Justin Steyer

Director of Digital Strategy

Justin facilitates management of Pacific Public Media’s digital department,  while implementing new and improved systems and platforms. Additionally, he is responsible for creative user interaction and involvement, as he actively works to improve service to the audience and support for our new media activities.

Before joining the KPLU staff in 2009, Steyer worked as a Web Producer for The Seattle Times; prior to that, he was responsible for photography, video and online content at The Bellingham Herald and worked in the capacity as editor and photographer at other Western Washington publications. In 2007, Steyer was awarded the Mark of Excellence by the Society of Professional Journalists in the area of sports photography.

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KPLU Studio Sessions
4:12 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Singer Jackie Ryan's life in music

Jackie Ryan and Seattle pianist, Randy Halberstadt, perform live in the KPLU Seattle studios on March 11, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full performance and interview

In this studio session singer, Jackie Ryan, gives us three of her favorites:  a gospel-tinged version of Accentuate The Positive, a beautiful reading of I Loves You, Porgy and the Spanish-language song, La Puerta, dedicated to her mother.

As you’ll hear Jackie  say in this interview, she grew up singing.  After years as a touring R&B singer, Jackie discovered jazz and never looked back.  Today, she’s one of America’s finest jazz singers. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
4:13 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Juan de Marcos and The Afro-Cuban All Stars: The Soul Of Cuba

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Juan de Marcos (center) and the Afro-Cuban All Stars performing live on KPLU from the KCTS 9 studios on Feburay 5, 2013. See more photos
Justin Steyer KPLU

Full performance and interview

On a recent visit to Seattle, Juan de Marcos and The Afro-Cuban All Stars stopped by for a three-song studio session with KPLU in the KCTS 9 studios.  How good was it? 

Well, as host, Abe Beeson says, “If this music doesn’t move you, you’ve got no place to go.”

Watch the full interview and performance:

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SUper Bowl
7:23 pm
Sun February 3, 2013

Ray Lewis goes out on top after second Super Bowl win

The Associated Press

Ray Lewis will ride into retirement as a champion.

Baltimore's standout middle linebacker began his final night on the football field with a motivational speech to his teammates. He ended it looking upward into a shower of silver streamers and purple confetti after the Ravens beat the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 Sunday night to win the Super Bowl.

Standing tall in the middle of a defense that survived a frenzied comeback by Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers, Lewis put a lovely bow on his 17th NFL season by earning his second Super Bowl ring — 12 years after the first.

KPLU Studio Sessions
4:57 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

The intimacy of the duo: Dee Dee Bridgewater and Benny Green

Dee Dee Bridgewater in the KPLU Seattle studios on January 22, 2013.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full performance and interview

Grammy award-winning jazz vocalist, Dee Dee Bridgewater almost always performs with a band accompanying her, while pianist Benny Green is generally heard in a trio configuration and seldom works with vocalists (with the notable exception of being Betty Carter’s pianist when he was in his 20’s). 

So this session was a double treat:  hearing two great musicians, both slightly out of their performance comfort zones, but totally in the moment with each other. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
10:49 am
Mon December 10, 2012

Graham Dechter: Youth steeped in tradition

Graham Dechter performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full performance & interview

Graham Dechter is a 26-year-old jazz guitarist who is, indeed, currently living his dream. 

Graham was invited to join the world-famous Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra at age 19. Now, 7 years later, he is leading his own group and just released his second CD, “Takin' It There.”  

Here is a video of the quartet performing the title track, "Takin' It There" live in our studios: 

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Jazz
9:01 am
Wed December 5, 2012

Jazz legend Dave Brubeck has died

Brubeck performing in Hamburg, Germany circa 1972.
Wikimedia Commons

Jazz icon Dave Brubeck has died this morning in a Connecticut hospital one day short of his 92nd birthday. 

Long-time manager-producer-conductor Russell Gloyd told The Chicago Tribune that Brubeck died of heart failure en route to "a regular treatment with his cardiologist." 

Brubeck attained pop-star status over the course of his long career with songs such as "Blue Rondo a la Turk" and "Take Five" (which easily secured the #1 spot on our Jazz 100 list).

