Sunday, June 17, 2018

National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) Father's Day Message

[Alexandria, VA] The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) National President Clarence E. Cox, III released the following Father's Day message.
"The men and women of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives want to wish a Happy Father's Day to all of our fathers. In addition, we want thank the men in law enforcement who risk their lives every day to protect all Americans. Many of these men do not only save lives on a daily basis, but are amazing dads too. Dads play a pivotal role in our society mentoring the next generation of law enforcement officers and the people they serve. Thank you for your strength, bravery, and dedication which inspires us all."

About the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives 
Since 1976, The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) has served as the conscience of law enforcement by being committed to justice by action. NOBLE represents over 3,000 members internationally, who are primarily African-American chief executive officers of law enforcement agencies at federal, state, county and municipal levels, other law enforcement administrators, and criminal justice practitioners. For more information, visit

Saturday, June 16, 2018

DC Metro HBCU Alumni Alliance: Register Today for HBCU Alumni 5K Run/Walk June 30, 2018

Wisconsin Public Radio: Excerpt from "Hiawatha's Wedding Feast" (7:15) by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Afro-British Composer

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912)

June 16, 2018

Composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, born in 1875, was an English composer and conductor who had a rather short musical life. In 1898 Coleridge-Taylor, premiered his cantata for chorus and orchestra titled Hiawatha's Wedding Feast, Op. 30, No. 1. 

Based upon the poem The Song of Hiawatha by American writer Henry Wadsworth-Longfellow, this performance of the work features the Royal Choral Society and Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent.

John Malveaux: Gospel Songversation: Wednesday June 20, 2018, California African American Museum, 7-9 PM

Choir "Civil Rights is the Issue" photograph in front of San Francisco City Hall 
[David Johnson photograph archive], BANC PIC 2017.001—PIC.. © The Regents of the University of California, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

John Malveaux of 

California African American Museum

“Conversation and song come together to echo the narratives presented in the exhibit How Sweet the Sound: Gospel Music in Los Angeles. Panelists include Dr. Margaret Douroux legendary composer and CEO of the Heritage Music Foundation, Rev. Calvin Rhone, recording artist and Los Angeles chapter representative of the Gospel Music Workshop of America, Annette May, gospel singer and longtime friend of the late Rev. James Cleveland, and Donald Webber, gospel musician. The panel provides a historical narration of gospel music in Los Angeles combined with firsthand stories while the audience is invited to sing along, becoming an impromptu choir carrying the history from voice to heart."


John Malveaux: James Newton & Vida L. Brown Present "In Conversation: The Eric Dolphy Story" at California African American Museum June 14, 2018

 Dr. James Newton, his wife & John Malveaux

Pamela Smith Hudson, "Eric Dolphy's House" & John Malveaux

John Malveaux of  

June 14, 2018 attended In Conversation: James Newton and Vida L Brown on the Eric Dolphy Story at California African American Museum (CAAM).  Composer, musicologist, flutist, and UCLA professor James Newton  came into possession of multi-instrumentalist and composer Eric Dolphy's papers and music from pianist, educator and composer Hale Smith.

Unfortunately, Eric Dolphy died at age 36 in Germany. Dr. James Newton has deposited Dolphy's papers and music in the Library of Congress and he will co-produce previously unreleased music by Dolphy with 2019 release. Artist Pamela Smith Hudson two paintings titled Eric Dolphy's House is also on exhibit at CAAM. See pic of Dr. James Newton with attorney wife and pic of Pamela Smith Hudson and Eric Dolphy's House.

Friday, June 15, 2018

South Shore Opera Goes to the Movies under Leslie B. Dunner 4 PM Sunday, June 24

June 24 South Shore Opera Goes to the Movies.  Leslie B. Dunner leads a cast of operatic singers and the South Shore chamber orchestra in arias, duets and ensembles from operas by favorite composers from Handel to Puccini, as used or adapted in favorite movies. A set of clips from several of the movies will also be screened. This free concert will be held at South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 South Shore Drive at 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 24. 

Sergio Mims: The Guardian: Cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason wins two Classic Brits

 Sheku Kanneh-Mason won male artist of the year and a critics’ choice award. 
(Photograph: Glen Thomas)

Sheku Kanneh-Mason, the young cellist who performed at last month’s royal wedding, has won two Classic Brit awards.

The 18-year-old stole the show in many eyes as he performed Maria Theresia von Paradis’ Sicilienne, Franz Schubert’s Ave Maria and Gabriel Faure’s Apres un Reve, as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle signed the register, becoming the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

On Wednesday Kanneh-Mason was celebrated at the Classic Brits, an awards ceremony that returns, its organisers say, “reformatted and refreshed” after a five-year hiatus.

