May 2009  Volume 1   Issue 1                                                                        

2009 AAJC HBCU Student All-star Band

2009 African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. Historically Black Colleges and Universities Student All-star Big Band performance at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York Public Library, Sunday, February 1, 2009.

Saxophones - Frank H. Hayes, II, Clark Atlanta University, Jasen Thompson, Fayetteville State University,  Benjamin Courtland Saxon, Jackson State University, Omar S. Cherry, Florida A & M University, Jordan Kane, North Carolina Central University
Trumpets - Damien Emilien, Jackson State University, Kyle Mills, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Steven Moore, North Carolina A & T University, Quinton Parker, North Carolina Central University, Jonah Vincent, North Carolina Central University, Michael Williams, Florida A & M University
Trombones - Virgil Boysaw III, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Jose Loredo, Texas Southern University, Reginald Greenlee, North Carolina Central University, Willie C. Noel, Jr., Huston - Tillotson University, David Taylor, Clark Atlanta University
Rhythm Section - Philip M. Adair, piano, Huston - Tillotson University, Marc Davis, guitar, North Carolina Central University, Maria Montgomery, string bass, Clark Atlanta University, Steven Maben, drums, Jackson State University
Photograph by Jim Alexander
Message from Dr. Larry Ridley
Meet Rev. Dr. Ronald Myers
Meet Jim Alexander
Meet Dr. Will Smith
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AAJC Photo Gallery
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Prof. David Hardiman and the AAJC Dance Band at the 2008 IAJE Conference in Toronto, Canada
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AAJC Vocal Committee with AAJC Dance Band Director, Prof. David Hardiman and AAJC Executive Director, Dr. Larry Ridley at the 2008 IAJE Conference 
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AAJC Dance Band Director, Prof. David Hardiman during rehearsal at 2008 IAJE Conference in Toronto, Canada
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Top row from left to right: Dr. John Lamkin, University of Maryland Eastern Shore; Prof. Robert Trowers, North Carolina Central University; Prof. James Patterson, Clark Atlanta University; Dr. Howard Harris, Texas Southern University; Prof. James Holden, Virginia State University; Bottom row from left to right: Dr. Larry Ridley, Dr. Russell Thomas, Jackson State University; Jimmy Owens,The New School; Seated: NEA Jazz Master Frank Foster 
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From left to right: AAJC Executive Director, Dr. Larry Ridley, Prof. Larry Dwyer, AAJC Board Member and Director of Bands, University of Notre Dame, Frank Foster and Dr. Russell Thomas, AAJC Band Directors Committee, Chairman at AAJC HBCU Student All-star Big Band performance, 2008 IAJE Conference, Toronto, Canada
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National Endowment for the Arts  (NEA) Jazz Master, Frank Foster and Mondre Moffet, Director of Jazz Ensembles at North Carolina A & T, during the AAJC HBCU Student All-star Big Band performance at the 2008 IAJE Conference
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Ms. Patricia R. Deans, Founder and Director of the Brownsville Heritage House, Brooklyn, New York receiving the National Juneteenth Leadership Award at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
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Durham Mayor Bill Bell and Dr. Larry Ridley at the opening reception of the 2007 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference at North Carolina Central University in Durham, NC
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Left to right: Dr. Larry Ridley, Kenny Barron and Dr. Ira Wiggins, Director of Jazz Studies, North Carolina Central University  at the 2007 NAJRI Conference in Durham, NC
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Left to right: Dr. James Ammons, former NCCU Chancellor and current President of Florida A & M University with Mona and Jimmy Heath at the 2006 AAJC HBCU Student All-star Big Band concert at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York City
 AAJC HBCU Student All-star Big Band Alumni
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From left to right: Anthony Brown, Ricardo James, Serena Wiley, Steven Moore, Marcus Anderson
Marion Ross
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Justin Martin
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Tamahl Gorham
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Marc Davis                                  Eric Dawson  
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AAJC President, Keith McKinley, Esq. 
From left to right: Dr. Willis Kirk, President Emeritus, San Francisco City College, NEA Jazz Master, Jimmy Heath, Prof. James Patterson, Clark Atlanta University
From left to right: NEA Jazz Master, Dr. Billy Taylor, Dr. Paula Harrell, NCCU Music Department Chair, Dr. Jesse McCarroll, New York City College of Technology (CUNY) and AAJC Treasurer, Kim Taylor, Dr. Taylor's daughter
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Instructor and vocalist, Lenora Helm,  Prof. James Patterson, Prof. Mondre Moffet, Doug Harris
From left to right: Dr. Howard Harris, Texas Southern University, renowned saxophonist Branford Marsalis, Dr. Larry Ridley, Prof. James Patterson, Clark Atlanta University
From left to right: Dr. Billy Taylor, renowned jazz vocalist Nnenna Freelon,  Dr. Paula Harrell, Dr. Ira Wiggins at the 2008 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference opening reception