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:30 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Bill Charlap solo piano: Tradition, invention and wit

Bill Charlap performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on October 24.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full interview and performance

It’s no wonder that pianist, Bill Charlap, loves the music that has come to be called The Great American Songbook—the songs of great Tin Pan Alley composers such as Jerome Kern, George Gershwin and Irving Berlin.  

He grew up with it. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:56 pm
Wed October 24, 2012

Catherine Russell: Keeping the family tradition alive

Catherine Russell performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Vocalist, Catherine Russell was raised in a musical family.  Her father, Luis, was Louis Armstrong’s band-leader and her mother, Carline Ray, was a member of the International Sweethearts Of Rhythm.

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10:54 am
Mon October 15, 2012

New York Times: Unique morning show on NPR thrives as others slip

Lead in text: 
NPR’s “Morning Edition” has one of the most peculiar formats of any morning show on radio or television: it’s split between the East Coast, with the co-host Steve Inskeep in Washington, and the West, with Ms. Montagne.
CULVER CITY, Calif. - Fifteen minutes before "Morning Edition" is beamed to radios across the country, Renee Montagne is ready to record her one-minute introduction. To cue her, the director points his index finger. "Good morning. It was the president's turn to court Latino voters..." And she's off.
KPLU Studio Sessions
8:00 am
Sat October 6, 2012

Curtis Stigers: Creating new jazz standards from contemporary

Curtis Stigers performing live in the KPLU Seattle Studios on September 11, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Curtis Stigers is a singer, songwriter, saxophonist who loves the great Tin Pan Alley songs of George Gershwin and Cole Porter, but finds a greater creative challenge in doing jazz versions of songs by more contemporary songwriters. 

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KPLU Studio Sessions
11:20 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Halie Loren: Putting Eugene, Ore. on the jazz map

Halie Loren performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on September 5, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Listen to the full interview & performance

In this studio session, hosted by Kevin Kniestedt, we’re pleased to introduce you to a woman who we believe is one of the finest up-and-coming international jazz talents to come along in years, Halie Loren. 

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It's The Fall Pledge Drive!
12:00 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Fall Fund Drive: 5 of your favorite studio sessions from the past year

The Fall Fund Drive is already half way over, and will end at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday. If you enjoy our studio sessions, and all of the programming you hear each day on KPLU, please show your support today and help us reach our goal of $400,000 in 4 days before time runs out!

Speaking of studio sessions, let's take a look back at the five most popular in-studio performances from the past year:

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KPLU Studio Sessions
12:34 pm
Thu September 27, 2012

Bela Fleck & Marcus Roberts Trio 'Crossing the Imaginary Divide'

The Marcus Roberts Trio and Bela Fleck perform in the KPLU Seattle studios earlier this month.
Justin Steyer KPLU

On a tour to promote their first collaboration, Crossing The Imaginary Divide, Bela Fleck and the Marcus Roberts Trio stopped by the KPLU Seattle studios for a live performance and interview, hosted by Mary McCann.  If you’re looking for music that will lift your heart, this is the session for you!

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KPLU Studio Sessions
2:07 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Cyrus Chestnut: Solo piano with ‘The Nutman’

Pianist Cyrus Chestnut performing live in the KPLU Seattle studios on August 28, 2012.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Pianist Cyrus Chestnut came onto the jazz scene slowly. From the mid-1980’s to mid-1990’s, he apprenticed as pianist for Jon Hendricks, Better Carter, Donald Harrison and Wynton Marsalis. Since then he has toured the world numerous times and recorded 15 albums as a leader.

KPLU Studio Sessions
10:45 am
Sun September 2, 2012

Bellingham vocalist Cheryl Jewell: Coming home to jazz

Vocalist Cheryl Jewell performing live in the KPLU Seattle Studios on August 2.
Justin Steyer KPLU

Bellingham jazz singer, Cheryl Jewell, was raised in Oak Harbor, Washington.  When she went to college in Bellingham, she fell in love with that city.  She left only to pursue her singing career in Chicago, Detroit and Los Angeles. 

After working for several years as a rock and country singer, Cheryl decided to move back to Bellingham and pursue her first musical love—jazz.  With the release of her first jazz CD, My Blue Heaven, Cheryl has placed herself on the top shelf of West Coast jazz singers. 

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