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.

Ways To Connect

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Sunday, February 1

Now that the Best of 2014 feature is over, it's time for some new material. We’ve had a whole month to receive new Straight No Chaser music. Tonight, hear The Cookers's newest release,Time and Time Again, ​named the itunes 2014 Jazz Album of the Year. We'll also hear Ian Sims and Divergent Paths's new project, Conundrum. From our library, the Harper Brothers and Brother Jack McDuff.

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Sunday, January 25

It's our final show of Straight No Chaser featuring the Best of 2014. Favorites this time include Theo Croker's Afro Physicist album, the DePaul University Jazz Ensemble's salute to Woody Herman, and Eric Alexander's Chicago Fire.

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Sunday, January 18

Hear more of our favorite tunes from 2014 including the Chicago Jazz Orchestra, Brian Lynch and Emmet Cohen's Questioned Answer, and Enjoy The View from Bobby Hutcherson, David Sanborn, Joey DeFrancesco and Billy Hart.

  Music hosts Jedd Beaudoin, Chris Heim, Carla Eckels and Bill Pearce run down the best in music for 2014 - including selections for world, rock, local music, jazz, R&B, gospel, blues, rockumentaries and books about music.

Music hosts Jedd Beaudoin, Chris Heim, Carla Eckels and Bill Pearce run down the best in music for 2014 - including selections for world, rock, local music, jazz, R&B, gospel, blues, rockumentaries and books about music.

Sunday, December 7:

Straight No Chaser will feature Christmas music through the first three Sundays of December. Listen for festive tunes from the likes of Dexter Gordon, Matt Wilson and more.

Web extra: Matt Wilson and his band perform a holiday "tiny desk concert" on NPR music.

Sunday, November 30

We conclude our celebration of Adolphe Sax’s birthday tonight on Straight No Chaser. Hear from alto saxophonist Art Pepper, plus Ken Peplowski, Plas Johnson and Gerry Mulligan. Tonight's program also includes the Four Altos: Phil Woods, Gene Quill, Hal Stein and Sahib Shihab.

Sunday, November 23

The celebration of Adolphe Sax and the saxophone continues tonight on Straight No Chaser. Hear from tenor saxophonist Houston Person, brothers Cannonball and Nat Adderley, plus Bud Shank, Gene Ammons with his big band, Ike Quebec, and Pete Christlieb with Lou Levy.

Sunday, November 16

If you haven't heard yet, the saxophone was invented by Adolphe Sax. This month marks his 200th birthday, and we're celebrating all November long. Tonight we hear Ben Webster and Johnny Hodges, Stan Getz, Dexter Gordon, Zoot Sims and Supersax. And don't worry, next month we aren't going to tell you it's the birthday of trumpet inventor, Donald Trump.

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