PHILADELPHIA, April 28, 2016 – After meeting with jazz educators, musicians and experts today at the iconic Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts about steps to take to better promote and preserve jazz’s legacy in the commonwealth, Sen. Vince Hughes said he will work to establish the Council on Jazz.
The vehicle for making the council a reality: Senate Bill 1234.
“We have great organizations throughout Pennsylvania that work to promote jazz, like the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts has done for 50 years,” Hughes said today following his meeting with the music genre’s experts and caretakers. “But their efforts would flourish and more people would learn about jazz in Pennsylvania if a state organization helped to direct each effort.
“Whether big band, contemporary or ragtime; Dixieland or cool, Pennsylvania has played a key role in the history of jazz.”
Under SB 1234, the five-member Council on Jazz would mirror the PA Council on the Arts. Council members would be appointed by the governor and the General Assembly.
It would be responsible for promoting, marketing, encouraging, educating, protecting and preserving jazz in the commonwealth. The council would award grants that fulfill the responsibilities of the council, and it would get administrative support from the Council on the Arts.
Sen. Hughes said it is important to introduce his new bill now because April is Jazz Appreciation Month, or JAM.
“Jazz is cool. Doing what we can to ensure its legacy is even cooler, cats,” Hughes, a jazz aficionado, said. “Let’s put Senate Bill 1234 ‘in the mix’ and get this done.”
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Contact: Mark Shade