Saturday, October 19
Randy Weston’s African Rhythms in Tribute to Obo Addy – Presented by KMHD Radio
7:30 pm | Location: Evans Auditorium @ Lewis and Clark College | $30 general / $15 students
Randy Weston / piano
Alex Blake / bass
Neil Clarke / drums
Thara Memory and the American Music Program
Randy Weston one of the world’s foremost pianists and composers will perform at Lewis & Clark College on Saturday, October 19 at 7:30PM. Weston will be joined by his acclaimed group, African Rhythms featuring bassist Alex Blake and drummer Neil Clarke in tribute to the Ghanaian drum master Obo Addy. Other performers and highlights include, Addy’s long-standing and African inspired ensemble Okropong, a newly commissioned work by special guest Thara Memory performed with the American Music Program, and a video and spoken word tribute by the acclaimed local poet Wone. African Rhythms will perform in three contexts; in trio, with Okropong, and the American Music Program.
Randy Weston last performed in Portland at the 2010 Portland Jazz Festival in solo at the Winningstad Theater. He also conducted a master class at Portland State University with Darrell Grant and discussed his recently published book, African Rhythms: The Autobiography of Randy Weston. An NEA Jazz Master and Guggenheim Fellow, Weston has played and recorded with a wide array of musicians from Charles Mingus and Pharoah Sanders to the Master Gnawa Musicians of Morocco. He has been primarily informed by Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk and considers among his heroes, Count Basie Cole Porter, Nat King Cole and his cousin Wynton Kelly.
Obo Addy taught music at Lewis & Clark College for 25 years. He traveled throughout the country conducting teaching residencies and performing both solo and with his performing groups. He founded two ensembles which toured nationally- Okropong, dedicated to traditional tribal music and dance of Ghana, and Kukrudu, which performed original music written by Addy.
In 1996 Addy was awarded the National Heritage Fellowship Award by the NEA. This is the highest honor a traditional artist can receive in this country. Obo is the first African born artist to ever receive the award. He was a leader, a teacher, an entertainer, and above all he was an awe-inspiring artist of numerous genres. He has affected hundreds of thousands of lives in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. He passed away on September 13, 2013.