, he plays polkas and waltzes, but all kinds of pop music, too....

  • Added: Nov 27, 2016
  • Length: 09:10
Caption: Dakota Dave Hull, Credit: Dale B. Hanson
Dakota Dave Hull has been recording and performing for decades. But as time has moved forward, the output has increased. And it all seems original,...

  • Added: Nov 21, 2016
  • Length: 06:49
Caption: Dan Newton w/Cafe Accordion, Credit: Jim Dryden
Dan Newton is playing seemingly all the time and seemingly every musical genre. It all adds up to entertaining accordion-based shows with a great c...

  • Added: Nov 21, 2016
  • Length: 05:00