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From left to right: Branford Marsalis, Dr. Billy Taylor and Lenora Helm
Dan Morgenstern, Director, Rutgers Institute of Jazz Studies accepting NAJRI Jazz Hall of Fame trophy on behalf of Tal Farlow presented by Ken Grady, WNCU - FM
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Albert "Tootie" Heath as he is inducted into the NAJRI Jazz Hall of Fame by vocalist Lois Deloatch, Associate Director, Corporate and Foundations Relations, Duke University, at the 2008 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference
Dr. Billy Taylor as he is inducted into the NAJRI Jazz Hall of Fame by Nnenna Freelon during the 2008 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference
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NAJRI Jazz Hall of Fame inductees, Jimmy and Albert "Tootie" Heath at  2008 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference opening reception 
David "Fathead" Newman at the 2008 NAJRI Jazz Education Conference/Festival in Durham, DC
Stanley Turrentine performing at an AAJC workshop 
Dr. Larry Ridley and Dr. David Baker, NEA Jazz Master, Director of Jazz Studies at Indiana University, AAJC Advisory Board Member
 Photographs by Jim Alexander 
6/26 - 6/27/2009
AAJC/NAJJP Jazz Symposium celebrating Juneteenth and Black Music Month at the Hayti Heritage Center,
AAJC Panel "Jazz, The Church and Community, Sacred Versus Secular" at the
Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. Conference at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington, DC
                                     AAJC Danc Band 
Message from
Dr. Larry Ridley     
Executive Director
African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. 

Come Celebrate
Juneteenth and Black Music Month
at the Hayti Heritage Center
Durham, NC
June 26 and June 27, 2009
The African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. (AAJC) in partnership with the National Association of Juneteenth Jazz Presenters, Inc. (NAJJP) celebrate Juneteenth and Black Music Month with a symposium at the Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Fayetteville Street, Durham, NC, (919) 683-1709, June 26 & 27, 2009. This joint project was initiated by the AAJC, which is an affiliate of the Music Department at North Carolina Central University. The organization has an office at Durham's historic Golden Belt as part of a community outreach program within the Triangle area. The outreach program's focus is on jazz education at the K-12 and college and university levels. The AAJC mission is to preserve jazz as a rare and valuable American treasure that has influenced the social, economic, political and religious aspects of society globally.
The symposium will be launched on Friday, June 26, 2009 at 2:00 PM with an interactive workshop entitled
"Jazz and Hip Hop - Musical and Historical Connections"The workshop will be conducted by Dr. Will Smith, Executive Director of the W.E.S. Group, Coordinator of Music Industry at North Carolina Central University, Jazz musician and Hip Hop artist. The workshop will demonstrate the connections between jazz and hip hop music. Workshop activities will provide students, teachers and other participants with a clear understanding of the unifying features of cultural creations that emanate from the African American community. Sample curricula will be provided to participating teachers that can be adapted to their lesson plans.
An evening performance by Dr. Smith and the W.E.S. Group at 7:00 PM will incorporate the educational, musical and storytelling principles that will be demonstrated during the afternoon workshop.
On Saturday, June 27th at 2:00 PM there will be a panel discussion entitled "Jazz, the Church and the Community".  The panelists
will explore the relationship between sacred versus secular music, how each is perceived by the African American community and how the music has influenced the political, social and economic aspects of   American culture.  The Moderator will be Mr. Keith McKinley, Esq., AAJC President. The members of the panel will be:
Rev. Marvin Chandler
Lecturer, Pianist, Indianapolis, IN

Rev. Jean-Luc Charles
Associate Pastor, White Rock Baptist Church, Durham, NC

Rev. Ronald Myers, Sr., M.D.
Director, Fellowship of Creative Christian Jazz Musicians (FCCJM) & Chairman, National Association of Juneteenth Jazz Presenters (NAJJP), Belzoni, MS

Rev. Michael Page
Executive Director, United Christian Campus Ministry at North Carolina Central University and Pastor of Antioch Baptist Church, Durham, NC

