Wednesday, September 9, 2009

ASCAP to Co-Sponsor 39th Annual Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Jazz Concert


Congressman John Conyers, Jr., Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and Dean of the Congressional Black Caucus, will host the 24th Annual Jazz Issue Forum and Concert during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 39th Annual Legislative Conference, September 23-26, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, 801 Mount Vernon Place, NW, Washington, DC 20001.

The Jazz Issue Forum and Concert will take place on Thursday, September 24th, from 7:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. in Ballroom A of the Convention Center. The Jazz Forum and Concert are both free and open to the public. The American Society of Composers, Authors & Publishers (ASCAP), CENTRIC (formerly BET Networks), Dish Network, and the Western Union Company are the sponsors of this year's event. Additional support for artist transportation has been provided by the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation.

On June 15, 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama hosted 150 students at the White House for what the Washington Post termed “the most exclusive jazz workshop this city has ever seen.” This year’s Jazz Issue Forum, entitled “The First Lady’s Jazz Initiative – Taking it to the Grass Roots,” will explore how to extend that kind of jazz education opportunity to culturally underserved communities. This is a logical extension of the last two Jazz Issue Forums which examined how to advance jazz appreciation and education in the African American Community. The Forum’s panelists will be Dr. Larry Ridley, representing the African American Jazz Caucus; Jackie Harris, representing the Louis Armstrong Jazz Camp; Wayne Brown, the National Endowment for the Arts' (NEA) Director of Music & Opera; and Warren Shadd, CEO of Shadd Pianos Inc. Willard Jenkins of Open Sky Jazz will serve as moderator. The Forum will be broadcast live on WPFW - 89.3 FM.

The Jazz Concert will follow the Forum. Opening will be the Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong Summer Jazz Camp Alumni All-Stars, featuring drummer and ASCAP member Herlin Riley, artist in residence. The other members of this group are Courtney Bryan, piano; Brian Quezerque, bass; Calvin Johnson, tenor saxophone, Gregory Agid, clarinet; and Troy Andrews, trombone. Kent Jordan, flutist and Band Director. Edward Kidd Jordan, Artistic Director and saxophonist, will also participate in the opening portion of the musical program. The Armstrong Summer Jazz Camp is one of many music education programs receiving support from The ASCAP Foundation.

Headlining the Concert will be “Remembering the Miles Davis Classic Kind of Blue @ 50 – Jimmy Cobb’s So What Band.” 2009 marks the 50th anniversary of the original release date of Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue. The album was released in August 1959. Kind of Blue is universally considered to be one of the best albums of all time, of any genre. Fifty years later, it is still the best selling jazz album ever. Legendary jazz drummer Jimmy Cobb (drummer on the Kind of Blue album) leads an all-star band featuring Larry Willis, piano; Buster Williams, bass; Wallace Roney, trumpet; Javon Jackson, tenor saxophone; and Vincent Herring, alto saxophone. ASCAP member Jimmy Cobb, a Washington DC native and 2009 NEA Jazz Master, is the only surviving member of the artists who performed on the groundbreaking Kind of Blue recording.

Overall, the CBC Jazz package offers a dynamic combination of information and straight ahead jazz from a collection of educators and superb artists that will remind everyone why jazz is truly a “national treasure.”

Established in 1914, ASCAP is the first and leading U.S. Performing Rights Organization (PRO) representing the world's largest repertory totaling over 8.5 million copyrighted musical works of every style and genre from more than 350,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members. ASCAP has representation arrangements with similar foreign organizations so that the ASCAP repertory is represented in nearly every country around the world where copyright law exists. ASCAP protects the rights of its members and foreign affiliates by licensing the public performances of their copyrighted works and distributing royalties based upon surveyed performances. ASCAP is the only American PRO owned and governed by its writer and publisher members.

No comments: