Deborah DeMoss Smith

A former Louisianan, Deborah DeMoss Smith knows about gumbo and a spicy interview. In fact, with a background in writing, TV news, radio hosting, and the author of two books, one of her greatest joys is interviewing. But don’t expect trite questions. Instead, Deborah likes to stir the pot with quirky queries. “One of the best ways,” she says, “to have fun and to learn something about someone is to ask unconventional questions. Recently I asked a jazz pianist, Are you a dancer’? He said he’d never been asked that before and he DID like to dance; he’d even competed! ” Deborah also has an affinity for early morning runs, yoga, movies, live jazz, and cooking supper for family and friends — especially gumbo.

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Recent Articles

Notations with Javon Jackson

KMHD Jazz Radio | March 9, 2015 4:08 p.m.

Music | Arts

Notations with Calle Centenario

KMHD Jazz Radio | Feb. 10, 2015 12:53 p.m.

Music | Arts

Notations with Jacky Terrasson

KMHD Jazz Radio | Jan. 7, 2015 10:18 a.m.

Music | NW Life | Arts

Notations from Javier Nero

KMHD Jazz Radio | Dec. 8, 2014 4:21 p.m.

Notations from Grace Kelly

KMHD Jazz Radio | Nov. 10, 2014 12:47 p.m.


Notations with Rebecca Hardiman

KMHD Jazz Radio | Oct. 2, 2014 3:45 p.m.


Notations from Harold Mabern

KMHD Jazz Radio | Sept. 8, 2014 2:55 p.m.

Pianist Harold Mabern has played with such notables as Lee Morgan, Hank Mobley, Freddie Hubbard and Miles Davis; but it's his own music that continues to garner acclaim.

Music | Arts

Notations from Essiet Essiet

KMHD Jazz Radio | Aug. 12, 2014 2:13 p.m.

Bassist Essiet Essiet says he's often questioned not only about jazz but about his name. Given to the first born son, the double name is a tradition in Nigeria, his family's homeland. The acclaimed artist offers more on his background and his affinity for jazz.

Notations with Steve Montecucco and Luke Nerton

KMHD Jazz Radio | July 3, 2014 5:12 p.m.

Young jazz musicians may have yet to make their mark, but they still have plenty of interesting things to share. Recently, I heard the award-winning Battle Ground High School Advanced Jazz Combo play. Afterward, I spoke to 16-year-old sophomore Steve Montecucco, trumpeter, and 18-year-old graduating senior Luke Nerton, drummer.

Music | NW Life

Notations from Steve Christofferson

KMHD Jazz Radio | June 9, 2014 1:02 p.m.

Jazz pianist Steve Christofferson says he was in elementary school when he discovered his parents’ LP jazz collection.  Long an accompanist for singers (think Nancy King), he’s just at home with his own music. Recently, we chatted about his guitar-influenced playing and his desire not to be too polished.

Music | Arts

Notations with Cindy Blackman Santana

KMHD Jazz Radio | May 7, 2014 12:05 p.m.

Click the link to learn more about the incredible life of jazz drummer, Cindy Blackman Santana.

Music | Arts

Notations with Dave Frishberg

OPB | April 9, 2014 2:25 p.m.

Deborah DeMoss Smith recently spoke with veteran jazz pianist, composer, and arranger, Dave Frishberg. Incidentally, Frishberg is also a resident of Portland.

Music | Arts

Notations from Chris Brown

KMHD Jazz Radio | March 3, 2014 1:41 p.m.

An interview with drummer and saxophonist, Chris Brown.

Music | Arts

Notations with Louis Hayes

KMHD Jazz Radio | Feb. 11, 2014 1:56 p.m.

Ever wonder where Hayes acquired his appetite for jazz? Or which artists Hayes admires most? Join Deborah DeMoss Smith for a glimpse into the jazz-soul of Louis Hayes.

Music | local

Notations From Bassist Ed Bennett

OPB | Jan. 8, 2014 midnight

The Portland bassist talks about how he feels when he's performing, his love of Brazilian music and why he's a "green player."

Music | local

Notations From Jazz Drummer Micah Kassell

OPB | Dec. 11, 2013 midnight

Native Oregonian and drummer Micah Kassell talks about jazz, performing and dance classes. Plus, he talks about what music he likes besides jazz.

Music | local

Notations From Logan Thane Brown

OPB | Nov. 13, 2013 midnight

Trumpeter Logan Brown builds instruments for Monette Trumpets and plays in the Portland second line band the BrassRoots Movement.

Music | local

Notations From Jazz Saxophonist Renato Caranto

OPB | Oct. 8, 2013 midnight

The Portland musician talks about his experiences growing up in the Philippines, what it's like to tour with Esperanza Spalding and how to speak the language of jazz.

Music | local

Notations From Stan Bock

OPB | Sept. 11, 2013 midnight | Portland

Trombonist Stan Bock talks about his jazz experiences and the joy of playing.

Music | local

Five Questions for Dee Settlemier

OPB | Aug. 12, 2013 5 a.m.

Jazz singer and ukulele player Dee Settlemier talks about performing with The Libertine Belles and which early jazz singer she'd love to meet.