The Charenée Wade Quintet brings the music of Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson to the Kelly Strayhorn Theater in East Liberty, Saturday night March 2 at 8pm
Mensah Wali is the Artistic Director of the Kente Arts Alliance, which is presenting Charenée Wade as a part of this year’s concert season.
Wali: This Presentation is based on (Charenée’s) most recent CD, which is called “Offering,” which is one of the tunes that Gil did back in the early ‘70’s. She is the first woman, to my knowledge, to undertake the presentation of his music, and so we thought it a good idea to bring that to the community in Pittsburgh.
Hanley: Why did Gil Scott-Heron matter in the 70’s and how is it he can matter, today?
Wali: I like to use the term that he used for himself – he was a “bluesologist.” Gil and the Last Poets are the icons of the late 60’s, early 70’s. He spoke to political issues, social issues, cultural issues that rang a bell in a large segment of the community. They weren’t the typical love songs, but they loved black people. He spoke to them in all of the different complexities of the times. A lot of that is still relevant, today. I think Charenée’s presentation is very much on time in terms of bringing a certain message of what I call the “Old Times,” and bringing it up to date.
Kente Arts presents the Charenée Wade Quintet and the Music of Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson, Saturday night, March 2nd at 8 at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater - Tickets and Information at KenteArts.org