Category Archives: The Mississippi Scene

Newsmakers (artists, entrepreneurs, musicians, etc…) and events in Mississippi.

Watch: Kamikaze on Mic Magazine TV

Brad “Kamikaze” Franklin is forever grinding. Husband, father, hip hop artist, socially conscious journalist and CEO of OurGlass Media Group, whenever I spot him in public he’s either working or running errands (i.e. still working). Despite the menacing conotation of his moniker, he oozes positivity and intelligence. Watch as he breaks down the meaning of his name,  the reason he is Mississippi’s greatest MC, the importance of supporting local artists, and his OG-ness.

Follow Kamikaze on social media: twitter facebook instagram

#shoutout to #micmagazine

Say ‘Yes, MAAM’ to Classical Music

You may not be a die-hard classical music purist, but the Mississippi Academy of Ancient Music (MAAM) can make you feel like one. The organization’s 2014-2015 concert series consists of seven performances and marks its 30th season of presenting early classical music the way the composers intended it to sound.

People like Bach and Handel sound very different when played on the kind of instruments they intended to be used. (Pictured left to right) John Holloway, Lars-Ulrik Mortensen, Jane Gower.)
“People like Bach and Handel sound very different when played on the kind of instruments they intended to be used.”

When it comes to music from the 18th century or earlier, Dr. Richard McGinnis, a MAAM founding organizer, says  the problem is “we play it the same way we would play [songs that were written] today.  It turns out that’s not remotely what was expected. So people like Bach and Handel sound very different when played on the kind of instruments they intended to be used as opposed to what we do today.” McGinnis says even when we have similar instruments we play them differently.  Luckily there are an elite few dedicated to replicating sounds that are truer to early music.  Beyond authentic instruments, they’ve studied old instruction books on how to properly play those instruments.

Some would-be concert goers may be put off by the term “ancient” but they shouldn’t be.  McGinnis says that by “ancient” they are not referring to music from biblical times. He explains that in the 18th century there was a group called Academy of Ancient Music and “apparently at that time “ancient” meant 20 or 30 years old.” Based on this, Mississippi Academy of Ancient Music was methodically named because its acronym, MAAM, happened to play on the southern term ma’am, used to show a woman respect.  In comparison, the often times difficult classical pieces showcased by the organization merit such respect as do the skilled musicians who interpret them.

Delving further into the origins of MAAM, McGinnis credits former Tougaloo College colleague Dr. Ernst Borinksi for bringing everyone together. Borinski who passed away in 1983, was a Jewish sociologist who fled Germany as a result of the Holocaust. Upon moving to the South he strongly opposed prevalent Jim Crow laws. “Borinksi was very well known in the civil rights period back in the days of freedom summer,” McGinnis says. It was at one of Borinski’s annual birthday bashes that co-founders McGinnis, John Paul and Max Garriott first performed together.

Dr. Ernst Borinski
Dr. Ernst Borinski

After 30 years, MAAM, Jackson’s undisputed official curator of ancient music, continues to show strong support for outstanding local talent while drawing internationally acclaimed artists to the city.  This season’s opening performance on November 20th 2014 featured an über-talented trio made up of John Holloway, violin; Jane Gower, dulcian (baroque bassoon); and Lars-Ulrik Mortensen, harpsichord. Holloway and Mortensen have produced works together for nearly thirty years. One of their most significant recordings is “Corelli’s Op. 5 Sonatas,” the only recording to use the instrumentations specified by Corelli. According to the group’s bio Holloway and Mortensen had the trio sonatas for violino and fagotto by Castello and Fontana on their repertoire wishlist. That wish came true when Jane Gower appeared. Gower is one of the very few bassoonists in the world capable of playing this spectacular music.

(front to back) John Holloway, Jane Gower, Lars-Ulrik Mortense
(front to back) John Holloway, Jane Gower, Lars-Ulrik Mortensen

The next performance will showcase Taylis Fernandez- cello and John Paul – piano on Thursday, February 5, 2015. The duo will perform Beethoven sonatas for ‘cello and piano. Get all show dates, time and locations at ancientmusic.org. You’ll also find a full list of performers and prices.

