Tag Archives: Dawoud Kringle

Rest in Power, Randy Weston

The memorial service for the recently departed Randy Weston, held at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, was nothing short of inspirational

By Dawoud Kringle

Randy WestonMusic was performed. Randy Weston’s African Rhythms Ensemble paid tribute to their departed founder and leader. Every note, every stroke on a drum was a tribute to the master musician.

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Kamyar Arsani

Cassette and Digital Release by Kamyar Arsani & Benjamin Schurr “Voices in the Dark”

Kamyar Arsani had a vision…Voices in the Dark…

Music Review by Dawoud Kringle

Kamyar Arsani Artist: Kamyar Arsani & Benjamin Schurr
Title: Voices In The Dark
Label: Blight Rec
Genre: Electronic, Rock, Pop, Folk, World, & Country

There are voices in the dark. I hear them. I see them. When soul is pushed to the corner of time, dancing becomes more than a form, becomes a spirit. In the strangest of ways, you lose your fear when you dance with Voices in the Dark.” – Kamyar Arsani

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Randy Weston Remembered: A Master Musician Who Travelled the Bridge Between Africa and America

Text by By Dawoud Kringle

Randy WestonOn the morning of September 1st, 2018, pianist and composer Randy Weston was called home.

Randy Weston was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1926. to Vivian (née Moore; a native of Virginia) and Frank Weston (of Jamaican-Panamanian descent, who owned a restaurant in Brooklyn where Weston was raised). His father was a staunch Garveyite, who passed on the Pan-Africanist leader’s Afrocentric, self-reliant values to his son. He became interested in music at a young age. Among his early influences and inspirations were jazz giants such as Count Basie, Nat King Cole, Art Tatum, and Duke Ellington. He would often cite Thelonious Monk as having the greatest impact on him.

After serving in the US armed forces in WW2, taking time to study European classical piano, and later running a restaurant (which was frequented by many jazz musicians), Weston began performing in  the late 1940s with Bullmoose Jackson, Frank Culley and Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. He worked with Kenny Dorham in 1953 and in 1954 with Cecil Payne. He formed his own trio and quartet and released his debut recording as a leader in 1954, “Cole Porter in a Modern Mood.” In 1955, Down Beat magazine’s International Critics’ Poll voted him New Star Pianist.

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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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Addendum: Rep. Glenn Grothman’s Attack on the Arts Defeated!

Text by Dawoud Kringle

NOWOn Wednesday, July 18th, one of the largest vote margins in support of the Endowments, the U.S. House of Representatives defeated an amendment that would have cut funding the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The House voted down the Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI) amendment by a vote of 114 – 297.

During the floor debate on Tuesday, July 17th, bipartisan supporters spoke out in support for the arts and the Endowments. Among them were Chairman Ken Calvert (R-CA) and Congressional Arts Caucus co-Chairs Leonard Lance (R-NJ) and Reps. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) all spoke against Grothman’s amendment.

This bipartisan showing and resounding vote is a clear demonstration of how strongly supported the National Endowments are by our elected officials in Congress. This is an important win in the fight against the Trump agenda to destroy art and culture in the US.