Tag Archives | Grammy Award
Betty Carter

September 26th in African American History – Betty Carter

September 26, 1998 Betty Carter, jazz singer, died. Carter was born Lillie Mae Jones on May 16, 1929 in Flint, Michigan but grew up in Detroit. She studied piano at the Detroit Conservatory and by the age of 16 was singing with Charlie Parker. In 1958, Carter released her first solo album, “Out There with […]

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Willard Christopher “Will” Smith

September 25th in African American History – Willard Christopher “Will” Smith

September 25, 1968 Willard Christopher “Will” Smith, rapper, actor and film producer, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While still in his teens, he began rapping and collaborating with Jeff Townes and “DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince” was born. The combination was a hip-hop hit during the 1980s and early 1990s creating such songs […]

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Ray Charles Robinson

September 23rd in African American History – Ray Charles Robinson

September 23, 1930 Ray Charles Robinson (Ray Charles), R&B, gospel and blues vocalist and pianist, was born in Albany, Georgia. At the age of 5, Charles began to lose his sight and was completely blind by the age of 7. In 1943, he began to play gigs around Tallahassee and Jacksonville, Florida. In 1947, he […]

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John William Coltrane

September 23rd in African American History – John William Coltrane

September 23, 1926 John William Coltrane, jazz saxophonist and composer, was born in Hamlet, North Carolina. In 1945, he enlisted in the United States Navy and played in the Navy jazz band. After returning to civilian life, he began freelancing around Philadelphia. From October, 1955 through April, 1957 Coltrane was part of the Miles Davis […]

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Riley “B. B.” King

September 16th in African American History – Riley “B. B.” King

September 16, 1925 Riley “B. B.” King, blues guitarist and singer/songwriter, was born in Itta Bena, Mississippi. In 1948, King moved to Memphis and worked as a singer and disc jockey at the local R&B radio station. King began recording in 1949 and by the 1950s had become one of the most important names in […]

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Barrence Eugene Carter (Barry White)

September 12th in African American History – Barrence Eugene Carter (Barry White)

September 12, 1944 Barrence Eugene Carter (Barry White), singer, songwriter and record producer, was born in Galveston, Texas. He began his musical career in the early 1960s in singing groups before going out on his own in the mid-1960s. He got his big break, producing a female group he had discovered called Love Unlimited. Their […]

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Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown

September 10th in African American History – Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown

September 10, 2005 Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, blues musician, died. Brown was born April 18, 1924 in Vinton, Louisiana. He began his professional career in 1945 and had his recording debut in 1949 with “Mary is Fine” and “My Time is Expensive”. During the 1960s, Brown made several appearances on the television show “Hee Haw” and […]

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