Events celebrate Portland’s Black music history
Musicians Charlie Brown III (left) and Domo Branch, both of the group Brown Branch, will play Sunday, July 17 at 7 p.m. as part of the Albina Music Trust’s Summer of Sound.
The legacy of music emitting from Portland’s historic Black community is celebrated this summer with a series of live concerts, an art opening and storytelling.
The Albina Music Trust presents Summer of Sound, connecting attendees with the arts and the cultural legacy of Albina, the historic epicenter for Black Portlanders, and establishing new multigenerational connections through music.
Kicking off the first of four free events will be Soul Conversation, an oral history panel with musicians from Albina’s past, on Thursday, July 14 at 7 p.m. at Alberta House, 5131 N.E. 23rd Ave.
Facilitated by Calvin Walker, the conversation will feature Paul Knauls Sr., J.W. Friday, Norman Sylvester, Kenneth W. Berry, and Jeddy Beasley. Archival photography showcasing Albina’s historic music culture will be presented and the conversation will conclude with a performance by Charlie Brown III & Friends.
Later this month, Albina Music Trust and Brown Branch present Time Sound: Albina’s Jazz Reimaged by Greaterkind, coming Sunday, July 17 at 7 p.m. at the conclusion to the annual Cathedral Park Jazz Festival in north Portland’s St. Johns neighborhood.
Time Sound was originally conceived in 1981 by Portland’s Thara Memory and the World Arts Foundation. The rebirth concert will see Memory’s longtime students Charlie Brown III and Domo Branch leading their Greaterkind collective through a suite of local jazz, soul, funk and fusion compositions.
On Aug. 4 at 7 p.m., Albina Music Trust and Clyde’s Prime Rib, will present Wall to Wall Soul, a special art opening and album release party featuring Charlie Brown III & Friends with two previous unreleased 1970s LPS, Lights Out and Transport. Organizers said Clyde’s, located at 5474 N.E. Sandy Blvd. has long served Albina’s elder musician community, presenting live music featuring these musicians.
The summer series will conclude with another Time Sound: Albina’s Jazz Reimaged by Greaterkind performance on Saturday, Aug. 6 at 7 pm. at the Washington Park Rose Garden, once again amplifying Portland’s Black cultural heritage through the lens of a new generation, showcasing sounds of the past and their influence today.