He won male artist of the year and a critics’ choice award, capping what has been a meteoric rise since he made history in 2016 by becoming the first black musician to win the BBC Young Musician of the Year. Since then the Nottingham teenager has performed at the Baftas and the Proms and released an album, Inspiration, which is still at the top of the classical music charts.

Kosmos Ensemble: UK debut of Errollyn Wallen's concerto, Chichester Cathedral, 5 July

Kosmos Ensemble to give the UK premiere of Errollyn Wallen's new triple concerto, at Chichester Cathedral, 5th July

Errollyn Wallen

The much-hailed, category-defying Kosmos join forces with British composer Errollyn Wallen and the Worthing Symphony Orchestra for Wallen's "Concerto for Kosmos and Orchestra", in the headlining concert of the Festival of Chichester
Typically, concertos have a been a way to showcase the virtuosity of a soloist (every so often, multiple soloists) set against the spectacular, multi-dimensional canvas of an orchestra. Typically. But there is little that is typical about the Kosmos Ensemble. They are, indeed, a brilliantly untypical ensemble, who play untypical repertoire and with an untypical philosophy. The violinist (Harriet Mackenzie), violist (Meg Hamilton) and accordionist (Milos Milivojevic) who comprise Kosmos (who have, individually and collectively, virtuosity to spare) are fascinated to explore the relationships between classical, folk and world musics. Errollyn Wallen - one of the UK's most in-demand composers - has similarly been much-admired for her wide stylistic palette and her ability to somehow connect different musical worlds in ways that make perfect sense. So Wallen's new "Concerto for Kosmos and Orchestra" was always going to be about more than virtuosity.

"Classical music has often been inspired by other genres, whether that be Dvorak's deep forays into folk music, Vaughan Williams noting down the songs he heard travelling the British Isles or Osvaldo Golijov channelling music of the Middle East," says Kosmos violinist Harriet Mackenzie, "So we are excited to work with a composer who herself has such vast musical horizons. We knew she would create an amazing dialogue between the three of us and a full orchestra. The piece becomes a conversation about what music is and where it comes from, right there on the stage. Traditionally, concertos would have had an element of improvisation for the soloists, even if that was just a cadenza. Errollyn has been brave enough to let us improvise in the concerto, giving us a tangible freedom. So in this piece, I feel there is a real sense of continuing and expanding traditions as well as challenging and expanding boundaries. It's fantastically exciting to play and, we hope, to hear!"

Kosmos, each of whose members also has a thriving solo career, has enjoyed explosive success since launching nearly 10 years ago. Their two recordings have sold extremely well (with a third to be announced soon), while The Times's Richard Morrison wrote of the group, "(They have) telepathic rapport, dazzling virtuosity, serious scholarship, intellectual curiosity and impeccable musicianship. I defy you not to be mesmerised."

The new concerto had its world premiere last month, at the Jersey Liberation Festival, with Kosmos joined by the Jersey Chamber Orchestra. "It was a sensational experience," says Mackenzie, "The audience reaction was incredibly warm and we all felt part of a very special and thrilling new work. We can't wait to bring it back to Britain." The Chichester performance will be its first in the UK, and there will be subsequent performances later in the year at the Tintern Abbey Festival and the Beaumaris Festival (both with the Welsh Chamber Orchestra).

Watch here, the Kosmos Ensemble play the World Premiere of Errollyn Wallen's new triple concerto, at the Jersey Liberation Festival.

And watch their encore, Libertango.

The Kosmos Ensemble will play Wallen's "Concerto for Kosmos and Orchestra" on Thursday 5th July, 7.30pm, at Chichester Cathedral, at the Festival of Chichester.

Comment by email:
Thank you Bill!  All very best wishes,  Errollyn  [Errollyn Wallen]

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Cheryl Lynne Skinner: "Open Your Heart" is a short musical meditation on YouTube

Cheryl Lynne Skinner writes:

For my second  CD release I had the honor to work with some talented visual artists.  These artist created artwork for each of the song titles in the "Shades of Blue" cd.  One of those artists Sandra Charles  who just published her new website and her work is stunning!  Please check out her gallery honoring African American women in all their Glory!  I look forward to collaborating with Sandra again in KY soon.
Also. while you are enjoying beautiful things give "Open Your Heart" a short musical meditation from Cheryl Lynne Skinner  now on YouTube a listen.

