Thursday, April 4, 2013

Ancient Futures Show

Last night the Sophie's Parlor collective was thrilled to cover Willard Jenkins' spot at 10 PM - Midnight,
Helen's view of Tim!
Ancient Futures. In keeping with his format, we had music from the past, and current voices who are our classics of the future. Helen and Tim were the Divas of the Night, and Kim, Lakeisha and Deb kept us on task at the engineering board. It was a night of laughter, of good music and of fun!

Here is the playlist:

  • Sophie's Theme, Pam Parker, Imagine
  • Spring Is Here, Ella Fitzgerald, Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Rodgers and Hart Songbook
  • Feelin' Good, Carmen McRae, Women Talk (Remastered)
  • A Woman's Place Is In the Groove, Ginger Smock, Ginger Smock 1946-1958 Los Angeles Studio and Demo Recordings
  • Ain't Nobody's Biz-ness If I Do, Bessie Smith, The Very Best Of
  • Lullaby Of Birdland, Sarah Vaughan, Sarah Vaughan Verve Jazz Masters
  • Honeysuckle Rose, Hazel Scott, This Is Jazz
  • Wholly Earth, Abbey Lincoln, Wholley Earth
  • Aries, Mary Lou Williams, Zodiac Suite
  • Here Comes the Sun, Nina Simone, The Very Best of Nina Simone: Sugar in My Bowl (1967-1972)
  • Here's to Life, Shirley Horn, Here's to Life
  • It Might As Well Be Spring, Cassandra Wilson & Jacky Terrasson, Rendezvous
  • La vie en rose, Melody Gardot, The Absence
  • Younger Than Springtime, Amel Larrieux, Lovely Standards
  • I'll Remember April, Grace Kelly, Mood Changes
  • A Taste Of Honey, Lizz Wright, The New Jazz Divas
  • Light Above the Trees, Keiko Matsui, The Piano
  • Grass Roots, Terri Lyne Carrington, Money Jungle: Provocative In Blue
  • Feelin' Good, Meshell Ndegeocello, Pour une âme souveraine - A Dedication to Nina Simone
  • A Change Is Gonna Come, Anat Cohen, Notes from the Village
  • Apple Blossom, Esperanza Spalding, Chamber Music Society
  • Walkin' Shoes, Jen Krupa - Leigh Pilzer Quintet, JLQ
  • Spring, Heather Rigdon, Young & Naïve
Check out the video of Melody Gardot singing La Vie en Rose!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Until The End of Time

The year is 2013. The month is February. Although we have advanced in many ways as a species, it would appear that since the beginning of recorded herstory, women worldwide have been discriminated against, faced harassment and endured unbelievable forms of violence against them.

It is evident in the bible and other holy books, laws established and cultures of all societies that violence against women is a part of the fabric of life. Understand that such violence extends to girls as well and it is gender specific.

This violence at times has not been questioned. As a matter of fact, in some cases, females are expected to submit or participate in their own violation.

The movement to end violence against women and define this gender violence as a human rights violation is recent. It has been taking shape over the past 41 years, building awareness among women and resistance by women, as well as by some men.

When we speak about violence against women worldwide, what are some of the forms it takes?
For centuries violence against women has been an accepted practice. Now there is a movement challenging it. There are organizations providing support to women, groups empowering women to act as survivors rather than victims. Changes in the law are being forced. Women are organizing to have legislation enacted which will provide the types of protections necessary. These human rights violations and gender discrimination cannot, should not, and will not continue until the end of time.

-Nkenge Toure

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Sing the Truth - Powerhouse Performance

Just a few weeks ago, three of the Sophie's Parlor Divas experienced the controlled power, elegant grace, and pure joy that is bottled in a concoction called "Sing the Truth:" just over two hours of listening to Dianne Reeves, Angelique Kidjo, and Lizz Wright. They were backed by two more stars of the jazz world, Geri Allen and Teri Lyne Carrington, as well as James Genus, Munyungo Jackson, and Romero Lubambo.  The song list included these and a few more surprises: Bold Soul Sister, Both Sides Now, Heart and Soul, Talkin' about a Revolution, Endangered Species, Easy Rider, Afrika

There are really no words to express the brilliance of the evening, except perhaps "yowza!" From the beginning, as they commanded, strode and wafted onto the stage, respectively, the audience was theirs for the taking. They performed together, in duos and singly, belting out a wide selection of songs in a variety of styles, "honoring the music and spirit of great women of jazz, folk, r&b, gospel and the blues." It was the last night of the tour, unfortunately for you, but it seems that these women will not want to be apart for long. Their friendship and love for one another was palpable.

With all of that what more could be said, but what a blueprint they gave the audience and the rest of the world of music. Women can get along, women do make beautiful music together and most importantly women do Sing The Truth. Stellar, superb, transformative. For all of you I hope the tour will be revived again. - by Helen Viksnins

A clip from Jazz Fest's Sing the Truth

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