Bill Pearce

Music Producer and Host

Bill was born and raised in a sod hut on the Kansas plains.

And then he graduated with a degree in clarinet performance from Simpson College in Indianola. While in Iowa, Pearce worked at a commercial radio station playing pop-like music records and reading news. 

After college, he returned to Wichita and began a career in photography. He worked for KWCH, at a commercial photo studio and later for Cessna. Pearce got back into radio when he found a job at the now-defunct Friends University station. He played classical music during the week and hosted his own jazz show on Saturdays.

For the past eight years, Pearce has read magazines like Sports Illustrated and Entertainment Weekly for the Wichita Radio Reading Service, which is in the same building as KMUW. That’s how General Manager Mark McCain found him. Straight No Chaser features mostly instrumental jazz, from early music to recent recordings. Also listen for the record labels, names of all the musicians involved, and when the recording was made.

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Sunday, February 14

Tonight we hear the first release from the Interplay Jazz Orchestra - Detour - and a new release from tenor saxophonist and flutist Charles Lloyd.

Lloyd's new album, I Long To See You, finds the widely celebrated performer in collaboration with his New Quartet and added guests -- appearing here as The Marvels. Plus added vocals from Willie Nelson and Norah Jones.


 Sunday, February 7

Tonight we take the cellophane off the first big shipment of new releases for the year, including great ones from  Renee Rosnes, Dr. Lonnie Smith, and Lionel Loueke.

Sunday, January 31

In this installment, we hear older classics from Buck Clayton and Miles Davis and brand new things from Chucho Valdes and the Jeff Hamilton/Scott Hamilton group. 

Sunday, January 23

Tonight, we combine jazz gems from the early 1950's to the early 2000's with selections from our "Best Of..." lists.

Album Cover Art

Sunday, January 17

Tonight on the show we'll hear some selections from Straight No Chaser's favorite new releases of 2015 including music from Kenny Burrell, George Cables and more. Find more details as well as the full list that was featured as part of KMUW's Best Music of 2015.

Sunday, January 10

We'll  hear piano greats Marian McPartland, Tommy Flanagan and George Cables, great guitarists Kenny Burrell and Russell Malone, and bebop in different disguises from the Maynard Ferguson band and Art Blakey.

Here are the 2015 releases that I find best:

Music hosts Jedd Beaudoin, Chris Heim, Carla Eckels and Bill Pearce run down the best in music for 2015 - including selections for world, rock, local music, jazz, R&B, gospel, blues, rockumentaries and books about music.

Sunday, December 27

New Year's Day is almost here. Just for chuckles, we again hear a band vocal from the Maynard Ferguson band, and Diana Krall asks what are we are doing New Year's Eve. Then lots of great saxophone with Harry Allen, Jim Snidero and Gerry Mulligan.

Sunday, December 20

Our last show before Christmas brings us Al Grey and Jimmy Smith with Christmas standards, along with recent recordings with Huston Person, Denise Donatelli and Russell Malone.