“Music is the universal language that everyone can hear and understand.”
– Rashaan Roland Kirk
PDX Jazz was bestowed a very generous gift from members Roberto Lovato and Laura Golino de Lovato for the purpose of creating a Fund that will help underwrite the cost of attendance at PDX Jazz events for Portland-area low income citizens and disadvantaged youth. The Lovato’s vision—which mirrors our own—is to make our events more accessible to these groups, and to be a part of the culture that messages the positive influence music has on our community’s youth, while keeping jazz music in the forefront of Portland.
At the Lovato’s suggestion we have named this fund “Bright Moments,” which honors the great jazz musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk, whose tenacious spirit fashioned a brilliant career in jazz despite blindness and stroke, and who spoke passionately from the stage about black history and civil rights. Kirk’s everyday greeting in the face of major obstacles was “Bright Moments.” With the lead of Roberto and Laura, we have very proudly initiated our Fund. Our first opportunity to utilize it was during this year’s PDX Jazz Festival, where the audience has included groups from the Self-Enhancement Institute, Portland Youth Builders, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and Central City Concern.