Jazz Legacies in Harlem

“Jazz Legacies in Harlem,” is a photographic journey I began in 2013 and completed it this year (2020). I was a fan, influenced by the stories and lessons inside rhythm and blues but it wasn’t until my early 20s at Darryl’s house in LA where he hit me with John Coltrane’s, “My Favorite Things,” did I recognize the soulful beauty and power of jazz music. I shouldered this photographic mission throughout many clubs in Harlem; some of which are no longer present, as I paid homage to some of the leaders of great musicianship. In this body of work the titles reflect the songs, album or performance (as in Jeni LeGon’s case) for which they are noted.

You see music (the arts) represents a place where a man and woman can be free to express themselves within the blessings of their skills, talents and influences. The outstanding musicians in this body of work are representative of musical greats; broad shoulders upon which they proudly stand inside multiple conversations, loaded within symphonic heartbeats, pounding throughout their veins.

From plantation work songs to spirituals the blues, with traces of rhythmic ties to Africa, gave birth to jazz; to the soulful sounds of speaking in harmonic layers, providing the world with powerful platforms for musicians everywhere to express their inner feelings; jamming alongside commanding collective narrations as they ‘lay it down,’ inside super dynamic solos.

I dedicate this project to all the singers, musicians, composers, arrangers and dancers who have inspired our lives, preserved our culture, up-lifted our spirits and settled our souls inside the magnificent bars and clefs of this wonderful African-American music called jazz.

So join me, as we hit the clubs, bounce notes off the ceiling; strike raging cymbals against the walls as “Jazz Legacies in Harlem,” blesses us with stimulating treats of yesterday’s orchestration captured within today’s improvisation.

Please visit Collector’s Gallery 1 & 2 on this website.

Blessings to everyone and STAY SAFE!

Copyright by Howard T. Cash September 15, 2016

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