Sunday, September 30, 2007

Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Featured In The Big Band Library Newsletter...

Thanks To Bro. Chris Popa The Founder And Creator Of The Big Band Library For This Great Buzz Of An Article!!!

Remember The First Annual Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Takes Place Oct. 19-21, 2007 In Memphis,Tn...

Go To the Official Website to find out more and how you can support this historical undertaking!!!
~Bro. Ron a.k.a. R2C2H2 Tha Artivist

Rhythm Is (Still) Their Business
Jimmie Lunceford [ above ] died in 1947, but his music lives on thanks to several current endeavors. First is a resurrected Jimmie Lunceford Legacy Orchestra; surprisingly, it's not in the United States, but, rather, in Holland. Another is a new CD by the Orchestra, "Rhythm Is Our Business," made up of 16 tracks. And third is a plan to hold a yearly Lunceford celebration in his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee.

According to publicity, "It was only a chance discovery of the original Lunceford band book with charts and notations in 1999, gathering dust in the Smithsonian library, that inspired Dutch saxophonist and band-leader Robert Veen to embark on an epic 8 year journey to resurrect the JLO, to record and release the first 'new' Lunceford recordings in 60 years."
Though the reformed band first appeared two years ago at the North Sea Jazz Festival held in The Netherlands, their activity is just now taking off. For example, in February 2007, they performed at the Paradiso Club in Amsterdam, and, last month, presented a three-hour show, "A Night At the Cotton Club," at the 10th annual Jazz Op Tilt Festival in Giessenburg. Additional details are at the webpage

Meanwhile, in Memphis, sponsors were being sought for a three-day celebration, "The Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival," to take place October 19th through the 21st at various locations around the city.

According to organizer Ronald Herd II, planned events include an opening symposium at Manassas High School, discussing Lunceford's life and career; a tribute concert; and a wreath-laying ceremony at Lunceford's gravesite in Elmwood Cemetery. For more information, view the website

It was stated that the purpose of the Festival is "To Honor And Bring Awareness To The Forgotten And Impressive Legacy And Achievements Of Jimmie Lunceford," credited, among other things, for being "The First High School Band Orchestra Leader/Conductor In The History Of The Memphis City Schools."

Author Eddy Determeyer, in his recent Lunceford biography, Rhythm Is Our Business (Ann Arbor, MI: The University of Michigan Press, 2006), wrote that "In 1927, Lunceford was one of the world's first, if not the first to teach jazz at a school."

Lunceford had been hired that year to teach English, Spanish, music, and athletics at Manassas High School in Memphis. He organized a student band there, called The Chickasaw Syncopators, which took its name from the African-American neighborhood where most of the students lived.
"Jimmie Lunceford taught his students jazz history, dance band harmony, dynamics and blending, the use of mutes, how to build a solo, and rhythm," Determeyer explained. "He used a Victrola to have them analyze how other, well-established dance orchestras performed."
Under Lunceford's leadership, The Chickasaw Syncopators turned professional and, by 1933, were billed as his own orchestra.

To Read The Big Band Library Newsletter In Its Entirety Go To The Following Link:

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Informative Podcast About Jimmie Lunceford...

Big Band Serenade Episode 25...Jimmie Lunceford

Tha Artivist Says: Although The Host Doesn't Pronounce The Great Jimmie Lunceford's Name Correctly (He Calls Him Jimmie Lansford) This Podcast Is Still Very Informative And Enjoyable Which Equals Edutaining!!! Please Take A Listen For Yourself:

*Don't Forget The Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Oct. 19-21, 2007*

Please Visit The Official Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Website To Find Out More:

Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Original Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra In Action

A True Fan Of Jimmie Lunceford's Wrote:
The Jimmie Lunceford Orch. playing Nagasaki. My guess is that this was probably filmed around 1934. The middle trumpeter is Sy Oliver, one of the greatest jazz arrangers of all time. The talent here is extraordinary, Where can you find players today who can match those in this band?

