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

Caption: Acme Big Band
1 Piece

This progam features Minnesota Big Bands, including the Nova Big Band, the Acme Big Band and the University of Minnesota. Twenty-five Big Bands in Minnesota have recorded CDs. Interviews with local Big Band personalities are presented occasionally.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Mar 23, 2010
Caption: PRX default Series image
3 Pieces

Minneapolis high school students script and read 60-second pieces based on research into important figures in African American history.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Feb 11, 2010
Caption: PRX default Series image
4 Pieces

"Classic Jazz MN" is a series exploring Minnesota's classic jazz roots. The series includes shows on Doc Evans, Doc Evans at the Walker Art Center, Preservation Hall Era and the Emporium of Jazz. Written and produced by Butch Thompson. Co-produced by Todd Melby.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Nov 23, 2011
Caption: Jazz At MPS with Josh Jones and the Dynamics
24 Pieces

Jazz music from students in the Minneapolis Public Schools.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jul 24, 2013
Caption: South High School Jazz Band-director/Scott Carter with guest Irvin Mayfield
6 Pieces

Jazz at South High features music from past and present South High Jazz Ensembles and brand new recordings by the South High Jazz Combo. Each week's show will feature never before heard performances of the South High Jazz Combo that are recorded at South High.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Jan 03, 2013
Caption: KBEM Jazz 88 FM, Credit: http://www.jazz88fm.com
4 Pieces

The Twin Cities Jazz Society annually presents a series of concerts by local artists. Jazz 88 chose six of these concerts to record for broadcast.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Apr 12, 2010
Caption: Butch at the Steinway, Credit: Ross Ayoka
4 Pieces

Butch Thompson hosts this program that features original jazz recordings and the occasional live performance.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Apr 24, 2011
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12 Pieces

Long-form interviews and performances by Minnesota musicians

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Nov 14, 2018
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12 Pieces

Junctions & Sidetracks, the story behind the creation of Empire Builder a musical about a time traveling train. Conversations about family, history, race and forgiveness. Music by George Mauer. Libretto by Ann Bertram. Funded by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: Mar 28, 2019
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31 Pieces

From humble beginnings in 1970, KBEM-FM has become the most powerful and longest-lasting radio station owned by a Minnesota school district, and one of the nation’s leading broadcast voices for jazz. Explore the people, places and events that have shaped KBEM’s first 50 years in this audio series.

  • From: KBEM
  • Updated: May 02, 2022

Latest Pieces

Piece image
In this episode, we head to Southwest High School and a spring jazz concert put on by various student combos and the Southwest Jazz Big Band, heade...

  • Added: Mar 18, 2024
  • Length: 57:30
Caption: Hot Club at the Hook poster image, Credit: Hook and Ladder
The Mississippi Hot Club, the Red Hot Django Peppers and Gypsy Mania, three leading hot club jazz bands are getting together for a concert on April...

  • Added: Mar 17, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: Yemi Love, Credit: Alvan Washington
Sue Scott is an actor who has always been touched by women's stories. So she started a series of live performances that are recorded and then poste...

  • Added: Mar 12, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: jazz88 logo 2022, Credit: Tim Nyberg (Octane Creative)
A.J. Srubas leads a group of great local fiddlers in a tribute to bluegrass fiddler, Kenny Baker. Baker served for many years as the fiddler in the...

  • Added: Mar 10, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: Twin Cities Flamenco Collective, Credit: Acer C. Wang
The Twin Cities Flamenco Collective continues at Icehouse in Minneapolis, Sunday March 17. It features its cast of local players as well as a singe...

  • Added: Mar 09, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: The Dregs, Credit: Amore Photography
The Dregs occupy a singular musical niche: Band members backgrounds are varied, but together, the group sings and plays twisted versions of songs, ...

  • Added: Mar 08, 2024
  • Length: 08:01
Caption: The Dregs, Credit: Amore Photography
The Dregs occupy a singular musical niche: Band members backgrounds are varied, but together, the group sings and plays twisted versions of songs, ...

  • Added: Mar 08, 2024
  • Length: 08:01
Caption: jazz88 logo 2022, Credit: Tim Nyberg (Octane Creative)
Power Up! Is the name of the Women’s Day Music Fest Friday night March 8 at the Hook and Ladder in Minneapolis. Billed as a celebration of women an...

  • Added: Feb 24, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: Sarah Larsson by Drew Arrieta, Credit: Drew Arrieta
Red Thread’s songs could be considered what happens when you combine traditional songs, new compositions and modern technology. The new CD is calle...

  • Added: Feb 23, 2024
  • Length: 08:00
Caption: GiftedHandz, Credit: Cynthia Abalo
GiftedHandz is a Minneapolis group of young people who have come up playing multiples styles in church settings. When Joe Mason, a GiftedHandz foun...

  • Added: Feb 20, 2024
  • Length: 08:00