For release April 1, 2015
24 Jazz Heroes in 22 cities Announced by Jazz Journalists Association:
Educators, Presenters, Philanthropists, Fans, Players, Poet and Dentist
Hailed as 'Activists, Advocates, Altruists, Aiders and Abettors of Jazz'
April 1, New York City – Two dozen "Jazz Heroes" -- activists of positive influence on their musical communities -- have been announced today by the Jazz Journalists Association, a non-profit organization of media professionals, in collaborations with grassroots organizations and supporters in 22 U.S. cities, launching JazzApril, the annual campaign celebrating local music people and scenes during Jazz Appreciation Month, culminating in International Jazz Day.
The Jazz Heroes are what the JJA used to call its "A Team: Activists, advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors of jazz." This year's heroes include music educators, providers of financial, logistical, media and moral support, artists who put extra effort into community engagement, presenters and producers of Washington D.C.'s Duke Ellington Jazz Festival, the Monterey Jazz Festival, Philadelphia's Ars Nova Workshop, New York City's Lady Got Chops festival, Tula's Restaurant and Jazz Club in Seattle and New Jersey's New Brunswick Jazz Project, plus a dentist who recorded a late 1960s pop-rock hit and now offers health care to his jazz patients at steeply discounted rates. Organizations collaborating on Jazz Hero events include A Place for Jazz (Albany), B'town Jazz, JazzBoston, Elastic Arts (Chicago), B Sharp's Jazz Café, B'town Jazz, JazzStock, Kuumbwa Jazz, the Portland PDX Jazz Festival, the New Brunswick Jazz Project, WEMU, the Mid-South Jazz Foundation and MCG Jazz.
The Heroes are:
1. Ann Arbor MI: Don Chisholm, supporting music students and jazz venues
2. Baltimore: Charles Funn, trombonist's 20 years in a Baltimore high school
3. (SF) Bay Area: Avotcja Jiltonilro, one-woman multi-culti whirlwind
4. Bloomington IN: Monika Herzig, rural communities and Girls Create Music
5. Boston: Mark Sumner Harvey, minister-trumpeter-catalyst of Boston jazz
6. Chicago: Tatsu Aok, bridging jazz, blues, Asian improv and more
7. Madison: Howard Landsman, the Snowy Egret of Madison Jazz
8. Memphis: David C. Bradford, Sr, founder of Mid-South Jazz Foundation
9. Memphis: Jack N. Schaffer, Mid-South Jazz Foundation'a right hand man
10. New Brunswick NJ: Virginia DeBerry, turning a jazz desert fertile
11. New Orleans: Dr. Michael White, insuring the future of early jazz traditions
12. NY Capital Region: Lee Shaw, a pianist's jazz, even for her fellow patients
13. New York City: Kim A. Clarke, producing Lady Got Chops on a shoestring
14. Philadelphia: Mark Christman, solving presentations challenges
15. Pittsburgh: Dr. Nelson Harrison, connecting Pittsburgh and the Trombetto
16. Portland OR: Mel Brown, soulful drummer spurs his hometown's scene
17. Santa Cruz CA: Tim Jackson, founding Kuumbwa Jazz, recharging Monterey fest
18. Seattle: Mack Waldron, a players bandleader is a players' club owner
19. South Florida: Nicole Yarling, the violinist-vocalist runs a boot camp
20. St. Louis: Don Wolff, an "I love Jazz!" broadcaster of vision and grit
21. Tallahassee FL: Carole & Stan Fiore, "regulars" – backbone of a club's success
22. Washington D.C.: Charles Fishman, founded the Duke Ellington jazz festival
23. Woodstock NY: Dr. Bruce Jay Milner, a dentist's sliding scale for jazz greats
Detailed biographies and photos of the Jazz Heroes are posted at:
Local communities that nominate their heroes for JJA authorization obtain official proclamations from regional officials acknowledging their efforts, buzz about the Heroes and their April jazz activities to traditional and digital online media outlets, and hold public free events at which engraved Jazz Hero Awards are presented to the honorees. Information about these festivities will be forthcoming.
Announcement of the Jazz Heroes is the first stage of the JJA's three-part 2015 Jazz Awards. Nominees for awards for excellence in jazz music and journalism will be announced April 15, and winners of the Awards for musical achievement will be announced April 30 – International Jazz Day. Those Awards will be presented at musicians' performances nationwide. Winners of categories for excellence in music journalism will be announced at the JJA's New York City Jazz Awards party, to be held Tuesday, June 16 at the Blue Note Jazz Club in Manhattan. Ticket information will be posted at www.JJAJazzAwards.com.
North Coast Brewing Company is the beverage sponsor of the JJA's Jazz Heroes, Jazz April and Jazz Awards. Other sponsors to be announced.
Howard Mandel President@JazzJournalists.org
Jim Eigo Jim@jazzpromoservices.com
Luis Raul Montell firstname.lastname@example.org