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It’s Handy Fest At FLPL…Come Feel, See And Hear The Music

By  | July 20, 2019 | Filed under: News

FLORENCE-It’s Handy Fest in the Shoals!  FLPL’s events this year include old favorites and some new performances. Featuring our new exhibit, I Have a Voice: Tennessee’s African American Musical Heritage.

Image result for Jazz It Up With Trash microwave dave Jazz It Up With Trash
Monday, July 22, 10:00 pm
Youth Services Area and Colonnade
Enjoy this annual Handy Fest event at the library! Kids can make make their own musical instruments from recycled materials and then play along with Microwave Dave! For ages three and older.

This In Harmony With Nature Litter-Free Event is sponsored by
Florence Recycling Center, Florence-Lauderdale Public Library, Keep the Shoals Beautiful, and Shoals Earth Month, Inc.

Image result for Check Out the Blues Check Out the Blues
Monday, July 22, 2:00-4:00 pm
Colonnade
Enjoy live music by the Jazz Allstars in this annual Handy Fest event! Sponsored by the Friends of the Library.

Image result for Reddick Pernell Cunningham Reddick Pernell Cunningham Plays Familiar Tunes
Tuesday, July 23, 5:00 pm
Colonnade
Piano player Reddick Pernell Cunningham will play popular songs from jazz, ragtime, and other genres. This Handy Fest event is part of the library’s I Have a Voice series on African American music. Sponsored by the Friends of the Library.

Reddick Pernell Cunningham is a classically-trained pianist and musician. His awards and honors include:
1st Place Winner at the National Tourgee’ Debose National Piano Festival at Baton Rouge, LA
The Number One Outstanding Collaborative Pianist at the Continental Society’s Leontyne V. Price National Vocal Arts Festival/Competition – Birmingham, AL
Sixth Avenue Baptist Community Concert Series Recitalist under the auspices of the Sixth Avenue Baptist Cultural Arts Lyceum Series
Pianist at the Closing convocation of NANM( National Association of Negro Musician) Washington, D.C.

Image result for Dr. Eric Kirkman Don’t Hang Up with Dr. Eric Kirkman
Thursday, July 25, 1:00 pm
Colonnade
Dr. Eric Kirkman will present his one-man play Don’t Hang Up, which uses music to tell about the struggles and victories of one man determined to pass on his legacy to his granddaughter. The play traces the history of African and African American music. Dr. Kirkman is a venerated musician and educator, with over 20 years of experience performing and teaching music. This Handy Fest event is part of the library’s I Have a Voice series on African American music.

This project is sponsored by the Alabama Humanities Foundation, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

 I Have a Voice:
Tennessee’s African American Musical Heritage
Exhibit on Display Now

FLPL is excited to host a special exhibit called I Have a Voice: Tennessee’s African American Musical Heritage. The exhibit is located on the 2nd floor of the library.

The Volunteer State has been the birthplace of some of the most influential music in the world, from the Beale Street blues clubs in Memphis, to the R&B scene on Nashville’s Jefferson Street and Knoxville’s Gem Theatre. And much of that music has close ties to the Shoals, with W.C. Handy having played and composed in Memphis for several years and with Sun Records having a close connection with Florence.

The history of African American music follows the hardship of slavery through today. American slaves adapted their African ancestors’ music to hand clapping, singing, the fiddle, and the African–derived banjo. Expressing their sorrows from bondage, and joy for their ultimate deliverance, these enslaved persons found an original, musical voice sung in their spirituals and folk music. This voice has left a monumental cultural stamp on American music, including blues, ragtime, jazz, gospel, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, and soul music. In turn, this music has influenced and enriched music around the world.

Organized by the Tennessee State Museum, I Have a Voice explores the music of legends such as Bessie Smith, B.B. King, DeFord Bailey, and Tina Turner.

FLPL’s hosting of I Have A Voice, as well as the accompanying programming series, is sponsored by the Alabama Humanities Foundation, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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