Rev. Canon, Edwin E. Smith
Retired Episcopal Minister, Glen Mills, PA

Dr. Will Smith
Executive Director, W.E.S. Group,   Coordinator of Music Industry, North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC
A "Juneteenth Jazz Worship Concert" will be given at 7:00 PM. The performers will be National Juneteenth Jazz Director, Rev. Dr. Ronald Myers, on piano and trumpet and the "Juneteenth Jazz Praise Ensemble", featuring Derrick Brown on bass, Wilton Knott, on percussion and Aye Aton, on drums. The performance will also feature the "The Love Christian Center Male Chorus", directed by Audie Heard  The chorus is supported by Pastor Bishop W. Ronald and Mother Lotus Hash. The Center is located in East Spencer, NC.
The works of Mr. Jim Alexander, noted photojournalist and AAJC Official Photo Documentarian, will be on exhibit throughout the two day symposium. His exhibit "Those Who Praise Him" will include a selection of jazz and hip hop artists such as Duke Ellington, Mary Lou Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Donald Byrd and Russell Gunn whose musical works reflect the deep spiritual roots inherent in black music. Mr. Alexander's work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. They can be found in many public and private collections, including the Smithsonian.
This event will prove to be not only educational, but inspiring and entertaining. The workshop and panel discussion are free and open to the general public. Evening Performances: $15, Students and Seniors $10 
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AAJC HBCU Student All-star Band

Rev. Dr. Ronald W. Myers, S.R. M.D.
Director, Fellowship of Creative Christian Jazz Musicians (FCCJM) and Chairman, National Association of Juneteenth Jazz Presenters (NAJJP) 
 As the National Juneteenth Jazz Artist, minister, physician and jazz musician, Rev. Ronald V. Myers, Sr., M.D., performs across the country promoting "June Is Black Music Month!" - CELEBRATING JUNETEENTH JAZZ - Preserving Our African American Jazz Legacy!".  Founder of the National Association of Juneteenth Jazz Presenters (NAJJP), Myers is the leader of the "Modern Juneteenth Movement" in America and the National Juneteenth Holiday Campaign.
Myers lives and practices medicine in the Mississippi Delta, America's poorest geographical region. He is the first ordained and commissioned medical missionary to the Mississippi Delta in the history of the African American church in America.

Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1956 and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Myers' career as a jazz musician was greatly influenced by performing with the legendary jazz saxophonist Sonny Stitt as a 16 year old high school student.
Myers met his true music mentor, the late Professor Jimmy Cheatham, formerly with the Duke Ellington and Count Basie Orchestras while completing his pre-medicine studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.   He met his jazz artistic mentor, the legendary New Orleans jazz clarinetist Alvin Batiste, while completing his residency in family medicine at L.S.U. Medical Center, Charity Hospital, in Baton Rouge, Bogalusa and New Orleans, Louisiana. 
Upon completion of his residency in family medicine in 1988, Myers moved to the Mississippi Delta and began performing in Jackson, Mississippi and throughout the state with jazz saxophonist Ron Wesley, jazz bassist London Branch, and jazz drummer, Al Fielder.  Noted Mississippi Jazz promoter and historian John Reese, with assistance from Myers, founded the Mississippi Jazz and Heritage Festival (MJHF). Reese appointed Myers the Artistic Director of MJHF. The MJHF, supported by the Smith Robinson Museum and Cultural Center and the Myers Foundation, educates students and communities about Mississippi's jazz legacy through a series of concerts and lectures throughout the state. The state's jazz legacy includes legendary figures as Milt Hinton, Gerald Wilson, Lester Young and Teddy Edwards.
Dr. Myers' 1994 CD release, "Doctor's Orders", was acclaimed by noted jazz critic Willard Jenkins,  to be  "one of the most important recordings in the last ten years."  It featured original jazz compositions like "Song for Tchula", "Blues for Tchula" and "Message from the Country".  The CD raised visibility to the Mississippi Delta as an area of a great jazz legacy in America.

An ordained Baptist Minister, Myers is also Founder & Director of the Fellowship of Creative Christian Jazz Musicians (FCCJM). He directs and performs at jazz worship services in churches across America.  Reverend Myers also served as Chaplain for the Black Jazz Music Caucus (BJMC), later renamed the African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. (AAJC), an independent 501c3 affiliate of the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE). From 1990 - 2000, Myers led and performed in unique jazz worship services, giving praise to God through improvisational worship music at IAJE conventions throughout the country.  His partnership with the African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. continues to this day.
"Like the Psalmist David, in Amos 6:5, who praised God through improvisation worship, I love to praise God through jazz," states Rev. Myers. "The psalmist says in Psalms 150, 'Let everything that has breath Praise the Lord!
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AAJC HBCU Student All-star Band