Tha Artivist Says: This is another reason why everyone should be supporting the first annual Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival...Get off the sidelines of history and get in the game today!!!

copyrighted image by r2c2h2
Please Visit The Official Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Website To Find Out More:

Thursday, September 6, 2007

R2C2H2 Late Summer /Early Fall 2007 Newsletter: Help The First Annual Jimme Lunceford Jamboree Festival 10/19-10/21, 2007...

"Jimmie Lunceford Has The Best Of All Bands. Duke [Ellington] Is Great, [Count] Basie Is Remarkable, But Lunceford Tops Them Both."
-- Legendary Swing Band Leader Glenn Miller

"Jimmy Lunceford Was Buried Here In Memphis. The Spot He Occupies Should Have Something Of A Special Significance. ...He Took A Group Of Relatively Unsophisticated Memphis Colored Boys And Welded Them Into An Organization Which Scaled The Heights Of Musical Eminence. ... He Presented Something New In The Way Of Musical Presentations By Negro Orchestras."
--Legendary Memphis Educator And Syndicated Columnist Nat D. Williams

Artasic & Jazzlicious Greetings To All,

This newsletter is dedicated to bringing awareness about the first annual Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival which will take place over Three Days ( Oct. 19-21, 2007 ) in Memphis, Tn, an important distribution center of culture and commerce for the nation and the world…

This is a true grassroots effort and we need all the support that we can get whether it be financial, spiritual, charitable as well as all the volunteerism possible to make this a successful event which will make an impact and immeasurable difference in a countless number of lives…If you are interested in being part of something historic and positive please continue to read this newsletter to learn of ways to support this effort…Remember there is strength in numbers and we must be the change we want to see in the world because we are the leaders that we are looking for…

I actually just created a website in honor of the event:

The Purpose Of The Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival:

To Honor And Bring Awareness To The Forgotten And Impressive Legacy And Achievements Of Jimmie Lunceford, The First High School Band Orchestra Leader/Conductor In The History Of The Memphis City Schools…Jimmie Lunceford Formed The First High School Band In Memphis At Manassas High School Where He Also Taught Football, Baseball, English And Spanish…Jimmie Lunceford Formed The Band With Money Out Of His Own Pocket And Donations From The Community…He Later Took His Band Of High School Students And Turned Them Into A Professional And Popular Local Memphis Band Known As The Chickasaw Syncopators…

In the early 1930s Lunceford took his band to the legendary Cotton Club in Harlem, NY to take over as the house band for Duke Ellington and Cab Calloway…The group eventually became known as The Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra…The Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra would regularly broadcast live from the Cotton Club gaining a huge national audience…Jimmie Lunceford would constantly beat the great swing bands of his era in numerous “battle of the bands” contests including those led by Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman and Chick Webb…The Lunceford Orchestra was considered by many including Glenn Miller and Miles Davis to be one of if not the best swing band ever!!!

Unfortunately Jimmie Lunceford (after dying under mysterious circumstances on July 12, 1947 in Seaside, Oregon) has been forgotten by many in the Memphis Community for 60 years and counting…

Jimmie Lunceford, the essence of a true teacher, never forgot about Memphis or Manassas High School and would constantly come back to talk to students at Manassas High School and hold free concerts despite being one of the most popular bandleaders in the country, Black or White…

The purpose of this event is to bring awareness about Jimmie Lunceford and to instill community pride in the achievements and accomplishments of a native Memphian who never forgot Memphis…Jimmie Lunceford’s remains are interred at the famous Elmwood Cemetery along with his wonderful legacy. Hopefully three days in October and many years to come we plan to change that.

More On Jimmie Lunceford:

1.) The Official Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival Website:

2.) The W.E. A.L.L. B.E. Internet Radio Broadcast Sunday August 26, 2007) Which Featured People Who Knew Or Know Of The Legacy Of Jimmie Lunceford:

I interviewed Mrs. Kathyrn Perry Thomas (Manassas High Class of 1932 and classical pianist who practiced with Jimmie Lunceford when he was band director at Manassas High School in the 1920s), jazz great Gerald Wilson (who went to Manassas for a couple of years back in the 1930s and who also played with Jimmie Lunceford) and Memphis journalist Preston Lauterbach who wrote the excellent story on Jimmie Lunceford in The Memphis Flyer.