Cheryl Lynne Skinner

Houston Ebony Opera Guild Juneteenth Concert June 23, 3 PM, Westbury UMC

NOBLE Announces Attorney General Eric Holder Leadership Award 2018

NOBLE announces the Eric Holder Leadership Award that will be awarded for extraordinary law enforcement leadership performed in the line of duty. It distinguishes a law enforcement chief executive whose leadership goes above and beyond the call of duty. This award recognizes law enforcement leaders who have made a positive and significant difference in their agency, community, and to the law enforcement profession. This award applauds those in leadership who have significantly helped bridge the gap that sometimes exists between the community and law enforcement.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Gerard Robinson: An Environment for Children where Opportunities Abound

Gerard Robinson

Gerard Robinson, Executive Director, Center for
Advancing Opportunity, writes:

Any discussion about society, poverty or class is 
incomplete without education as a fundamental marker. 
Today’s debates over violence, budgets, jobs, and 
national security are hollow without recognizing that 
absent a quality education, no American has a chance 
to impact these issues, or benefit from policies designed 
to solve the most pernicious issues of the day.

I know. Growing up in Los Angeles were three avenues 
one could follow toward the future: violence, 
academics, and sports. Although my parents 
wanted the academic path, I had other plans. Sports 
was going to give me the life I wanted for myself 
- athletic scholarships that would pay for my college 
education and provide opportunities for me to 
become a professional athlete bringing the literal 
fame and fortune that I desperately wanted.

Then I got hurt my senior year of high school. And like 
so many of us, my best laid plans were 
interrupted. The opportunities I wanted were 
suddenly gone. Because I was focused on sports 
and not academics in school, I was stuck. My 
indifference to school and learning, no real knowledge, 
skills or proficiencies of any type, all proposed the 
 proverbial question of “Now what?”

For me, the answer was El Camino Community 
College in Torrance, California. I worked as a box boy at 
Ralph’s Grocery Store and started classes at El Camino 
where I promptly failed the math and English placement 
exams. (One could argue I should never have 
graduated high school in such a condition… many of us 
still do).  It was a struggle. I was academically far 
behind many classmates. In essence, I was doing high 
school as a college student.

So there I was - a statistic. A black man in college 
but not prepared at all for the academic rigor higher 
education presents us. I watched my peers not struggle 
through freshman year. I watched them participate 
in class discussions with background knowledge that I 
didn’t even know existed. The knowledge gap was real.

But El Camino offered me exactly the opportunities I 
needed to improve myself at exactly the time I needed 
them. California’s community colleges happen to 
have been strong at that time. The grit I 
developed by persevering and the remedial 
coursework allowed me to get my Associate of Arts 
degree in three years. Without that, I would not have 
had the opportunity to move to Washington, DC 
to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree from Howard 
University. And without my BA from Howard, I would 
not have had the chance to earn a Master of 
Education from Harvard.

I do not offer this up as an “If-I can-do-it-anybody-
can” Horatio Alger tale – although if it serves that 
purpose, too, fine with me. I offer it, more importantly, 
to point out that so much in life, and virtually 
everything in education – from young children in 
elementary school through adults in need of new skills 
training – comes down to opportunities; opportunities 
they need to access a high-quality education.

For elementary and secondary school students, 
that means ensuring quality learning opportunities 
within and outside of our traditional schools and school 
districts. Magnet schools, dual enrollment programs, 
and career and technical learning centers in the 
case of the former; charter schools and scholarships 
for private schools latter. The beauty of charters is that 
they offer opportunities for learning to many students 
placed at-risk that are often desperately needed and do 
not exist in some traditional public school districts. 
Perhaps access to a charter school would have 
ensured I mastered the learning I needed in high 
school and accelerated my course. I was lucky. Millions 
more are not. The parental choice ecosystem -- 
scholarship tax credits, education savings accounts, 
and virtual learning opportunities -- all must be on the 
table to ensure that all educational opportunities are 
available families that need them most.

I believe we must also ensure greater access to new 
kinds of educational pathways which ensure new 
skills and training, apprenticeship and workforce 
programs, both publicly and privately funded. 
There are community colleges that offer the kind of 
accessible, affordable learning that opens innumerable 
doors to future success. We must ensure that the 
great ones thrive, and insist that those that fail to 
deliver on solid outcomes improve. The same is true 
for all post-secondary institutions.

That is why I am focused today on faculty and 
students at Historically Black Colleges and 
Universities (HBCUs) by supporting the research, 
 scholarships, campus conversations, data, and 
convening thought leaders, activists and students 
at an annual summit. As such, we have successfully 
invested in and launched three research centers -- 
one each at Winston-Salem State University, 
Texas Southern University, and Albany State 
University -- to develop research-based solutions 
to the most challenging issues in education, criminal 
justice, and entrepreneurship. We believe our 
constituency is people living in fragile communities 
and they are members of all races, ethnicities, and 
 religions. Our work is part of creating an 
environment where quality education is available 
and accessible from preschool through 
 post-secondary institutions, where opportunities 
abound, so that every student can achieve their