Jim Alexander
Photojournalist and Official AAJC Photographer and Documentarian 
 Jim Alexander is a founding member of the North Carolina Central University/ African American Jazz Caucus Research Institute. He has been involved with the African American Jazz Caucus since 1987 as a consultant and documentary photographer. His photographs of AAJC and IAJE are viewed internationally in publications and on the web. A graduate of the New York Institute of Photography, Mr. Alexander also studied communication psychology at the New School for Social Research and business organization and management at Rutgers University.
Mr. Alexander is the founder and former executive director of FACT, Inc and was consultant to Yale School of Art and Architecture in New Haven, CT where he also served as First Vice Chairman of the New Haven Black Coalition and co-founder/ Executive Vice Chairman of the National Black Media Coalition.
 In 1976 Mr. Alexander relocated to Atlanta, GA to become Director of Communications for the Federation of Southern Cooperatives. In 1977 he took a position as Photographer in Residence at the Neighborhood Arts Center where he established a Photography Training program. From 1984-1990 Jim Alexander was Photographer in Residence at Clark College where he taught photojournalism and documented the historical merger of Clark College and Atlanta University. His photographs are in the Smithsonian and other public and private collections in America and abroad. 
Jim Alexander is a board member and past president of African Americans for the Arts (AAFTA) and is a member of African American Artists in Historically Black Colleges & Universities (AHBCU). He is chairman of the community advisory board for radio station WRFG in Atlanta, GA
He is an award winning photographer, teacher and media consultant. Among his many awards, Jim Alexander is a 2004 recipient of the Paul Jones, Artist of Distinction Award and is a 2006 inductee into The History Makers archive
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 Will Smith Photo

Dr. Will Smith
President and Founder
International Association for Hip Hop Education and 
Coordinator of Music Industry, North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC
William E. Smith holds a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from the University of Maryland, a MM in jazz composition and a BM in jazz studies from Howard University. With education and performance as his focal points, Smith is the Music Industry Coordinator at North Carolina Central University where he teaches courses on music industry, management and hip hop history. He was also an assistant professor of music at American University where he taught courses in jazz history, rock history, music appreciation and conducted the American University Jazz Ensemble.

He is a frequent lecturer and clinician in jazz, hip hop, and the music industry. His dissertation on hip hop and its relationship with performance and ritual was completed with fellowship assistance from the David C. Driskell Center for the Study of the African Diaspora. He published this ethnographic text in his new book, "Hip Hop as Performance and Ritual: Biography and Ethnography in Underground Hip Hop."

As a performer, he has performed and recorded with many ensembles in a variety of genres, and has led his own traditional jazz group, the W.E.S. Group, for thirteen years. The group has recorded four albums including A Jazz Mass, an original composition of the Episcopal and Catholic liturgy in a lush jazz arrangement. Their latest recording, Ancestors was released November 2006 and they just recently went on a Caribbean tour performing at the St. Lucia, Bonaire, and Anguilla Jazz Festivals.

Some of the individuals he has performed or recorded with include: James Moody, Donald Byrd, Kenny Burrell, Wynton Marsalis, Jon Hendricks, Larry Ridley, David Baker, Fred Hammond, Hezekiah Walker, Cynda Williams and Malcolm Jamal-Warner. Dr. Smith also composes music for documentaries and film. He composed music for a PBS documentary entitled "Across the River"  (a documentary on the community in Anacostia, southeast Washington, DC) and for several independent films:  "The Green Line", "Search for Osun",  "Finally Sayin What I Really Mean".

In 2007 Dr. Smith was elected DC Chapter president of the IAJE (International Association for Jazz Education) and he was also elected as a board member to the DC Chapter of NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences Grammy Foundation).

Dr. Smith is also president and founder of the IAHHE (International Association for Hip Hop Education) and the BE Community Foundation. Through the IAHHE he has held teacher-training workshops at the National Music Center in Washington, DC and successfully integrated a hip hop curriculum into the Friendship Public Charter Schools summer and after school program. Through the BE Community Foundation he is directing a summer music camp in Anguilla, West Indies and in Asheboro and Randleman, NC.

Through performance and education Dr. William E. Smith endeavors to inspire as well as enlighten audiences with an awareness and enjoyment of music and the arts that brings people together and can last for generations.
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For additional information please contact:
Dr. Larry Ridley
African American Jazz Caucus, Inc.
3 Stuyvesant Oval  
Suite 9B
New York , NY 10009-2128
Phone  (212) 979-0304
Dr. Ronald Myers, Sr.
National Association of Juneteenth Jazz Presenters, Inc.
P.O. Box 29
Belzoni, MS 39038
Phone (662) 247-3364
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