3.) W.E. A.L.L. B.E. Article On Jimmie Lunceford And Other Forgotten Memphis Music Greats:

The Three Day Celebration Which Will Take Place Oct. 19-21, 2007 Includes:

1.) Date: 10/19/07 Venue: Manassas High School Time: 9am-12pm~ An opening symposium about the life and legacy of Jimmie Lunceford at his old stomping grounds…

Panelists will include people who knew Jimmie Lunceford personally, renowned music experts, and legendary musical figures who benefited from the example and music of Jimmie Lunceford…This will be broadcast live throughout the country and world via internet.

2.) Date: 10/20/07 Venue: Elmwood Cemetery Time: 9AM-10AM~ Wreath laying ceremony at Jimmie Lunceford’s gravesite in Elmwood Cemetery.

3.) Date: 10/20/07 Venue: TBA Time: TBA~ Parade And “Battle of the Bands” featuring local area high school and middle school bands in honor of Jimmie Lunceford the first high school band director in Memphis...

4.) Date: 10/21/07 Venue: TBA Time: TBA~ Tribute Concert to Jimmie Lunceford featuring local as well as national acts.

5.) Date: 10/19-10/21 Venue: TBA Time: TBA~ An art exhibit paying homage to Jimmie Lunceford and jazz music.

6.) Debut Of The Jimmie Lunceford Scholars Fund Awarded To Top Students Pursuing A Career In Music And Music Education

7.) Debut Of The Jimmie Lunceford Legacy Award Which Is A Lifetime Achievement Award Dedicated To Those Who Tirelessly Devote Themselves To The Practice And Promotion Of Jazz Music And History

NOTE: Please Visit Http:// Often For Updates On Festival Events Info...Some Times And Dates Are Subject To Change...

5 Concrete Ways To Support The First Annual Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival

1.) Buy A Jimmie Lunceford Jam Shirt Autographed And Created By R2C2H2 Tha Artivist!!!

(note: r2c2h2 copyright not part of actual shirt and design)

Please Click Here To Learn How To Order And Buy A Shirt.

2.) Become An Official Sponsor Of The Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival.

Put your money where our Paypal Account is and we will do the rest...People who donate a certain amount for sponsorship will have access to advertisement opportunities
with us…To Learn More About This Opportunity Click Here.

3.) Donate Your Spare Change To Our Paypal Account.

There is no such thing as small change in this effort for change...If you have a penny or more please feel free to donate to this cause…Please Send Your "Change For Change" To Our Paypal Account By Clicking Here.

4.) Volunteer Your Time And Talents To Make This Event 60 Years In The Making A Truly Extraordinary One.

If you have a talent(s) or a service that would benefit the festival please feel free to contact us through e-mail jimmie.lunceford.jam or call us anytime @ 901-299-4355…All good vibrations are welcomed!!!

5.) Spread The Word To Your Networks And Beyond…

We need to get the word out about this event…Word of mouth, all types of media attention is welcomed…The more people know the more people can support…Remember the official website is

If you are reading this I would like to thank you for taking the time to do so and for your consideration...If you are reading this and want to be a part of something historic, fun and that will make an impact for years and generations to come I would like to welcome you to the family!!!

All That Jazz With Some Love,

Bro. Ron Herd II a.k.a. R2C2H2 Tha Artivist
Founder of The Jimmie Lunceford Jamboree Festival

*Important~Please Vote For The Following 2 R2C2H2 Websites To Win The 2008 Black Web Awards...Just Follow The Links And Vote As Many Times As You Want!!!

The Official R2C2H2 Tha Artivist Website (

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Voting Ends Oct. 19, 2007 So Please Help A Brother Out And Spread The Word...