Hyde Park Jazz Society hosts Biggest/Best Jam Session … Ever! @ Marmon Grand

Hear and see some 50 or more local jazz greats “do their thing – live and in living color!” — when the Hyde Park Jazz Society stages a fundraiser, “The Biggest & Best Jam Session — Ever!,” on Thursday, 6:30 p.m. a

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Hear and see some 50 or more local jazz greats “do their thing – live and in living color!” — when the Hyde Park Jazz Society stages a fundraiser, “The Biggest & Best Jam Session — Ever!,” on Thursday, 6:30 p.m. at Janet and Bob Connor’s The Marmon Grand, 2230 S. Michigan. Plan to hang out ‘til at least 1:30 a.m., ‘cause it’s gonna take that long for each jazz musician to be spotlighted! Donations begin at $10 and go as high as your imagination and wallet will allow. Valet parking will be available as will food and drinks for purchase.

Listed among performers donating their time and talent are Joan Collaso, Frieda Lee, Curtis Robinson, Dee Alexander, Ari Brown, Ernie Adams, Maggie Brown, Willie Pickens, Miguel De La Cerna, Pharez Whitted, Chuck Webb, Frank Russell, Roderick Harper, Reginald T. McCant, Nick Tountas, Art Hoyle, Ava Logan, Lady T, Ken Chaney, Loretta Lee, Bill McFarland, Larry Novac, Charles Johnson, Charles Heath, Victor Goines, Corky McClerkin, Juli Woods, Cecile Savage, Cortez Bryson, Marlene Rosenburg, Steve Berry, Larry Bowen, Derek Henderson, Dennis Corral, Buddy Fambro (who dat?), Audley Reid, Yosef Ben Israel and so many more! Attendees are encouraged to “spread the word” and bring family and friends. Make tax-deductible checks to Hyde Park Jazz Society. Yep! We’re there!

Founded by the late James Wagner and now headed by Charlie Thomas, prexy, HPJS,

a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, encourages, promotes and expands jazz in the greater Hyde Park community and mid-south side as well as to the education of young jazz musicians and expansion of the listening audience.

Ooops! My Bad! – The HistoryMakers’ correct date for its Tribute Evening to Ashford & Simpson is Saturday, Nov. 19 — not the 9th as printed in a previous “Teesee’s Town” column! The $500 per ticket benefit in Thorne Hall of Northwestern University’s School of Law, 357 E. Chicago Ave., will spotlight Gwen Ifill, PBS-TV moderator, interviewing Valerie Simpson about Nick Ashford, her beloved late husband and recording artist/songwriting teammate. Entertainment will come from none other than Stephanie Mills, Kindred The Family Soul and Patti Austin, says Julieanna Richardson, The HistoryMakers’ founder and executive director. Call (312) 674-1900.

High Honor – James Compton, Chicago Urban League’s former president/CEO, receives the distinguished Edwin C. “Bill” Berry Civil Rights Award on Saturday at CUL’s 50th annual Golden Fellowship Dinner at the Hilton Chicago. Compton led the League from 1972-2006 and blazed a trail for educational, social and economic empowerment. During his tenure, Compton refocused the organization’s interest in education and economic development while developing a new emphasis on community empowerment. In addition to putting the agency on a firm financial base, he’s credited with changing the League from primarily social service to research, advocating for public policy, ensuring that the League has a voice on issues affecting the urban poor and the African American community.

Named for Berry, who led the League from 1956-1969 and was a key leader in our town’s civil rights movement, the award recognizes an individual who has, like Berry, left a mark on the nation through hard work, perseverance and creativity. He shifted CUL’s portfolio to include fighting against segregation, supporting voting rights and open housing. Berry’s charismatic style won over allies in business. civic and religious communities. Previous recipients: Linda Johnson Rice (‘08), Johnson Publishing Co. chair; Hank R. Schwab (‘09), Holocaust survivor and civil rights activist; Rev. Dr. Addie L. Wyatt (‘10), civil, labor and women’s rights leader; and Cicely Tyson (‘11), legendary actress.

Grassroots Fun – Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO) hosts its Annual Bronze Affair, “Going Forward, Going Strong!,” on Nov. 19, 7 p.m., at Room 43, with dinner, silent auction, raffle and music by Detour Jaz Funk. For $50 tickets ($90 per couple), call (773) 548-7500. KOCO has been an instrument for grassroots democracy in the N. Kenwood and Oakland for some 40 years. Founded by religious and community leaders in the 1960’s, KOCO facilitated organizing campaigns that increased the resources and services available to families and residents. KOCO continues as a vehicle and voice of low-income and working families.

Newsy Names – Harry Belafonte, accompanied by Fr. Michael Pfleger, shared his amazing story as a civil rights activist and entertainment icon on Tuesday during a lunch, an interview by Atty. Brenda Russell and a book signing at the Union League Club hosted by the YWCA of Metro Chicago’s Authors Group. In Belafonte’s fascinating new memoir, My Song, as well as in his HBO documentary, Sing Your Song, he recounts his extraordinary life … Cristal Thomas, Illinois’ deputy guv, speaks Tuesday when South Central Community Services stages its Annual Lunch, Meeting the Challenges, on Friday at its community center, 1021 E. 83rd St. Hosts: Michael Platt, board chair; Dr. Felicia Blasingame, president/CEO … WVON’s Emilie McKendall along with other friends, family, colleagues and associates of Rhonda SallĪ˜ come together to support her candidacy for Judge of the Circuit Court on Sunday, 3:30 p.m., in the Quadrangle Club, 6700 South Shore Dr. Suggested donation: $50 … Happy b’day to Dr. Shelley Poole Amuh, Pamela Jones, Roland Martin, Derrick Nesbitt, Angie Chatman, Merry Green, Steve Silk Hurley, Elayne Marchbanks, Paul Montes, Lisa Lenoir, Aruba Tommy Bennett, Perri Small, Gerald Griffin, Theresa Doby, Jackie Austin, Marietta Griffith Crowder, Valerie McKinney, Lorenzo Clemons, Robin Price, Moni Rashad and Tracy McLemore … Get well cheer to Jim Hinton, Walgreens pharmacist; and prayers go up as he’s on the mend in Warren Barr Pavilion, room #722, 66 W. Oak St., Chicago 60610.

Holiday Happenings! – Delta Doings! The Chicago Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, headed by Taliva A. Tillman, president, is up and ready for “Delta Belles Christmas,” its annual festive holiday bash, on Dec. 17 at the site of its earlier party triumphs, U.S. Cellular Field (a.k.a. White Sox Park). Co-chairs are Dushon Brown, Jetaun Corker-DeBerry and Kristine Hansberry. A donation of $65 includes an open bar, dinner, dancing and, of course, lots and lots of camaraderie! … Curtain Goin’ Up! See it again or see it for the first time – Congo Square Theatre Co.’s joyous Christmas tradition, The Nativity, at Goodman Theater, Dec. 2-31. General admission ducats @ $45 are on sale as are Target 2-for-1 Saturday matinee tickets. Call (312) 443-3800.

Copyright 2011 Chicago Defender

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