Williams Scholarship Jazz Festival
Swings For Education
For the past thirteen years Tony Williams
and the Mt Airy Cultural Center have sponsored, organized and
promoted a Jazz Festival to raise scholarship money to assist
students in continuing their post secondary education. What they
call a Scholarship Jazz Festival is really a laid back
smorgasbord of musical genius and talent and a fun filled Labor
Day Weekend package rolled into one.
Each Labor Day weekend jazz afficionados
from up and down the East Coast and beyond converge on the
Cherry Hill Hilton in Cherry Hill New Jersey to partake of a
weekend of music, camaraderie and fellowship. While the purpose
of the festival is to raise funds for scholarships, expose jazz
lovers to up and coming artists, provide exposure for local and
regional favorites as well as showcase the established masters,
it really takes on a more serious albeit fun filled mission, to
preserve the genre of music known as Jazz, continue and build
upon that legacy.
The Tony Williams Scholarship Jazz Festival
debuts young talent and student musicians, and brings in some of
the greatest musicians in the world to play before appreciative
audiences of knowledgeable fans. While the festival is
intergenerational because it is organized by mature and
culturally conscious volunteers, it is one of the most senior
friendly venues in existence.
Folks come from all over just to soak up
the good social vibes and great music while contributing to a
worthy cause. Because Tony Williams is an educator, the festival
also offers workshops and teaching/learning sessions led by
world famous musicians where teenagers can sit at the feet of
people like John Blake and learn about the tradition of jazz and
glean tips on how to be a better musician.
This year’s itinerary included the Mt
Airy Cultural Center Student Faculty Band, the Intermezzo Choir
of Ministry, the Jeannie Brooks Ensemble, the Bootsie Barnes
Quintet, Pieces of A Dream and a midnight jam session featuring
Phil Wright Cecil McBee, Walter Clark, Larry Mc Kenna, Tommy
Grice and Tony Williams and that was just the Friday main stage
There was continuous live jazz in the
lineup featured youth workshops, the Intermezzo Choir Ministry,
the Denise King Ensemble, a Violin Summit featuring John Blake,
Iorg Widmoser from Germany, and 97-year-old sensation Claude
Williams and the fabulous Heath Brothers Percy, Jimmy, and
Albert “Tootie” Heath plus one.
Sunday featured a soulful ecumenical
service led by Rev. Mattie Pinkney featuring the Central State
University Chorus which is always a favorite. Following the
ecumenical service there was a musicians reunion jam session.
The Chris Lowery Quintet performed in
the main ballroom. In the afternoon the Mt Airy Cultural
Center held its Awards Ceremony followed by the Ronnie
Waters Quintet and The Trio featuring Kenny Barron,
Buster Williams, and Mikey Roker. To cap the night off,
the Joe Sudler Big Band provided dance music.
Monday the beat continued with a Jazz
Breakfast that was followed by the Tia Fuller Quartet, an all-female
ensemble. The Terell Stafford Quartet provided the afternoon
entertainment, which was followed by a pool side jam featuring
the Rob Henderson Ensemble. In addition to the outstanding line up of
musicians, the festival also paid tribute to
Percy Heath. Heath is one of the talented Heath
brothers -- Jimmy a saxophonist and Albert a
drummer each a master in their own right. Percy Heath is
also the sole remaining member of the legendary Modern
Tony Williams presents Percy Heath with the Mt Airy
Cultural Center's Achievement Award.
When the Heath brothers performed together
and it was obvious they were having as much fun working together
as the audience was listening and jamming to their music.
At the conclusion of
their set Tony Williams presented Percy with an
achievement and dedication award from the Mt Airy
Cultural Center. The festival offers an all inclusive
package for the entertainment as well as single set
tickets. Vendors were on hand selling a myriad of high
quality products, clothing and memorabilia.
offers something for everyone. Next year if you are
looking for a place to be during the Labor Day Weekend
and you want to experience lovely ambiance, great jazz
and camaraderie make plans to attend the 14th
annual Tony Williams Scholarship Jazz Festival.
Photos: Junious R.
Greenback Planet: How the Dollar Conquered
the World and Threatened Civilization as We Know It
By H. W. Brands
In Greenback Planet, acclaimed historian H. W. Brands charts the dollar's astonishing rise to become the world's principal currency. Telling the story with the verve of a novelist, he recounts key episodes in U.S. monetary history, from the Civil War debate over fiat money (greenbacks) to the recent worldwide financial crisis. Brands explores the dollar's changing relations to gold and silver and to other currencies and cogently explains how America's economic might made the dollar the fundamental standard of value in world finance. He vividly describes the 1869 Black Friday attempt to corner the gold market, banker J. P. Morgan's bailout of the U.S. treasury, the creation of the Federal Reserve, and President Franklin Roosevelt's handling of the bank panic of 1933. Brands shows how lessons learned (and not learned) in the Great Depression have influenced subsequent U.S. monetary policy, and how the dollar's dominance helped transform economies in countries ranging from Germany and Japan after World War II to Russia and China today. He concludes with a sobering dissection of the 2008 world financial debacle, which exposed the power--and the enormous risks--of the dollar's worldwide reign. The Economy
* * *
Sex at the Margins
Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry
By Laura María Agustín
This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label 'trafficked' does not accurately describe migrants' lives and that the 'rescue industry' serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice. "Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality."—Lisa Adkins, University of London
* * *
(Books, DVDs, Music, and more)
18 February 2012