Mon | May 27, 2024

Jamaica to celebrate International Jazz Day with free concert

Published:Wednesday | April 24, 2024 | 12:10 AM
Keisha Patterson
Keisha Patterson
Curtis Lundy
Curtis Lundy

The Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and the Jamaica Music Museum (JaMM) will, on April 30, present International Jazz Day Jamaica, a concert celebrating the day and marking Jamaica’s contribution.

International Jazz Day is listed on the UNESCO calendar. It was declared in 2011, with jazz luminary Herbie Hancock as its ambassador, “to highlight jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the globe”.

In 2015, Kingston was declared a UNESCO Creative City of Music, and since then, Jamaica has been celebrating International Jazz Day.

The International Jazz Day Jamaica concert will feature the acclaimed American Curtis Lundy Quintet, the JaMM Orchestra, vocalist Keisha Patterson, and the Dr Kathy Brown Trio. Curated by Herbie Miller, the director and curator of JaMM, the event will also observe the Institute of Jamaica’s commemoration of its 145th anniversary.

Lundy is a double bass player, composer, producer, choir director, and arranger who has recorded as a leader and is also an in-demand sideman for recordings and live performances. For more than 40 years, he has recorded and performed with many legendary musicians, including the esteemed vocalist Betty Carter. As a sideman, he has worked with jazz masters Clark Terry, Johnny Griffin, John Hicks, and Pharoah Sanders and performed with Chico Freeman, Mark Murphy and his sister, the acclaimed vocalist Carmen Lundy. Lundy’s Walk With Me arrangement, recorded by the ARC Gospel Choir, was sampled by rapper Kanye West and was the Grammy Award-winning hit Jesus Walks. In addition to his other ensembles, he co-leads the Curtis Lundy-Bobby Watson Quintet.

Led by its outstanding pianist and musical director, Ozou’ne Sunduyah, the JaMM Orchestra will perform a combination of compositions by Jamaican jazz musicians, including Carlos Malcolm and Don Drummond and pieces associated with Duke Ellington, Thad Jones and others. Keisha Patterson will lead a trio with Canadian guest saxophonist Richard ‘I-Sax’ Howse, and Dr Kathy Brown will front her trio.

Vendors offering an eclectic assortment of arts, crafts, food, and beverages from the popular cultural Kingston Night Market will add to the creativity and festive spirit. MC Elaine Wint will add her profound understanding of jazz, its democratic principles, and freedom ethic to the concert.

Miller, said, “It’s my delight to be involved in staging this event. Jazz has a democratic code, an independent ethic whose aesthetic reflects the complete range of the human experience. It’s a liberating power steeped in the principles of freedom.”

The concert, free to the public, will be held at the Louise Bennett Garden Theatre, will start at 7:30 p.m.