Jazz Lives On Detroit Radio

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    For a long time it has been lamented that there is no full time jazz station in Detroit, which is strange considering the size of the city and its rich jazz history.

    But all is not lost, thanks to WRCJ/90.9 FM. This radio station, which is part of PBS, plays plenty of jazz. We’re talking about real jazz.  Not boring pop jazz that almost completely lacks heart, soul and authenticity.

    WRCJ, which programs classical music during the daytime and jazz in the evening — it’s called “Classical Days and Jazzy Nights” — plays the real thing, great jazz artists rarely heard anywhere else on the radio today.

    The mellow sounds flow from 7 p.m. seven nights a week on an array of shows. The music is smooth and relaxing. You might want to visit the station’s website at WRCJ909FM.com for more detailed information.

    USHER says that in recent years he had been so much into being husband and father that his “swagger” was much less evident. But that was then. Now that his marriage and divorce from Tameka Foster — described by one source as “tumultuous” — is over, Usher is ready to return to form, so to speak.

    “I put my swagger down for a minute, but I didn’t put it away,” said Usher. “I had checked out, but now it’s time to get it back.”

    His new album, “Raymond vs. Raymond,” will, he says, make us know what he is talking about. It is slated for March 30 release.

    Usually, artists “have some years on them” before they write autobiographies, but some, like LL Cool J, Malcolm-Jamal Warner and Queen Latifah, tell their story early. However, Rihanna, whose widely publicized relationship fallout with Chris Brown could be described as “infamy,” said the public should not expect a book from her.

    “People know enough about my personal life already,” she said wryly.

    Thought you’d like to see a picture of the Black Eyed Peas taken during their recent concert at The Palace of Auburn Hills. (A second photo is on page D-2.) The won’t-stop-selling “The E.N.D.” is the perfect album at the perfect time. It’s exciting and loaded with hits: “I Gotta Feeling,” “Rock That Body,” “Boom Boom Pow,” “Imma Be” and more.

    BIG BOI (real name: Antwon Patton) could win an award in the “Most Original Album Title” category, if such an award existed. (He is, of course, half of the Outkast duo.) The title of the next Big Boi album will be “Sir Luscious Left Foot: Son of Chico Dusty.”

    One of the longest  titles in popular music is “When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes,” written by Holland-Dozier-Holland. The late-1963 release was the first major hit for the Supremes (No. 2 R&B, No. 23 Pop).

    In the interest of giving back to the community — and, of course, expanding her business horizons — Beyoncé Knowles has opened an establishment at which women (and men if interested) can learn hairstyling, skin care techniques, makeup design, etc., and hopefully subsequently gain employment in those fields.

    It is called Beyoncé’s Cosmetology Center at Phoenix House, located in Brooklyn.

    It was a bad move to cast John Amos (James Evans on “Good Times,” the adult Kunta Kinte in “Roots,” etc.) as a gay man on the popular (deservedly so)  “Two and a Half Men” sitcom.

    Nothing wrong with being gay (or not gay or anything in between), but Amos is totally unconvincing in this role. Amos and his partner, described as “old queens” at one point, are embarrassing and utilize every gay stereotype imaginable.

    Maybe John Amos is strapped for cash. But even so…

    BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW…that in 1974 Diahann Carroll had an album on the Motown label.

    MEMORIES: “Everything I Miss at Home” (Cherrelle), “Don’t Play That Song” (Are­tha Franklin), “I Am Love” (Jennifer Holliday), “Key to the World” (L.J. Reynolds), “I Wanna Get Next to You” (Rose Royce), “It’s Gonna Take a Miracle” (Deniece Williams), “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)” (Barbra Streisand and Donna Summer), “Misty Blue” (Dorothy Moore), “Don’t Walk Away” (Jade), “Reaching For the Sky” (Peabo Bryson).

    BLESSINGS to Paula Bouyer, John Telford, Barbra Roseman, David Humphries, Dereka Blackmon, Ronald Rhodes, Rick Wade, Cliff Russell, Willy Wilson, Delores Wyatt, Anita Baker, Jim Burns, Walter Bridgeforth, Claudreen Jackson and Luther Keith.

    WORDS OF THE WEEK, from Winston Churchill: “It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time.”

    Let the music play!

    (Steve Holsey can be reached at Svh517@aol.com and PO Box 02843, Detroit, MI 48202.)


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