276 Bridge Street (INDOORS)

Carnival in Trinidad

with Etienne Charles

Trinidad born jazz trumpeter Etienne Charles will transport the audience to Carnival in Trinidad through a program that weaves together short films with a lecture. The program will delve into the experience of Carnival, as a dialogue between the past and the present. Etienne will explore African based musical elements and traditions, discuss the masquerading traditions and the meaning behind the costumes and characters, the brass band tradition, and the evolution of the steel pans. He will illustrate the relationship between the Afro-descended musics of the Caribbean region and New Orleans— the birthplace of jazz. The sounds and visual artistry of carnival in Etienne’s home country of Trinidad share a connection with the exuberant sounds, rhythms, and Black Masking Indians that are part of New Orleans’ carnival. Etienne will highlight how the roots of the music that evolved into jazz, which he reconnects with in his compositions and performances, express the resilience and innovation of oppressed peoples— creating beauty and joy out of tragedy and struggle.
276 Bridge Street (INDOORS)

Arts, Faith & Activism

A Conversation about Climate Justice- with Rev Sekou and Rev. Mariam White-Hammond

Rev. Sekou and Rev. Mariama White Hammond will share their experiences and perspective on working for social and climate justice, highlighting the connection between arts, faith and activism. Also present will be leaders of Springfield’s Climate Justice Initiative who will share the experience of Springfield residents and discuss efforts being made to move Springfield forward in addressing socio-economic and health disparities, while also addressing the issue of climate change.

Rev. Sekou's music reflects the African American roots of American music through soul, funk and gospel music. He delivers a rousing, spiritually moving, and politically charged performance that has been referred to as "one-part protest rally, one-part Pentecostal tent revival, and one-part late night juke joint".
His study of theology and religion and his fervor for social justice has led him to be actively involved in the Black Lives Matter Movement, as well as other actions related to social and climate justice. He has shown up at places and times of crisis, such as with Hurricane Katrina, the earthquake in Haiti, and protests in Ferguson, MO and Charlottesville, VA to lend his voice for justice, peace and healing. He speaks to these issues through the written and spoken word, as well as through music.

Reverand Mariama White-Hammond from the New Roots African Methodist Episcopal Church in the Boston neighborhood of Dorchester, and newly appointed Chief of Energy, Environment and Open Spaces for the City of Boston, is an activist and advocate for ecological and social justice, youth engagement, and Spirit-filled organizing. As former director of Project HIP-HOP (Highways Into the Past- History, Organizing and Power), she used the arts as a tool to raise awareness for social issues from juvenile incarceration to funding for public transportation. She has received numerous awards including the Barr Fellowship, the Celtics Heroes Among Us, The Roxbury Founders Day Award and the Boston NAACP Image award. She is committed to engaging the faith community, and particularly the Black church, on climate change and ecological justice issues.
276 Bridge Street (INDOORS)

New Orleans Voodoo, Music and Carnival

the socio-cultural background of Charles Neville

This lecture connects to the exhibition “Horn Man: The Life and Musical Legacy of Charles Neville” currently on display at the Springfield Wood Museum in collaboration with the Blues to Green Jazz and Roots Festival. Dr. Ina Fandrich, a cultural historian and Voodoo expert from New Orleans, will explore with us the colorful, magical, but also very violent and dangerous world in which Mr. Neville grew up. The Grammy-award-winning saxophonist was born into a legendary family of musicians in a city that prides itself to be the birthplace of Jazz, Blues, Gospel, and Rock’n’Roll. During his childhood the air was always filled with mesmerizing African polyrhythms, blending with the aroma of spicy seafood dishes. There was the uplifting beat of boisterous brass and marching bands, the joyful noise of spirited gospel choirs, the hypnotic call-and-response chants of the Mardi Gras Indian Carnival societies, and the wailing sounds of the Blues. In New Orleans, successful musicians like Charles and his three brothers, who founded together in 1977 the famous Neville Brothers Band, needed to be proficient in all local genres of music, and that they were to perfection, bringing every audience worldwide to their feet to dance. Dr. Fandrich will introduce us to New Orleans’ rich black Carnival and African-based spiritual traditions that are at the center of much of the musical repertoire of the Neville Brothers.

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New Location!

The Springfield Jazz & Roots Festival takes place on August 14, 2021 from 1-10PM in the streets surrounding Stearns Square, between Worthington and Bridge Streets.

About Us

This festival is produced by Blues To Green, a nonprofit organization that harnesses music and the arts to celebrate community and culture, build shared purpose, and catalyze social and environmental change.
Copyright © 2022 Blues To Green Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Site by Laudable Productions
AUGUST 14, 2021
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