JFA Gala Concert to Honor Parsons


​Grateful Dead founding member Bob Weir (above) will collaborate with JFA Music Director Steve Jordan at this year’s “A Great Night in Harlem” gala concert.

(Photo: Courtesy Bob Weir)

The Jazz Foundation of America will present its annual “A Great Night in Harlem” gala concert on March 28 at the Apollo Theater, featuring a night of jazz, blues, rock and more. Proceeds from the event benefit the JFA’s life-saving programs, which provide housing assistance, pro bono medical care, disaster relief, meaningful work and direct financial support to musicians and their families in times of crisis.

The evening will feature a collaboration between Bobby Weir (founding member of the Grateful Dead, Dead & Company and Bobby Weir & Wolf Bros) and JFA Musical Director Steve Jordan. Additionally, there will be a performance by the pioneers of Afrofuturism, the Sun Ra Arkestra, directed by 99-year-old Marshall Allen.

The gala will also feature a Max Roach Centennial Tribute led by trumpeter/composer Charles Tolliver and featuring fellow all-stars Dee Dee Bridgewater, Billy Harper, George Cables and Rufus Reid. The segment will include three masters of the drums — Al Foster, Billy Hart and Louis Hayes — who will be honored as Titans of Jazz.

The night will culminate with a special honor presented to business icon and JFA Chairman Emeritus Richard D. Parsons with JFA’s Dr. Billy Taylor Humanitarian Award for his leadership and service to JFA and musicians nationwide. This presentation will mark a leadership transition at JFA, with longtime JFA President Jarrett Lilien (WisdomTree) assuming the role of chairman following Parsons’ 15-year tenure, and dedicated board member Dr. Daveed D. Frazier becoming the president of JFA’s board of directors.

To buy tickets, purchase benefit packages or make a donation, click HERE. DB

  • Casey_B_2011-115-Edit.jpg

    Benjamin possessed a fluid, round sound on the alto saxophone, and he was often most recognizable by the layers of electronic effects that he put onto the instrument.

  • Charles_Mcpherson_by_Antonio_Porcar_Cano_copy.jpg

    “He’s constructing intelligent musical sentences that connect seamlessly, which is the most important part of linear playing,” Charles McPherson said of alto saxophonist Sonny Red.

  • Albert_Tootie_Heath_2014_copy.jpg

    ​Albert “Tootie” Heath (1935–2024) followed in the tradition of drummer Kenny Clarke, his idol.

  • Geri_Allen__Kurt_Rosenwinkel_8x12_9-21-23_%C2%A9Michael_Jackson_copy.jpg

    “Both of us are quite grounded in the craft, the tradition and the harmonic sense,” Rosenwinkel said of his experience playing with Allen. “Yet I felt we shared something mystical as well.”

  • Larry_Goldings_NERPORT_2023_sussman_DSC_6464_copy_2.jpg

    Larry Goldings’ versatility keeps him in high demand as a leader, collaborator and sideman.

On Sale Now
April 2024
Béla Fleck
Look Inside
Print | Digital | iPad