Jon Jang Quintet (USA)

Can't Stop Cryin' for America:
Black Lives Matter!

Saturday May 21, 7:00pm
Duration: 50 minutes, no intermission

Gallery 308
Tickets: General Admission
$20 Advance, $25 Door
Reserved Table Seating
$25 Advance, $30 Door
Front Row Reserved Seating
$30 Advance, $35 Door

Jon Jang Quintet

Can’t Stop Cryin’ for America: Black Lives Matter!, is a music work in progress by Jon Jang in collaboration with poet performer Amanda Kemp. The work will be organized into seven vignettes named after each black victim group killed by the police and/or white supremacists this past year: Eric Garner (New York), John Crawford III (Ohio), Michael Brown (Ferguson, Missouri), Tamir Rice (Ohio), Freddie Gray (Maryland), six black mothers & three black men (Charleston, South Carolina) and Sandra Bland (Texas), The final vignette, Five Young Black Men, will memorialize Emmett Till, Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin, John Powell and Mario Woods.

Program May 21 2016
More Motherless Children (Jon Jang)
Vignette from Can’t Stop Cryin’ for America

Prayer for Melvin Truss (Francis Wong)

An Offering to Sandra Bland (Hitomi Oba)

Meditations on Integration (Charles Mingus)

Butterfly Lovers Song (Chen Gang/He Zhan Hao/Jon Jang)


Dr. Amanda Kemp (playwright, poet performer), Visiting Scholar in Africana Studies at Franklin & Marshall College, is "on a mission to heal the planet." A playwright and Pennsylvania Commonwealth Lecturer on poet Phillis Wheatley, Dr. Kemp’s unique blend of performance and lecture have been sought by schools and colleges throughout the U.S. She earned a B.A. from Stanford University and a Ph.D. from Northwestern University. She is currently touring a performance project Inspira: The Power of the Spiritual, her film To Cross an Ocean Four Centuries Long, and Say Her Name: A Tribute to Black Women.

Jon Jang (composer, pianist) became the first Chinese American to compose a symphonic work, The Chinese American Symphony, commissioned and performed by the Sacramento Philharmonic Orchestra and the Oakland East Bay Symphony that honors the Chinese immigrant laborers who built the first transcontinental railroad in the US. Jang and James Newton composed When Sorrow Turns to Joy – Songlines: The Spiritual Tributary of Paul Robeson and Mei Lanfang commissioned by Cal Performances and has recorded with Newton, as well as with David Murray and Max Roach. Jang toured with Max Roach in United States and Europe including the Royal Festival Hall in London. Jang has taught at Stanford University and was awarded the Martin Luther King Jr.-Cesar Chavez-Rosa Parks Visiting Professor recognition at the University of Michigan. Recently, Jang has been touring with his presentation, The Sounds of Struggle: Music from the Black Liberation Movement of the 1960s to the Asian American Movement of the 1980s, at Columbia University, as well as other universities on the East Coast.

Akira Tana (multiple percussion).Born and raised in California, Tana earned degrees from Harvard University and the New England Conservatory of Music. Tana has performed with Sonny Rollins, Sonny Stitt, Zoot Sims, Hubert Laws, Milt Jackson, Jim Hall, Art Farmer Paul Winter Consort, Paquito D'Rivera, James Moody, J.J. Johnson, Lena Horne,Manhattan Transfer, Ruth Brown, Charles Aznavour, Maurice Hines and Van Dyke parks. He has appeared on over 200 recordings including recordings as a leader and co-leader with Rufus Reid.Tana co-led a quintet with the bassist, Rufus Reid called TanaReid. Tana is currently on the music faculty at San Francisco State University and the California Jazz Conservatory in Berkeley.

Gary Brown (double bass) has recorded and performed with such notable artist as Flora Purim & Airto Moreira, Steve Winwood, George Duke, Santana, Lyle Mays, Azar Lawrence , Narada Michael Walden, Gregg Rolie, Dianne Reeves, Roy Ayres, Ernie Watts, Jeff Beck ,Torninho Horta, Larry Coryell, Phararoh Sanders, Eddie Henderson Andy Narrell, Pete and Sheila (Sheila E.) Escovedo, Bernie Worell, and Patrice Rushen. Brown is currently in ensembles with Gregg Rolie , Akira Tana, Babtunde Lea, Narada Michael Walden and the Rebeca Mauleon Group.

Hitomi Oba (tenor saxophone) was raised in Berkeley, California. Hitomi completed her M.A. at the University of California Los Angeles in Music Composition after receiving her B.A. in Ethnomusicology/Jazz Studies. Recent projects include her small ensembles, sixteen‐piece jazz orchestra, Jazz Nexus, electro‐acoustic pop duo, Nova, and the jazz opera, Strange Fellowe. Her second jazz album, Negai, released under Japanese label M&I received a prestigious “Swing Journal 42nd Annual Jazz Disc Award.” Hitomi is one of the co-founders of the new music collective, LA Signal Lab. Hitomi teaches music theory at UCLA, integrating classical, jazz, popular music and world musical genres.

Nick DePinna (trombone) was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. Nick completed his M.A. at UCLA in Music Composition. He has performed with Dee Dee Bridgewater, Gerald Wilson, Herbie Hancock, Hubert Laws and Wayne Shorter. Recent projects include his small ensembles in collaboration with Hitomi Oba, as well as their sixteen‐piece jazz orchestra, Jazz Nexus, electro‐acoustic pop duo, Nova, and the jazz opera, Strange Fellowe. Nick is one of the co-founders of the new music collective, LA Signal Lab, comprised of fellow composer-performers with backgrounds in both jazz and classical music traditions. As a composer, Nick has been a part of The Kennedy Center Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Young Composers Program, as well as the SFJAZZ Young Composers Collective
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