Jazz and the Spirit: The Arts of Harlem in the American Religious Imagination
Monday, May 7th, 2012, 6 pm to 8 pm
Abyssinian Baptist Church
132 Odell Clark Place (formerly 138th St.)
A panel and short performance exploring the spiritual dimensions of Harlem’s aesthetic legacies and contemporary vitality. From the Spirituals, through Blues and Jazz and right on up to Hip Hop, religion has occupied a place of privilege in black musical repertoires. At the same time, Harlem has in many ways figured preeminently as a sacred place and space in American history. Wedding these themes together, historian Josef Sorett will moderate a panel featuring Jim Davis Jr., Abyssinian Baptist Church’s Director of Music Ministries and Fine Arts; Farah Jasmine Griffin, literary scholar and cultural critic at Columbia University; vocalist Melba Joyce of the Count Basie Orchestra; trumpet-player Marcus Printup of Jazz at Lincoln Center; and harpist Riza Printup.
This event is part of the Harlem Jazz Shrines celebration. Co-sponsored by the Office of Government and Community Affairs, and the Institute for Research in African-American Studies at Columbia University.