Blues singer Maggie Brown to spend week in Q-C

Posted Online: Nov. 22, 2012, 4:40 pm
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By Jonathan Turner, jturner@qconline.com
Chicago singer and educator Maggie Brown will be the Mississippi Valley Blues Society "Blues in the Schools" artist-in residence in area schools next week.

The MVBS Education Committee was introduced to Ms. Brown when Nate Lawrence brought her to Davenport for the Polyrhythms Third Sunday Jazz program two years ago at the River Music Experience.

"We were so impressed with her performance that we asked Maggie to come back to conduct three days of workshops for kids the week of the 2012 BluesFest, and then to bring those kids and her talent to BlueSKool at the festival," said Karen McFarland of MVBS.

"Maggie Brown is a tremendously talented singer and performer using her gift to not only entertain, but educate as well," she said. Ms. Brown is the daughter of the late Oscar Brown Jr., a world-renowned composer, social activist and giant of the jazz music scene. Mr. Brown passed on his artistic integrity to his daughter "who now uses her own voice to create images that excite and inspire," Ms. McFarland said.

For 20 years, Ms. Brown has nationally toured her one-woman show, "LEGACY: Our Wealth of Music," which follows the history and evolution of African-American music and covers a wide range of musical forms.

Mother of three young boys, she sees the need to work through the arts to make an impact on young lives. Her message fosters care and respect for words, music, history and life, and Ms. Brown describes what she does as "edutainment." She calls on all her talents to demonstrate how black people courageously and virtuously responded to the horrors of slavery, segregation and disenfranchisement by creating inspiring and thriving art forms which have become part of our American cultural heritage, Ms. McFarland said.

Ms. Brown has been called upon by many arts organizations and schools to serve as artist-in-residence. Tracing the history of African-American creativity, she examines the roots of black musical culture and its flowerings, from African chant to early ragtime, from blues to jazz.

Ms. Brown will perform four times for the general public (free admission) during the week:

Monday Nov. 26, 6:30 p.m.: Davenport Public Library Eastern Avenue Branch, 6000 Eastern Ave., Davenport.
Wednesday, Nov. 28, 10 a.m.: Center for Active Seniors Inc., 1035 W. Kimberly Road, Davenport.
Thursday, Nov. 29, 7 p.m.: River Music Experience Cafe , 2nd and Main streets, Davenport.
Friday, Nov. 30, 6 p.m.: Bucktown Center for the Arts, Studio 56, 225 E. 2nd St., Davenport.


Local events heading

  Today is Monday, Sept. 22, the 265th day of 2014. There are 100 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The board of education has granted Thursday as a holiday for the children, with the expectation that parents who desire to have their children attend the Scott County Fair will do so on that day and save irregularity the rest of the week.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The guard fence around the new cement walk at the Harper House has been removed. The blocks are diamond shape, alternating in black and white.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Rev. R.B. Williams, former pastor of the First Methodist Church, Rock Island, was named superintendent of the Rock Island District.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Abnormally high temperatures and lack of rainfall in Illinois during the past week have speeded maturing of corn and soybean crops.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Installation of a new television system in St. Anthony's Hospital, which includes a closed circuit channel as well as the three regular Quad-Cities channels, has been completed and now is in operation.
1989 -- 25 years ago: When the new Moline High School was built in 1958, along with it were plans to construct a football field in the bowl near 34th Street on the campus. Wednesday afternoon, more than 30 years later, the Moline Board of Education Athletic Board sent the ball rolling toward the possible construction of that field by asking superintendent Richard Hennigan to take to the board of education a proposal to hire a consultant.

(More History)