If Laila Biali is not on the radio, there's a good chance she's listening to it. And if she's not in the audience at her favourite music venue, Koerner Hall, she might be on its stage. We asked the jazz chanteuse, podcast enthusiast and host of CBC Radio's Saturday Night Jazz about her current fixations.
What she's watching: "I'm super into the CBS legal/political series The Good Wife. I'm currently in the third season of the seven that it ran. At first, I didn't find all the characters convincing: They seemed more like caricatures. But, like some of the best things in life, the more time I spent with them, the more I was drawn in, compelled by each person's story development. I also love all the legal banter!"
What she's tuned into: "I'm a podcast junkie. For news, I love The Current, As It Happens and BBC's Global News Podcast. For more narrative material, The Moth, This American Life, Radiolab and Selected Shorts. For interviews and editorials, NPR's Fresh Air and WNYC's On the Media. For fun facts, Wow in the World – I listen with my seven-year-old son – and Stuff You Should Know."
What she recently enjoyed: "I had the chance to hear the great jazz artist Gregory Porter live at Koerner Hall this summer. I've performed there with my own group, and I really feel it's one of our city's gems. Its gorgeous acoustics and grandeur place it among the best concert halls in the world, and yet performers and listeners experience a special intimacy within the space – a very rare combination. I highly recommend checking out what Koerner Hall and its partner, the Royal Conservatory of Music, have going on this season."
Laila Biali's fall tour (Oct. 18 to Nov. 26) includes an appearance at Humber at 50: A Celebration Through Music on Nov. 8, 8 p.m., $25 to $175, Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor St. W., 416-408-0208 or rcmusic.com.