Tom Reney

Jazz à la Mode Host

Tom has been producing Jazz à la Mode since 1984.  He began working in jazz radio in 1977 at WCUW, a community-licensed radio station in Worcester, Massachusetts. Before his career in radio began, Tom had many formative experiences hearing and meeting some of the icons of jazz and blues, all of which ignited his passion for sharing the music with others. Tom earned a BA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he majored in English and American Studies.

In addition to his hosting duties at New England Public Radio, Tom writes NEPR's jazz blog and produces our JazzBeat podcast, and lectures occasionally on music and cultural topics at UMass, Amherst, Smith, Hampshire, and Mt. Holyoke Colleges. He and his wife Margaret live in Holyoke.

Ways to Connect

In this heartfelt memorial tribute to New Orleans great Allen Toussaint, NEPR's Tom Reney remembers the music, but also the soul, of a "great and good man."

Jazz Beat pays a visit to the Chairman of the Board. Tom Reney shares stories and favorite tunes from Frank Sinatra in advance of New England Public Radio's Sinatra/Holiday Party on December 12th, 2015!

The great jazz vocalist Mark Murphy passed away in October. NEPR's Tom Reney takes a look back on his career and influence.

Jazz Beat #7 - B B King

Sep 29, 2015

The King of the Blues had a profound influence on all who saw him perform, including New England Public Radio's Tom Reney. This podcast is a look back at BB King's career and influence, with some samples of his wonderful music.

On Jazz Beat, Tom Reney focuses on the Newport Folk Festival fifty years ago, when the Paul Butterfield Blues Band brought the electric blues to Newport and Bob Dylan followed suit.

Louis Armstrong appeared in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1933, and the film made then is one of the earliest records of Armstrong's live performances. It forms an invaluable touchstone for jazz scholarship. Tom Reney explores Louis' stage personas and samples some music from that Danish appearance.

Barney Kessel was one of the best jazz guitarists of all time. This podcast is a look at his story and his style, with some great music mixed in.

New England Public Radio's Tom Reney reflects on jazz singer Sheila Jordan and the quality of her recent performances.

July 25th marked the 50th anniversary of Bob Dylan going electric at the Newport Folk Festival. The milestone is being widely commemorated, and it follows the sale two years ago of the Fender Stratocaster he played that Sunday night. Elijah Wald’s new book, Dylan Goes Electric: Newport, Seeger, Dylan, and the Night That Split the Sixties, tells the story more accurately and contextually than any previous renderings

I didn’t see Ornette Coleman until 1971 when he played the Saturday afternoon program of the Newport Jazz Festival with his old comrades Dewey Redman, Charlie Haden, and Ed Blackwell. It was fortuitous that he shared the afternoon bill with Eubie Blake, Willie “The Lion” Smith, Freddie Hubbard, Charles Mingus, and the New York Bass Violin Choir, for that evening a riot interrupted Dionne Warwick’s performance of “What the World Needs Now” and the festival came to a crashing halt.

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