..."a lifelong scholar of Africa, (Randy Weston's) playing has always had a ring of the ancient in it; his percussive, resounding bass-clef chords are among the great pleasures in jazz piano." Ben Ratliff, The New York Times
On Saturday, November 13 at 8PM, BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center will present Randy Weston's Uhuru Afrika 50th Anniversary Concert Celebration, a special performance of the landmark recording Uhuru Afrika, a spectacular four-part suite composed by Weston, and arranged by his long- time collaborator Melba Liston, with lyrics by the great Harlem Renaissance poet, Langston Hughes. The NEA Jazz Master, pianist-composer will be joined by a 22-piece orchestra featuring a number of jazz greats including Candido Camero (percussion) and Charlie Persip (drums), who played on the original recording.
Dubbed Africa's Year of Freedom," 1960 ushered in a wave of self-governance on the continent as 17 nations: Cameroon, Togo, Mali, Senegal, Madagascar, Congo, Somalia, Benin, Niger, Burkina Faso, Cte d'Ivoire, Chad, Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon, Nigeria, and Mauritania, fought and secured their independence from European colonial powers. Randy Weston contributed the landmark opus Uhuru Afrika to the political and cultural landscape of that time.
This special concert is not only a celebration of this historic album, but also a tribute to the entire continent of Africaa sentiment underscored by Weston's chosen title, Uhuru Afrika, which is Kiswahili for Freedom Africa."
On November 9, Weston will release a new live album with his African Rhythms sextet, The Storyteller: Live At Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, his debut for Motma Music. Recorded live at Jazz at Lincoln Center's Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, the set features drummer Lewis Nash with members of Weston's regular quintet: the late trombonist Benny Powell; alto saxophonist TK Blue; bassist Alex Blake; and percussionist Neil Clarke. The Storyteller is a musical companion to Weston's highly anticipated memoir, African Rhythms: The Autobiography of Randy Weston, a collaboration with Willard Jenkins and published by Duke University Press (also available November 9).
Randy Weston's Uhuru Afrika 50th Anniversary Concert Celebration
Saturday, November 13 at 8PM
BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center
199 Chambers Street
New York, NY 10007
Ticket prices: $25, $35 & $45 (students and seniors save $10)
Randy Weston's Orchestra:
Vincent Chauncey (French horn)
Ron Jackson (guitar)
Charlie Persip (drums)
Eddie Henderson, Eddie Allen and Cecil Bridgewater (trumpets)
Craig Harris, Bob Trowers and Barry Cooper (trombones)
Alex Blake and Essiet Essiet (basses)
T.K. Blue, James Spalding, Billy Harper, Alex Harding, Billy Saxton (saxophones)
Candido Camero, Ray Mantilla, Roland Guerrero, Kwaku Obeng, Neil Clarke (percussion)
Jann Parker and Gregory Porter (vocals)
Paul West (conductor)
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