Local partnership brings jazz back to Jenkins Orphanage

  • Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Lonnie Hamilton

Local non-profit organization, Jenkins Orphanage and Palmetto Primary Care Physicians along with Carolina Studios have partnered for the inaugural Roots of Jazz Music Festival to benefit Jenkins Orphanage. The festival will be held on Saturday, April 13 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 3923 Azalea Drive North Charleston.

The Jenkins Orphanage was founded in 1891 by a former slave, the Reverend Daniel Jenkins, who made it his life’s mission to help and provide for children in need. The orphanage would become known for musical talent through the Jenkins Orphanage Band. The band gained national recognition – performing for the Queen of England on several occasions and for both the inaugural parades of President Theodore Roosevelt and William Taft. Former band members went on to make music alongside jazz greats like Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie and Lionel Hampton.

“It is important to bring the joy of jazz back to not only the youth, but to the Charleston community,” states Johanna Carrington, director of The Jenkins Orphanage. “Our presence and music is part of the living history that is Charleston, we would like to share that with the world.”

The festival will feature the sounds of local jazz artists such as Lonnie Hamilton, Oscar Rivers, Ann Caldwell, High Gravity Jazz, Jazzy Jay, Skipp Pearson, Charlton Singleton, Sam Burchfield, Mr. Blues Williams and the Benedict Gospel Choir as well as other musicians from South Carolina middle and high school jazz bands, tastings from Charleston restaurants, and specialty vendors from the local area.

This event is great for people of all ages; Carolina Studios, a non-profit organization that helps children through music, will be bringing out the mobile studio and allowing children to tour and test it out. Along with the mobile studio the North Charleston Fire Department will be bringing out their trucks to give fire safety tours as well as jump castles. There will also be a silent auction to help raise additional funds to benefit the orphanage and Carolina Studios. So come out and join this incredible effort of preserving the history that is so unique to the Charleston community, grab your blanket or chair and come listen to the sounds of Charleston right on the water, this is an event you don’t want to miss.

General admission tickets can be purchased in advance for $8 at Cats Music in Summerville, Monster Music in West Ashley (cash only), or at the gate for $10. All proceeds raised from this event will be donated to Jenkins Orphanage and Carolina Studios.

For more information, contact Halie Tumbleston at 843-735-5344 or visit The Roots of Jazz Music Festival’s face book page at www.facebook.com/therootsofjazzmusicfestival.

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