Any thought that the Harlem memorial service for Dr. Billy Taylor would be a somber, mournful affair was dispelled after the opening prayers at Riverside Church of New York. First, Reverend Calvin O. Butts (from the nearby Abyssinian Baptist Church) delivered the evening's gathering prayer; then, he said, One of the things I never got to do in this church or for this great man, Billy Taylor, was to ask the whole congregation to stand up and give this man the ovation he deserves." The cheers and thunderous applause from the packed house set the tone for the proceedings: This would be a celebration of Taylor's warmth, his humor, and his music. Complete story from washingtoncitypaper.com.
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