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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779 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: Students playing
Join Yonci Jameson as Minneapolis Roosevelt High School Jazz Combos 1 and 2 perform live from Studio 1 at KBEM.

  • Added: May 14, 2015
  • Length: 57:48
Caption: JaAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske, Credit: Laurenb Photography
JoAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske. Jazz for voice, piano and bass. They’ve been holding forth Friday and Saturday nights at the St Paul hotel lobby for 7...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: May 09, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Ancia Saxophone Quartet, Credit: Daniel Soderstrom
The Ancia Saxophone Quartet specializes in contemporary American Saxophone quartet music. It’s a field that bridges formal music and jazz. The ense...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: May 03, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Reynaldo Moreno CD cover, Credit: ason Wozny
Reynaldo Moreno. He’s a young local guy to whom the Motown sound speaks. And so, he recreates some of the great Motown songs of a generation ago, a...

  • Added: Apr 23, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Jon Wood Plays DJ at KBEM-FM, Credit: Philip Nusbaum
Jon Wood stumbled into recording his first 2 CDs, both available at his CD release party on April 25 at the Black Dog Café in St Paul. He happened ...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: Apr 08, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Patty Peterson, Credit: Jennifer Bong
The Peterson Family of the Twin Cities is a Jazz family from ‘way back. They gain musical inspiration from each other and they are happiest when wo...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: Apr 07, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Charanga Tropical, Credit: Walter Horishnyk
Doug Little leads Minnesota’s great Charanga Band, Charanga Tropical. Charanga is a substyle of salsa, one that adds three violins to the mix. The ...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: Apr 04, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Chris Becknell at home, Credit: Phil Nusbaum
A representative of House of Mercy Recordings heard Chris Becknell play a few of his interpretations of hymns and gospel songs and wanted more. So ...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: Mar 25, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Orkesta Bez ime, Credit: Stefan Iwaskewycz
Orkestar Bez Ime, Bulgarian for orchestra with out a name, or OBI for short, has been performing in our town and more widely for well over a decade...

Bought by KSRQ


  • Added: Mar 22, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
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Twin Cities guitarist Zacc harris and vibes player Dave Hagedorn met over their admiration for a 1962 year old LP: Bags Meets Wes by vibraphonist M...

  • Added: Mar 08, 2015
  • Length: 05:00