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JAM Fest ’18: The Empress – Musical Tribute to Bessie Smith

April 27, 2018 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Organizer: Jazzanooga, Phone:

April is National Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM) and Jazzanooga is ready to celebrate diverse artistic expressions throughout the city within a eclectic series of programs and events presented by some of Chattanooga’s creative individuals and groups; ALL MONTH LONG!!

Bessie Smith was rare for many reasons—her musical apprenticeship under Ma Rainey, her songs about liberated women, her plainspoken style that foreshadowed rap—but nothing distinguished her more than her voice.

Join us as we celebrate her life featuring the brilliant voice of Neshawn Bynum Calloway as she portrays Bessie in a musical tribute! Neshawn is a sought after vocalist who performs genres such as gospel, classical, jazz and she currently has released a new musical project honoring the Great Bessie Smith!!

Cash Bar provided.

More about Bessie Smith
Bessie Smith earned the title of “Empress of the Blues” by virtue of her forceful vocal delivery and command of the genre.

Her singing displayed a soulfully phrased, boldly delivered and nearly definitive grasp of the blues. In addition, she was an all-around entertainer who danced, acted and performed comedy routines with her touring company. She was the highest-paid black performer of her day and arguably reached a level of success greater than that of any African-American entertainer before her.

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