Ben Young is a Jazz researcher, historian and teacher, working in the field via radio and the record business for the last 25 years. He was the Director of Broadcasting and Operations of WKCR at Columbia University. In addition to archiving an estimated 5000 hours of on-air jazz programming, Young's roles at WKCR included host, engineer, and producer for several programs.
Since 2010, he has taught several courses at Lincoln Center's Swing U., including Jazz 101, Jazz 201, and Jazz 301. He designed and taught the Free Jazz course, as well as courses on Ornette Colman, Albert Ayler, Cecil Taylor, and Third Stream. Since 2013, Young has taught Oral History at Columbia University. Over the years, Young has served as a guest lecturer at Bennington College, New York University, Juilliard, the Library of Congress, and De Singel.
Ben Young is the author of Dixonia: a Bio-discography of Bill Dixon.
Young was nominated for a Grammy for Best Historical Package in 2000, 2006, and 2014. He received the Jazz Journalists’ Association Boxed Set Reissue of the Year award in 2005 and the Willis Conover–Marian McPartland Award for Broadcasting in 2009.
Ben Young's second interview with Professor Rich Falco
HOT TOPIC: REISSUES!!! If you have bought a jazz reissue within the past several years, chances are that Ben Young’s thumb prints will be on it! Working with such labels as Verve, BMG, Savoy, Mosaic and others, Ben worked catalogue development for more than 800 reissues! Visit his latest video interview here.
Ben Young's interview with Professor Rich Falco
Read Ben Young's interview with BASE about his work at WKCR
"WKCR is remarkable in that it's run by students yet is unlike any other college radio station. What's the key to maintaining KCR's integrity and seriousness of purpose through the constant student staff turnover?"
"WKCR is the custodian of many unique recordings, both of performances and interviews. What are some of the more noteworthy of those?"
"... you've interviewed countless musicians and peripheral characters, with a waste-no-time zeal and a desire to document their first-hand stories before they're lost to history. Who has granted you some of your more revelatory interviews, and who out there would you still like to talk with?"
Jazz 101 with Ben Young - WKCR's Director answers the tough question of what Jazz really is
WKCR's Archive Project - Dubbing reel to reel footage to make it accessible from their website
Triple Point Records
"Triple Point Records preserves timeless improvised creations in definitive physical editions — for the benefit of artists, listeners, and collectors."