Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jazz Treasures: Legacy, Legend & Heritage

Jazz Treasures: Legacy, Legend & Heritage Awards Ceremony: May 11 @ Schomburg Center For Research, New York, NY

To commemorate the 10th Anniversary of their Jazz In The Valley concerts, Transart & Cultural Services decided to celebrate the excellence of those in the field of jazz. The inaugural Jazz Treasures: Legacy, Legend & Heritage award ceremony took place Tuesday night in front of a who's who of artists, educators and pioneers, honoring those who do their thing in the field be it on-stage or behind the scenes.

The honorees ...

Jonathan Batiste, the 23 year old pianist from New Orleans, received the Jazz Heritage Award. Before being presented his award by Noor Rahman, he gave us a performance that showed why he's a cat to keep an eye on.

Jonathan Batiste

Carolyn McClair, the PR maven who hates the spotlight but is brilliant at making it shine bright on others, was presented the Cultural Luminary Award by WBGO's Dorthaan Kirk. McClair who works tirelessly providing clients with hands-on, personalized campaigns not only in jazz and entertainment but, corporate, non-profit and other industries as well. We (that would be me since I'm a one woman show) at Quirky NY Chick are exceptionally proud; during regular business hours we like to call this terrific woman, boss. Congratulations boss lady!

Dorthaan Kirk and Carolyn McClair

Carolyn McClair with Transart President and Founder Greer Smith

Les McCann, the feisty pianist and singer was presented with the Jazz Legend Award by pianist Randy Weston. After being presented with his award, he showed exactly why he's called a legend. McCann brought down the house, strong voiced, full of wit and charm with his classic "Compared To What." It was a performance that had those in attendance singing along and a treat to witness.

Les McCann

The evening's MC Sharif Abdus Salaam (WKCR-FM) and Randy Weston

The evening also brought about a Tribute to Abbey Lincoln. After a career retrospective video presentation to the legendary singer, songwriter and actress, she was honored in a musical tribute. The Javon Jackson Band (who also backed McCann during his performance) with Aaron Graves on piano led Melba Joyce and Jann Parker through a song each.

Melba Joyce w/Javon Jackson Band

Jann Parker w/Javon Jackson Band

Congratulations to all!

Jazz lovers, this year's Jazz In The Valley will take place on August 15. Sounds like the perfect reason to have yourself a little road trip.