Blues Before Sunrise

with Steve Cushing

Scheduled on

Wednesday 8:00 pm 10:00 pm

Broadcast from Chicago

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Steve Cushing showcases blues as part of a cultural landscape that includes jump and jive, rhythm and blues, swing, doo wop, gospel and recitation.

Blues Before Sunrise first hit the air in June 1980 and showcases blues as part of a cultural landscape that includes jump and jive, rhythm and blues, swing, doo wop, gospel, comedy, and recitation, and never is the music presented as kitsch or retro fashion in the way that some music has been exploited and trivialized. For Cushing the blues is a living African-American tradition with deep roots.

Steve Cushing, host and producer of ‘Blues Before Sunrise,’ has been collecting Blues records since graduating from high school over thirty-five years ago. Growing up in the suburbs of Chicago, the Blues was never far away. After earning a degree in Broadcast Communications from Columbia College of Chicago, Cushing transformed his interest in the Blues into a career, developing his skills at the Triton College radio station WRRG. In 1980, Steve Cushing took his program to Chicago’s WBEZ, the second largest public radio stations in the country. ‘Blues Before Sunrise’ went into national syndication in 1990 and is heard today on over 65 public radio stations. Cushing has served for ten years as the anchor for WBEZ’s nationwide broadcast of the Chicago Blues Festival and he has also been heard on the drums backing an impressive list of Chicago Blues veterans such as Son Seals Junior Wells and Sunnyland Slim. He has even produced a series of recordings by Magic Slim, Lurrie Bell and Smokey Smothers. Steve Cushing’s hobby has turned into his life’s work.

You can also grab Steve’s book of interviews with blues biggest stars, below.


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