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Kashif & Friends Celebrate Black Music Month
By Zon D'Amour, Contributing Writer
Published June 9, 2016
Singer, songwriter and producer Kashif

Singer, songwriter and producer Kashif

Nearly forty years after former President Jimmy Carter signed a bill declaring June as Black Music Month, singer, songwriter and producer Kashif has orchestrated his second annual concert series.

In 1979, Kashif had the honor of being a part of the first inaugural concert at the White House as a member of the band, BT Express.

Evelyn "Champagne" King, Kashif and Myracle Holloway perform at the 2014 Kashif and Friends Black Music Month celebration.

Evelyn “Champagne” King, Kashif and Myracle Holloway perform at the 2014 Kashif and Friends Black Music Month celebration.

Over the course of four shows between June 17 and 18, the six-time Grammy nominated artist and his fellow musical colleagues will take attendees through the history of music including the jazz, RnB and rock n roll genres.

When asked what sparked the idea for the event Kashif shared, “I’ve been fortunate to work in so many facets of the business I thought it was important to bring some solidarity for all of the participants in black music: artists, songwriters, producers, record labels, executives, radio stations, retailers etc. It was important that there be some type of event that brought all of these people together so that we could have and develop initiatives that would be a win for everyone involved, that’s why I established ‘Kashif’s Black Music Month Celebration’.

On what differentiates this event from other concerts, Kashif shared his connection to many of the participating artists. Kashif and friends wrote and produced “Love Changes”, a duet with singer Meli’sa Morgan, he also wrote and produced “So Fine” for Howard Johnson. Attendees of the show will also be able to take a trip down memory lane with Ray Parker Jr., Dawn Lewis and Angie Fisher to name a few.

Kathy Sledge, Kashif and Deniece Williams treated attendees to a surprise performance at the 2014 festivities

Kathy Sledge, Kashif and Deniece Williams treated attendees to a surprise performance at the 2014 festivities

“We’re all of the same mindset that we wanted to get together and do something to benefit people that participated in black music with the hopes of empowering the next generation.”

He’s currently directing a ten-part documentary on the history of RnB music. “We’ve been filming for two years, we have another two years of filming and editing to go. We’re also re-recording 200 of the top RnB songs of all time for the film, it’s a huge project.” Having gone through the foster care system, another passion project near and dear to the musician’s heart is ‘Khasif University’ which has academic programs for the youth in foster care.

“There’s no grass growing under my feet” added the youthful 56-year-old.

Kashif and Friends at the 2014 Black Music Month Celebration

Kashif and Friends at the 2014 Black Music Month Celebration

To purchase tickets for “Kashif and Friend’s Black Music Month Celebration” on June 17 and 18, visit: catalinajazzclub.com

Categories: Entertainment | Music | News (Entertainment) | Uncategorized
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