Growing up in Detroit, Don Was remembers the first time he ever heard jazz music in his mom's car, listening to legendary jazz DJ Ed Love (who's still a fixture on WDET). Since that seminal moment, Was has gone on to be one of the biggest music producers in the business, working with the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Bonnie Raitt. (He produced her Grammy-winning album Nick of Time 25 years ago this year). Now, he's the president of Blue Note Records, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary. Since its inception, Blue Note has continued to push the threshold of jazz by signing artists who are constantly experimenting with new forms. "Change is kind of built into jazz on a cellular level," says Was, "It's supposed to constantly be evolving."
Hey! Did you enjoy this piece? We can’t do it without you. We are member-supported, so your donation is critical to KCRW's music programming, news reporting, and cultural coverage. Help support the DJs, journalists, and staff of the station you love.