It is only appropriate that this weekend's "Jazz on the Green" concert is associated with the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture. Williams was not only an amazing entertainer, but she was also deeply connected to her history. This weekend, two musicians will take the stage on the main quad of East Campus in keeping with the tradition of Mary Lou Williams. Leon Dunkley, the director of Jazz on the Green, chose certain performers because they embody all that Williams worked for.
The first will be YahZarah, a D.C. native born Dana Williams, who attended North Carolina Central University in Durham. YahZarah's distinct sound is greatly influenced by hip-hop and blues, and her creative fusion of the two genres affords her a distinctive aural aura. YahZarah has toured with Erykah Badu for the past three years and is now generating substantial buzz with her solo career. Quite simply, she is on the verge of a national breakthrough.
The second performer will be William Cepeda, an Afro-Puerto Rican trombone player who lets his heritage flow through his instrument. Cepeda also plays conch shells by creating different rhythms using shells in a chorus. In 1989, Cepeda began touring with the Dizzy Gillespie ensemble after the United Nations Orchestra came to Puerto Rico.
The Jazz on the Green performance is free and open to the public and will take place in the heart of East Campus at 2pm Saturday. So swing by for a fresh sound and a different groove--YahZara and Cepeda will make sure you won't regret it.
--By Cary Hughes
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