Date: Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2007 Time: 4 pm - 8 pm Event: The September Concert - The Heart of Jazz, Antoinette Montague, host Location: Creole Restaurant & Jazz Club 2167 Third Avenue corner of 3rd & East 118th Street, NYC 212-876-8838
Admission: FREE to the Public!
Antoinette Montague will be the host of The September Concert: The Heart of Jazz, at Creole Restaurant & Jazz Club, one event in a free, citywide concert series that seeks each year to respond to the attacks of 9/11 by filling the skies with music.
Begun in 2002, The September Concert is a non-profit organization, that commemorates the horror visited upon NYC on September 11, 2001 by placing free music from every genre from classical to hip-hop in parks, shops, cafes, office buildings, clubs and restaurants across NY's five boroughs--utilizing the full healing properties of music both to honor those we've lost and to celebrate life and our shared humanity.
In six years, TSC has grown from a few hundred performers in a few venues in NYC, to over 3,400 artists performing in over 250 locales worldwide, attracting greater recognition with each year.
TSC's jazz component, The Heart of Jazz, was added in 2005. TSC offers each venue the opportunity to participate in this event musically as they see fit. Each venue is encouraged to imagine its own event, with as many or as few participants as they wish. In addition to Creole, locations for TSC: Heart of Jazz events include Ashford & Simpson's Sugar Bar, Greenwich Village Bistro, The 5C Cafe and The New School Jazz Program.
There are no rules save one: All September Concert events are free concerts. No admission or cover may be charged at any SC event. This one is from the heart--a gift of our music for, and to, our fellow New Yorkers.
She has a powerful voice, the ability to hold long notes without wavering, and a knack for making every song sound bluesy. Antoinette Montague's delivery is heartfelt, infectious and memorable." - Scott Yanow, Los Angeles Jazz Scene
Born and raised in Newark, Antoinette Montague's debut CD, Pretty Blues on the Consolidated Artists label raised her profile and has given her fame beyond the East Coast. She was selected this year as a cover artist on the international Who's Who in Jazz, Cabaret Music & Entertainment, Vol. IV and was a featured artist at the 2007 Exodus to Jazz Festival in Rochester, NY.
She's worked in gospel and R&B ensembles after college, serves as the vice president of the International Women in Jazz, and considers Carrie Smith, Etta Jones, Della Griffin and Myrna Lake to be her mentors. Antoinette has worked extensively in the New York area during the past decade with such musicians as Red Holloway, Benny Powell, Bill Easley, Winard Harper, Wycliffe Gordon, Frank Wess, the Duke Ellington Orchestra and Mike Longo's New York State of the Arts Orchestra.
Blues originally came out of the moaning and spirituals first heard in the work fields, but then soon heard in churches and honky-tonks as well. The more life-dues you pay, the better you can sing the blues, no matter what your heritage or whether you are rich or poor. The blues have to be honest. Everyone can relate to the blues because we all have had trouble sometime in our life. Singing the blues looks so easy, but I found out it's not. You need a little soulful heartache, some suffering and then a dab of grease to make it slide along. The blues reflect the lifeblood and the spirit. The blues are a great release for me, but also a healing experience," explains Antoinette.
Where the blues are a basic part of life, an almost primeval experience, jazz is an elevated art form. Jazz follows a rich artistic path of high caliber. Where blues is the solid foundation for so much other music, jazz goes its own way. Jazz is infinite in possibilities. The greatest jazz comes out when the musicians exchange ideas. Jazz combines lofty thought with spontaneous improvisation. That's why I love the idea of combining the best of jazz and blues whenever possible. They compliment and balance each other."
Antoinette was mentored by some great singers - Carrie Smith ("She inspired me to have a big voice onstage"), Etta Jones ("She could transport the audience"), Della Griffin ("She showed me laid-back phrasing and how to use the comic side of my personality") and Myrna Lake ("She let me sub for her and that's when I learned to lead a band through three sets a night"). In addition, Montague has performed onstage with many top jazz and blues musicians including Red Holloway, Benny Powell, Earl May, Winnard Harper, Wycliff Gordon, Stan Hope, John DiMartino, Bernard Purdy, Victor Jones, Tootsie Bean, Zeek Mullins, Paul Bollenbeck, Frank West and numerous others.