Category Archives: Special Women Around Us

It’s not only a man’s world!

Jazz Ladies – Part 2: Alice Coltrane

By Dawoud Kringle

Alice Coltrane

Photo by Chris May

This is the second of a series of articles devoted to the women of jazz. It is a small attempt to give props and respect to an inexcusably overlooked segment of the music community (the first installment featured Emily Remler. This installment features Alice Coltrane, because there are few musicians in the history of jazz who successfully embodied the balance between music and spirituality as she did.

Born Alice McLeod in Detroit, MI in 1937 to Solon and Annie McLeod, Alice developed an interest in music in early childhood. By the age of nine, she played organ during services at Mount Olive Baptist church. She pursued music and started to perform in various clubs around Detroit, until moving to Paris in the late 1950s. By 1960, she worked as the intermission pianist at the Blue Note Jazz Club. She studied classical music, and studied jazz with Bud Powell, and also appeared on French television in a performance with Lucky Thompson, Pierre Michelot and Kenny Clarke. In the early 60’s she returned to Detroit and began playing jazz with her own trio and as a duo with vibraphonist Terry Pollard.

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R.I.P.: Anne Feeney – A Real Music(ian) Activist

By Dawoud Kringle

Anne FeeneyAnne Feeney, folk musician, mainstay in the folk music movement and political and labor activist, has died.

Feeney was born July 1, 1951, in Charleroi, PA, and lived in the Brookline neighborhood of Pittsburgh. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in 1978, she spent 12 years practicing as a trial lawyer, primarily representing refugees and survivors of domestic violence. She was an active member of the American Federation of Musicians and the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). She served on the executive board of the Pennsylvania chapter of the National Organization of Women (NOW), and as the president of the Pittsburgh Musicians’ Union from 1981 to 1997, the first and only woman to ever hold that position.

She became a regular at major folk festivals , released 12 albums, and collaborated or performed with Pete Seeger, John Prine, and Peter Paul and Mary, Loretta Lynn, John Prine, Toshi Reagon, The Mammals, Dan Bern, the Indigo Girls, and Billy Bragg. Her anthem Have You Been to Jail for Justice is sung on picket lines and in jail cells around the world. She performed more than 4,000 shows across North America and Europe performing for striking workers, in union halls, and large protests. Her performance at the World Trade Organization protests in 1999 was featured in the documentary “This is What Democracy Looks Like.” She also organized dozens of tours supporting various causes, including the Sing Out for Single Payer Healthcare tour in 2009, and raised tens of thousands of dollars for strike funds and progressive causes.

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Jazz Ladies – Part 1: Emily Remler

 “In her brief ten year span as a recording artist (ending with her death at the age of 32 in 1990), Emily Remler not only proved that a female jazz guitarist could be the technical equal of any male counterpart, but also that she possessed the intensity and conviction of a true leading musical voice. Her early departure from the scene is tragic, and her legacy as both an artist and a person should be forever maintained in our collective memory.” –  Roger Blanc (MFM Board member, guitarist and composer)

Text by Dawoud Kringle

Most of you who read this are musicians. You can probably name a good number of female musicians. Maybe you are a female musician.

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Rest in Peace, Queen of Soul: Aretha Franklin 1942 – 2018

A musical legend, Aretha Franklin has been called to her final rest…

Aretha Franklin

Photo courtesy of by the bright scoop

Text by Dawoud Kringle

The news of Aretha Franklin’s passing came as no shock. It was common knowledge she had been gravely ill for a long time. Just days before her passing, news of her severe illness made international news. Nonetheless, it’s impossible to hear of the passing of this giant without sadness.

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Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift Co-Opted by Neo-Nazis

The Alt-Right Creates More Chaos in the Music Business

By Dawoud Kringle

As reported n a recent DooBeeDoo article examining the music of the alt-right, young alt-rightists / white supremacists plagiarized 80s Synthwave, and use it to promote their political agenda. 

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