Guest Student DJ Anton Bingham: Jazz Connects Others Through Self Expression In Music

Jul 7, 2016

Note: Each month, KPLU invites a teen guest DJ to play his or her favorite pieces on the air. The program is part of KPLU's School of Jazz.

Anton Bingham from Shorecrest High School is the Student DJ for the month of July. Anton's hour aired from 8 to 9 p.m. on July 7.

To get to know him better, we asked Anton to answer a few questions about jazz:

Which instrument do you play and why?

Tenor sax. When I first started playing music I picked the clarinet on a whim. Once I started getting into jazz it only seemed like a natural transition to switch to saxophone, and tenor has been my primary instrument for the last six years. I instantly fell in love with the range and tone of the instrument, and I can never seem to get enough.

What’s your all-time favorite jazz piece and why?

The Bad Plus and Joshua Redman’s "Beauty Has It Hard." The odd time and note choices give this piece an unusually pretty feel, and Redman’s melodic and soulful improvisation is really showcased well with such a strong rhythm section. I find myself playing along with the recording at least once every time I practice, and I haven’t found another song that speaks to me quite like this one.

Who’s your jazz hero and why?

My jazz hero definitely has to be John Coltrane. Coltrane’s unmatched spiritual and technical dedication to his music is something to marvel at, and I am always blown away by the wall of sound that he created. I think Coltrane got to the core of self expression in jazz, and even if someone doesn’t like listening to him they definitely have something to learn from him.

What is jazz, exactly? How would you explain it?

Jazz is a means of connecting to others through self expression in music.

Anton's Playlist:

  1. “STOLEN MOMENTS” OLIVER NELSON (Blues & the Abstract Truth)
  2. “BEAUTY HAS IT HARD” BAD PLUS/JOSHUA REDMAN (The Bad Plus Joshua Redman)
  3. “SYEEDA’S SONG FLUTE” JOHN COLTRANE (Giant Steps)
  4. “TEREZA MY LOVE” ANTONIO CARLOS JOBIM (Stone Flower)
  5. “RECORDA ME” JOE HENDERSON (Page One)
  6. “REEF KNOT” ROLLER TRIO (Fracture)
  7. “BODY AND SOUL” DEXTER GORDON (Homecoming: Live at the Village Vanguard)