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Jazz Beat #59 - Jazz critic Gary Giddins on Sonny Rollins

Sonny Rollins
Steven Sussman
Sonny Rollins, Litchfield Jazz Festival, 2002 Photo by Steven Sussman, used by permission

For Jazz Beat episode 59, Tom Reney spoke with the renowned jazz critic and biographer Gary Giddins about Sonny Rollins. The interview was conducted in 2010, before Rollins received the MacDowell Medal from the MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire. Giddins chaired the committee that voted to honor Rollins, the only jazz artist to receive the medal which has been awarded annually since 1960.

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Tom was honored by the Jazz Journalists Association with the Willis Conover-Marian McPartland Award for Career Excellence in Broadcasting in 2019. In addition to hosting Jazz à la Mode since 1984, Tom writes the jazz blog and produces the Jazz Beat podcast at NEPM. He began working in jazz radio in 1977 at WCUW, a community-licensed radio station in Worcester, Massachusetts. Tom holds a BA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he majored in English and African American Studies.