Englewood turns its hopes to jazz

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Ernest Dawkins

Chicago composer Ernest Dawkins during "UnTill Emmett Till," an incendiary jazz opera about the murder of Emmett Till, penned by Dawkins and performed by singer Dee Alexander, poet Khari B. and a roaring orchestra. (Scott Strazzante/Chicago Tribune / September 11, 2012)

"Our labor has borne fruit."

And it continues to do so.

The 13th annual Englewood Jazz Festival will feature Bill McFarland and the Chicago Horns at noon; singer June Yvon, 1:30 p.m.; the Ernest Dawkins Afro/Straight Quartet with guest Maurice Brown, 3 p.m.; presentation of the Spirit of Jazz Award to Geraldine de Haas and Timuel Black, 4:30 p.m.; and Live the Spirit Big Band at 4:45 p.m.; rain or shine at Hamilton Park, 513 W. 72nd St.; free. Shuttle buses will run between Hamilton Park and the South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Drive. For information: 312-747-6174 or englewoodjazzfest.org.

Celebrating 'Vonski'

Tributes to the great Chicago tenor saxophonist Von Freeman, who died last month at age 88, probably will unfold for months to come, but one of the most promising has been scheduled for next week.

Drummer Michael Raynor, guitarist Mike Allemana and bassist Matt Ferguson — longtime Freeman collaborators — will be joined by pianist Willie Pickens and others for a "Jazz Showcase Tribute" to the legendary tenor man.

All proceeds go to the Freeman family, Raynor says, thanks to a donation supporting the event from the New Apartment Lounge, where Freeman and the band long performed.

Notes Raynor on Facebook: "Come on out, hear some music and give something back to one of the most generous musicians you've ever met!"

The music-making begins at 8 p.m. Monday at the Jazz Showcase, 806 S. Plymouth Court; $20 or larger donations accepted; 312-360-0234 or jazzshowcase.com.

To read more from Howard Reich on jazz, go to chicagotribune.com/reich.


Twitter @howardreich

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