NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AFRICAN AMERICAN MUSIC TO SPONSOR RAMSEY LEWIS’ 50TH ANNIVERSARY PERFORMANCE AT TPAC ON APRIL 25
Tickets for Ramsey Lewis on sale now at TPAC.org
NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) is proud to announce the National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM) as the presenting sponsor of jazz legend Ramsey Lewis’ upcoming performance in the center’s James K. Polk Theater on Saturday, April 25 at 8:00 p.m.
Lewis, the iconic jazz great and National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master Award winner, will celebrate the 50th anniversary of two of his iconic live albums, “The ‘In’ Crowd” and “Hang On Ramsey,” by performing them in their entirety with his quartet. “The ‘In’ Crowd” was recorded May 13-15, 1965, at a club in Washington, D.C. “Hang On Ramsey” was recorded October 14-17, 1965, at a club in Hermosa Beach, California.
Given its commitment to celebrating the broad cultural influence of African Americans, the sponsorship is a perfect fit for the museum, said H. Beecher Hicks, III, NMAAM president and chief executive officer.
“Music brings us all together, so we’re extremely excited to be partnering with TPAC for this milestone event – celebrating 50 years of Mr. Lewis’ music,” said Hicks. “The National Museum of African American Music will highlight the influence of African Americans, like Mr. Ramsey, on our culture unlike any entity before it. Through the genius of his artistry, Ramsey Lewis significantly impacted American creativity and we are very proud to bring him here, to Music City. Not only is his music my music but his music is the epitome of America's music."
The National Museum of African American Music is expected to open a physical location in 2017 in a prominent development planned for downtown Nashville, but its programming, events, and outreach already have impacted Nashville’s music and creative communities.
“We are delighted to have our friends and future downtown neighbors at the museum as the presenting sponsor for Ramsey Lewis’ 50th anniversary performance,” said Kathleen O’Brien, TPAC president and chief executive officer. “TPAC’s work to present a diverse range of performing arts and provide arts education programming are in line with goals of the museum, and it’s our hope that this partnership is the first of many collaborations in the years to come.”
About Ramsey Lewis
Lewis, an iconic leader in the contemporary jazz movement for over 50 years, had an unforgettable sound and outgoing personality that allowed him to cross over to Pop and R&B charts. The Ramsey Lewis Trio, with bassist Eldee Young and percussionist Redd Holt, became a fixture in the Chicago jazz scene with their debut album, “Ramsey Lewis & His Gentlemen of Jazz,” in 1956.
For his swinging version of “The ‘In’ Crowd,” Lewis earned his first gold record, as well as a Grammy Award for Best Jazz Performance. He returned to the charts with versions of “Hang On Sloopy” and “Wade In The Water" from the follow up, "Hang On Ramsey.”
Throughout his career, Lewis joined forces with countless artists to create and innovate. In 1984, he collaborated with Nancy Wilson on “The Two of Us;” in 1988, he recorded with London’s Philharmonic Orchestra for the album “A Classic Encounter;” and in 1989, Lewis and Dr. Billy Taylor cut a set of piano duets in “We Meet Again.”
In 1995, Lewis launched the Urban Knights, in which he collaborated with other successful crossover stars, including Grover Washington, Jr., Earl Klugh, and Dave Koz. Two years later, Lewis added disc jockey to his resume, hosting a popular show on Chicago’s WNUA-FM that ran until 2009.
Lewis’ latest endeavor returns him to his electric roots. The three-time Grammy Award winner will release “Ramsey, Taking Another Look – Deluxe” this year on his new Sony/RED distributed label, Ramsey's House. On the album, Lewis rekindles his 1974 career-defining album “Sun Goddess” through a collection of re-recorded tracks from the original disc perfectly balanced with five new tunes. “Jungle Strut” has all the attitude of its 1974 original, and Lewis makes magic on the Fender Rhodes in “Tambura.” Rather than re-recording the title track “Sun Goddess,” Lewis re-edited the original studio recording featuring Earth, Wind and Fire. Also, Lewis and his Electric Band breathe new life into classic covers, such as the new high-octane rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Living for the City” and a tender interpretation of the timeless “Betcha By Golly Wow.”
Tickets to see Ramsey Lewis are on sale now at TPAC.org, by phone at (615) 782-4040, and at the TPAC Box Office, 505 Deaderick Street, in downtown Nashville.
About The National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM)
As the only museum dedicated to educating the world about the impact African Americans have made in music, the National Museum of African American Music serves to commemorate and honor the legacy and influence of rhythm on over 50 identified music genres and styles. Detailing the many dimensions of all types of music, NMAAM focuses on the musical impact that African Americans have on American culture. For more information, visit NMAAM.org, Facebook or Twitter: theNMAAM.