KBEM

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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.

Series

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20 Pieces

Joan Griffith, Twin Cities musician and educator, has conversations with prominent Minnesota jazz musicians.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: May 25, 2016
Caption: Joan Griffith, Credit: Ann Marsen
20 Pieces

Joan Griffith, Twin Cities guitar player and educator, interviews Minnesota jazz artists.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: May 27, 2016
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13 Pieces

Minneapolis Public School teachers talk with Kevin O'Connor about their accomplishments.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jul 14, 2011
Caption: Leigh Kamman, Credit: Andrea Canter
57 Pieces

During his 60-plus years in jazz broadcasting, Leigh Kamman conducted hundreds of interviews with jazz artists, including many from the Minnesota scene. These are being preserved and edited by the Leigh Kamman Legacy Project and presented as The Jazz Image: Minnesota Edition, a continuation of the The Jazz Image: Special Edition series. These projects are part of the process of preserving and sharing the massive archive of historical recordings he left when he passed away in October 2014.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jun 29, 2020
Caption: Leigh Kamman, Credit: Andrea Canter
14 Pieces

Minnesota jazz broadcasting legend Leigh Kamman conducted hundreds of interviews with jazz artists, including some of jazz's illustrious figures. Now, these treasures have been lovingly preserved and edited into a new series of broadcasts, The Jazz Image: Special Edition. These recordings preserve priceless conversation Leigh Kamman had with such luminaries as Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan and Stan Kenton. In his ninth decade, Kamman adds fresh commentary to round out these 5 minute broadcasts, 13 in all in this series.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jan 14, 2014
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798 Pieces

5 to 8-minute, highly produced heads-ups highlighting great musical activities in the Twin Cities broadly conceived. The pieces feature the musicians, their music, club owners, fans, in short all of those responsible for creating musical experiences.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Dec 10, 2019
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0 Pieces

Viva City, Festival of the Arts, was initiated thirteen years ago as a way to showcase arts education in Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS). In this pod cast, we feature the musical portion of Viva City from the Ted Mann Concert Hall at the University of Minneapolis.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: May 29, 2011
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31 Pieces

Minneapolis High School Students comment on Minnesota Arts, Culture and History

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Aug 24, 2011

Latest Pieces

Caption: Davu Seru, Credit: Andrea Canter
His main musical means of expression is improvising, but he also composes. As it turns out it’s not as crazy a combination as it might seem. Davu S...

  • Added: Mar 08, 2017
  • Length: 08:09
Caption: Davu Seru, Credit: Andrea Canter
Davu Seru is the current Studio Z composer in Residence. Among his goals is combining west African-based traditions such as drumming and the blues...

  • Added: Mar 06, 2017
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Jon Pemberton, Credit: Lana Pemberton
When you listen to Jon Pemberton, the feeling that he has much to offer grows and grows. He is best known as a piano player, and you’ll see him as ...

  • Added: Feb 24, 2017
  • Length: 08:20
Caption: Jon Pemberton, Credit: Lana Pemberton
Jon Pemberton loves solo piano shows because it allows him to explore a lot of interesting music. He says, too, that Vieux Carré, where he plays on...

  • Added: Feb 24, 2017
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Zack Baltich, Credit: Matt Barber
If you want to know about a creative spirit, take the case of Zack Baltich. Zack synthesizes his informal and formal music experiences to create so...

  • Added: Feb 21, 2017
  • Length: 08:20
Caption: The Nightingale Trio, Credit: Margie O’Loughlin
The Nightingale Trio presents Eastern European folksongs. In the process, the group gives American audiences glimpses into the ways of life in East...

  • Added: Feb 19, 2017
  • Length: 07:34
Caption: Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra, Credit: Diego Ramallo
The Twin Cities Latin Jazz orchestra is a 19-piece group playing in the 21st century. The size of the band might seem incongruous in an era of stri...

  • Added: Feb 19, 2017
  • Length: 06:59
Caption: Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra, Credit: Diego Ramallo
A few years ago, Jeff Senn and Mac Santiago, experienced Minnesota jazz players, noticed a lack of a Latin Jazz Orchestra locally. So they recruite...

  • Added: Feb 16, 2017
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Pert Near Sandstone, Credit: Jayme Halbritter
Pert Near Sandstone. They had been friends most of their lives which turns out to be a great basis for driving around the country as a band.

  • Added: Feb 07, 2017
  • Length: 08:52
Caption: Pert Near Sandstone, Credit: Jayme Halbritter
Mid February heats up with a weekend of hot string band performances at the Cedar Cultural Center. Kevin and Nate of Pert Near Sandstone told Phil ...

  • Added: Feb 07, 2017
  • Length: 05:00