Billie Holiday Biography Jazz vocalist Billie Holiday was born in 1915 in Philadelphia. Considered one of the best jazz vocalists of all time, Holiday had a thriving career as a jazz singer for many years before she lost her battle with substance abuse. Also known as Lady Day, her autobiography was made into the 1972… Continue reading Profile: Billie Holiday (1915-1959)
Who Was John Coltrane? John Coltrane was born on September 23, 1926, in Hamlet, North Carolina. During the 1940s and '50s, he continued to develop his craft as a saxophonist and composer, working with famed musicians/bandleaders Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington and Miles Davis. Coltrane turned the jazz world on its head with technically marvelous, innovative playing that was thrillingly… Continue reading Profile: John Coltrane (1926-1967)
Who Was Miles Davis? Instrumental in the development of jazz, Miles Davis is considered one of the top musicians of his era. Born in Illinois in 1926, he traveled at age 18 to New York City to pursue music. Throughout his life, he was at the helm of a changing concept of jazz. Winner of… Continue reading Profile: Miles Davis
Film director and actor (William) Bill Duke was born on February 26, 1943 in Poughkeepsie, New York to Ethel Douglas Duke and William Duke, Sr. After earning his A.A. degree from Dutchess Community College, Duke became interested in the performing arts while attending Boston University in Massachusetts, although he initially enrolled as a pre-med… Continue reading Profile: Bill Duke (1947-)
The Haitian Revolution has often been described as the largest and most successful slave rebellion in the Western Hemisphere. It is certainly the only servile uprising that led to the creation of an independent nation, Haiti. Slaves initiated the rebellion in 1791 and by 1803 they had succeeded in ending not just slavery but French… Continue reading Haitian Revolution (1791-1804)
What is Jazz? Jazz is a kind of music in which improvisation is typically an important part. In most jazz performances, players play solos which they make up on the spot, which requires considerable skill. There is tremendous variety in jazz, but most jazz is very rhythmic, has a forward momentum called "swing," and uses… Continue reading What is Jazz?
Abney an American artist, based in New York. She was born in Chicago, Illinois. She is an African American contemporary artist and painter who explores race, gender, pop culture, and politics in her work. Her work uses symbols and bright colors to present new ways of approaching loaded topics as she invites viewers to draw… Continue reading Profile: Nina Chanel Abney