Upon receipt of the monthly schedule from the Plush Room, San Francisco, I was blown away by the line-up: July 1-6, Carol Welsman. July 7 & 8, Jimmy McGriff. July 9 - 13, Freddie Hubbard. July 15 & 16, Vanessa Rubin. July 17 - 20 Andy Bey. July 21, maybe Silvia Droste, from Germany. July 22 - 24, Hilton Ruiz. July 25 - 27, Freddie Cole. July 28 & 29, Calvin Keys. July 30 - Aug. 3, Sonny Fortune.
We often go to the Plush Room to see Denise Perrier, Bill Henderson, Wesla Whitfield, Mike Greensill, Wanda Stafford, etc.. However, the July line-up was not at all like the previous line-ups; so I thought, 'there must be a story there.' I called Denise Perrier (I am a Denise "Phile.") to find out what happened, and was told that there is a new (to us) Jazz lady in town, Ms. Melanie Williams.
I arranged for a quick interview with Ms. Williams: All of her family were musical. She was surrounded by music as she grew up and she aquired a solid history of Jazz. She came to the Oakland Bay Area about two years ago after living bi-coastally between Los Angeles and New York. She was surprised to see how few of the Jazz legends were being booked at the very few venues here in the Bay Area, and decided to change that by creating a series of Jazz and blues concerts to entertain Bay Area music fans and to honor blues and Jazz greats. In honoring the greats, Ms. Williams has the support of United States Congress in the form of "A Congressional Lifetime Acheivment Award" signed by the Honorable Barbara Lee.
As a Jazz fan, I welcome Ms. Williams to our Jazz community which I see will be more vibrant because of her.
Back to Contents Page
Jazz Now Interactive
Copyright Jazz Now, July 2003 issue, all rights reserved