March 2011

March 23, 2011

Turkish Embassy partners with JALC for Ertegün Jazz Series

In late Janary, the Embassy of Turkey was joined by representatives from Jazz at Lincoln Center and the Boeing Company to announce their partnership in the “Ertegün Jazz Series,” a six concert series created in honor of the late Ahmet Ertegün, founder of Atlantic Records, member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Board of Directors, son of the second Turkish Ambassador to the United States, and staunch music advocate. The invitation-only concert series will be curated by Jazz at Lincoln Center and sponsored by the Boeing Company. The first concert, featuring Grammy nominated pianist Orrin Evans, is scheduled for March 1, 2011. Pianist Helen Sung performs with her quartet on April 12, 2011.

During their father’s tenure as the Turkish Ambassador (1934-1944), Ahmet and his older brother Nesuhi hosted jam sessions in the music room of the Turkish Embassy Residence the same site that will host the Ertegün Jazz Series more than seventy years later. Current Turkish Ambassador Namik Tan stated, “Nesuhi and Ahmet Ertegün established deep roots with the jazz community of Washington, DC. Though Washington was segregated at that time the Ertegün brothers brought cultures together with one common objective, celebrating music.”

Harlem Jazz Shrines

This spring a new jazz festival “Harlem Jazz Shrines” will shine the light on local talent, as well as Harlem’s historic clubs and venues.

Jazzmobile, Harlem Stage and The Apollo Theater are presenting “The Harlem Jazz Shrines festival” May 9th through the 15th with a lineup of talent at historic Harlem locations including the Apollo.

The festival takes place at seven locations with dozens of different performers. The cost of admission is $10 for every single event. For more information visit

Cape Town Intl. Jazz Fest Lineup Announced

Producers ESP Afrika recently announced during the festival’s launch in Rosebank, north of Johannesburg, that DSTV’s Mzansi Magic had been secured as the broadcaster of the March 25 and 26 festival in the mother city.

South African Tourism’s Jermaine Craig said the festival “has earned its stripes” and compared it to other international festivals like the New Orleans Jazz, Heritage Festival and the Montreux Jazz Festival.

The launch was attended by artists like legendary trumpeter Hugh Masekela, singers Naima McLean, Simphiwe Dana, Tumi Molekane from Hip-hop band Tumi and the Volume and Botswana’s Citie, who will all perform.

Other performers confirmed for the festival include Christian Scott (USA), Hanjin (China), Lisa Bauer, Dave Koz (USA), Gang of Instrumentals, Patricia Barber (USA), Ivan Mazuze (Mozambique/South Africa), Monique Bingham (USA), Sandra Cordeiro (Angola), Esperanza Spalding (USA), Youssou N’Dour (Senegal), Earth Wind Fire (USA), Don Laka, Bebe Winans (USA), Feya Faku, Tortured Soul and Cindy Blackman (USA).

The Jazz 100 has released their list of “One Hundred Quintessential Jazz Songs,” as chosen by listeners and staff. To view and comment on the results, visit

Spalding on Bieber, Grammy Win…

At this year’s Grammy awards, former JAZZed cover subeject Esperanza Spalding shocked most by beating pop star Justin Bieber in the category of Best New Artist.

In the immediate aftermath, everyone not familiar with one of jazz’ brightest young talents was online, trying to figure out who Esperanza Spalding was: the next morning, her name was the top search on Google.

Spalding told CBS’ “Early Show” co-anchor Erica Hill in early March, “For a split second, I thought maybe [the award presenter] was kidding. I thought it was a joke. I was just totally shocked. Nobody really expected that. We were, like ‘What?’ And then, excited, of course.”

As to whether it’s all sunk in yet, Spalding said, “I think so. I mean, I don’t know what it is yet, exactly. I’ve never been there before. But you know, we’re doing our daily sort of playing, practicing, touring, and my mind is more focused on that. Every once in awhile, someone goes ‘What does it feel like?’ and I’m like, ‘Oh, yeah, I don’t know, I hadn’t thought about it. Yeah. It’s great.”‘

As for Bieber? Spalding said, “He was very gracious, and we met right after the show and exchanged hair touches. He was very sweet and gracious and he didn’t seem upset. Very kind young man.”

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