Jazz and poetry enrich Tallahassee

From radio to live performances, Sundays in Tallahassee are becoming the jazziest day of the week. Yianni’s and 90.5 WANM FM are now providing the community with jazz.

Since Feb. 3, The Sessions, which held the Sunday 1 to 4 p.m. slot on WANM, was moved to the 7 to 10 p.m. slot.

This made room for new DJ Philbert Andrews, aka “Philonious”, to spin traditional and contemporary jazz tracks for listeners on his new show Jazz Central Station.

“I really wanted to bring jazz back to the station,” said Philonious.

“When FAMU’s station first started, it was all jazz, but then it just went away, and now is the perfect time for a comeback.”

The show features music spanning from the entire jazz era, with the musical artistry of such greats as Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Nat and Cannonball Adderley and the big band swing of Sir Duke Ellington and the Count Bassie Band.

Philonious encourages listeners to tune in because he feels there is a lot to be learned from the jazz pioneers that rarely roam the airways.

“I heard the show last Sunday for the first time and it was wonderful to here some traditional jazz music on 90.5,” said Jarritt Sheel, 24, a senior music student and jazz trumpeter from Ft. Lauderdale.

Along with jazz radio by day, Yianni’s is now showcasing jazz by night, with Love Jones from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Love Jones, brought to Tallahassee through Dia and Marco Entertainment, includes live jazz, poetry, “seductive hip-hop” and the music of Rasta Funk and DJ Kool Ant, who spins from 12 to 2 a.m.

“The whole scene was nice, but I definitely liked the band Rasta Funk,” said Melanie Marsh, 21, an FSU theatre student from Ocala.

“It’s good that Tallahassee now has a weekly venue like Love Jones to add a little more culture,” Marsh said.

The ambiance, complete with low lighting, candles on all sides and an open mic at center stage, is a set that is catered to satisfy those who like poetry, music and a change from the everyday club experience.

Marco Molinet, one of the promotional managers of Love Jones said that Love Jones will add more diversity to the nightlife scene, and will add a little more flavor to Sunday nights.

“People are really getting into scenes like Love Jones,” Molinet said.

“Our crowds have continued to grow since our first show about three weeks ago, and from the looks of things, the people will keep coming,” he said.

The show starts off with poets and lyricists blessing the mic, and ends with everyone on the dance floor.

“It was a different atmosphere, one that somebody could bring their significant other too without having to worry about other people trying to tug on them,” said Clarance Franklin after attending the show Sunday night.

The two events should add a little more culture to the city, and listeners and spectators alike seem to enjoy the change in musical performances.