Taylis Fernandez and John Paul perform together February 5, 2015.
Taylis Fernandez and John Paul perform together February 5, 2015.

A version of this article first appeared in Jackson Free Press November 19-26, 2014 issue.

November is Native American Heritage Month

Thanksgiving and Veteran’s Day garner all of the attention during the month of November when the entire month is actually Native American Heritage Month.

Okay, sure Thanksgiving plays in schools across the nation give a small nod to Indians regarding the “feast”; and Natives serve in the military and are thus honored as Veterans, but can you name one without a quick internet search? Besides the foods feasted on by the Pilgrims and Indians, what other contributions have Natives made that you can name off the top of your head?

My point is that Native Americans don’t receive the recognition they deserve.

Continue reading November is Native American Heritage Month

Video – Mississippi Roads: Fondren, Food Trucks, Peaches Restaurant

If you didn’t know by now, the Fondren district in Jackson Mississippi is experiencing a renaissance of sorts. From the nostalgic face of the buildings to the allure of walking-distance hot spots, and an even hotter music scene, the area is garnering lots of attention. Mississippi Roads (MPB/PBS) featured Fondren in an episode which originally aired on October 9, 2014. Continue reading Video – Mississippi Roads: Fondren, Food Trucks, Peaches Restaurant

Quick Look: Mississippi State Fair 155th Anniversary 2014

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What: 115th Annual Mississippi State Fair

When: October 1-12, 2014. Gates open at 5:00 pm Wednesday October 1, 2014

Where: Mississippi State Fairgrounds (1207 Mississippi St., Jackson, MS 39202)

Crowd pullers:

Ticket info, parking & ride specials:

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Hashtags: No official hashtags as of opening day. Share your own fair hastag(s) on the Mississippi State Fair’s facebook page (link below).

Goodies:

  • traditional fair food and drink
  • Free App

App Benefits:

  • Fun Guide
  • Car Finder
  • Full calendar/schedule of events
  • Fair Map
  • Alerts
  • Social Media
  • Photo Gallery and link to submit your own
  • Weather
  • Nearby Attractions
  • and more

Other Relevant links:

Are you going? Show us your good time. Just tag @etudelife on instagram or twitter. Don’t forget to like Étude Life on facebook.

Poll: Should rapper T.I. have been given the Key to the City of Jackson Mississippi?

T.I. receives Key to the City of Jackson on September 24, 2014. Photo by Trip Burns
T.I. receives Key to the City of Jackson on September 24, 2014. Photo by Trip Burns

JACKSON- On Wednesday, September 24, 2014, rapper T.I. (Clifford Harris) was in town to deliver an inspiring message to the youth of the capital city. Making stops at Northwest Middle School and Forest Hill High School, T.I. urged students to “become positive influences within the community.” In a ceremony at city hall Mayor Tony Yarber presented the rapper with the key to the city for his efforts to end violence among the youth and for his positive influence despite his own run-ins with the law. Get more coverage of the event through the links below. What do you think? Should T.I. have received the key to the city?

Video-T.I. receives key to the city of Jackson

T.I. given Key to the city of Jackson choice receives criticism

T.I. Gets Key to Jackson

T.I. in the Sip

Quick Look: Jackson R&B Fest

Screenshot from festival's official website.
Screenshot from festival’s official website.

What:  Second Annual Jackson Rhythm & Blues Festival

Hashtag: #jxnrandbfest

Crowd pullers:

  • Ziggy Marley
  • Boney James
  • Fantasia
  • Chrisette Michele
  • Bell Biv Devoe
  • Bobby Rush
  • Marc Broussard
  • Estelle
  • Dorothy Moore

When: Friday August 15, 2014 and Saturday August 16, 2014

Where: Mississippi Ag and Forestry Museum (1150 Lakeland Drive, Jackson, MS 39211)

Cost: $31.45 for one day or $57.05 for a 2-day pass

Goodies: food, drinks, VIP packages, souvenirs etc…

Relevant links:  Tickets         Complete line-up, schedule, and venue map

Are you going?