John Malveaux of
Georgia Laster Branch (National Association of Negro Musicians) 16th Annual Spiritual Concert on February 27, 2016 in Los Angeles was devoted to Jester Joseph Hairston, an American composer, songwriter, arranger, choral conductor, and actor. Jester Joseph Hairston was a leading expert on Negro spirituals and choral music. James S. Bryant, vice president of Georgia Laster Branch, was program host.
The program began with a sing along of I WANT JESUS TO WALK WITH ME followed by the Holman Singers (4) delivering WALK TOGETHER CHILDREN and ELIJAH ROCK. Dr. Hansonia Caldwell offered pre-screening comments for the 60 minute documentary “AMEN the life and music of JESTER HAIRSTON”. See www.jesterhairston.com. The documentary is an invaluable resource to understand the history of African Americans in music, film, and television in the United States and the international appreciation of an original American art form. Dr. Caldwell also offered post screening comments and Q&A. The scholarly ‘edu-taiment’ program concluded with a sing along of Jester Hairston "Amen," from the film Lilies of the Field and a 1963 hit for the Impressions. See pictures of Dr. Caldwell and Jester Hairston.