Saturday, December 29, 2012 at 2 PM
Enjoy the jazzy musical sounds of talented composer and drummer Reggie Quinerly as he presents a special mini-concert. This special concert presentation will take place on Saturday, December 29, 2012 at 2 PM at The African American Library at the Gregory School, 1300 Victor Street, 77019, 832-393-1440. This event is free and open to the public.
Quinerly recently released his debut CD “Music Inspired by Freedmantown” which taps a rich vein of cultural history and was produced by his record label Redefinition Music. Quinerly is looking forward to bringing his music to the Library. “I feel extremely privileged,” he says, “for the opportunity to present this music at The African American Library at the Gregory School, a special venue that celebrates the collective achievements of all people, past, present, and future.”
Although Quinerly attended grammar school in the heart of the historic African-American district once known as Freedman’s Town (now the Fourth Ward), he knew little of the significance of the area. A melody he composed while in his second year at the Juilliard School opened the door to memories of his hometown and soon he had an obsession with learning everything he could about the neighborhood and its past. “Over time I began to discover how this area became home to Houston’s largest population of African-American homeowners immediately following the Emancipation Proclamation,” says Quinerly. “I learned how its history has played a significant role in the advancement of racial and economic equality, impacting the lives of all Texans from then on.” The streets of Freedmantown, he says, “were becoming the backdrop for this project. I wanted to capture the very soulful essence of Freedmantown’s voice.”
About Reggie Quinerly
Quinerly is originally from Houston and he started playing drums at an early age after hearing Lester Grant playing at the church that he attended with his family. “Many people, including myself, come to jazz through church, with the latter helping to shape the way we hear and play the former. In my mind, he was a jazz drummer first,” Quinerly says of Grant, with whom he studied for a year. “Much later I discovered he had been a top session drummer in the ’50s for many traveling blues and jazz acts, which explained why the way he played wasn’t necessarily from the gospel tradition. It wasn’t shoutin’ music. Sitting at his side, I developed my sensibility for hearing the drums a little bit differently. It was definitely more low-key.”
Quinerly’s dedication and curious nature led his parents to search out another private instructor, Samuel Dinkins III who would challenge and hone his musical skills. After graduating from the renowned High School for the Visual and Performing Arts (HSPVA) he made his transition into the New York jazz scene, continuing his studies at the New School University. Since relocating in 1999 he has performed with the likes of saxophonist Joe Lovano, NEA Jazz Master Von Freeman, Branford Marsalis, Seamus Blake, James Spaulding, Greg Osby, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and pianist John Hicks.
Quinerly has also had the good fortune of learning from master drummers Jimmy Cobb, Joe Chambers, Michael Carvin, Lewis Nash and Kenny Washington. Another recent achievement includes the completion of his Master’s degree from The Juilliard School’s Jazz Division.
As an educator and clinician he has toured the United States, Italy, Austria, France and Spain. Quinerly was also among the performers of bassist Christian McBride’s New York premiere of the “The Movement Revisited” suite.
About The African American Library at the Gregory School
The African American Library at the Gregory School opened its doors in 2009. Located in the historic Freedman’s Town at 1300 Victor St., Houston, TX 77019, the library is housed in the Edgar M. Gregory School building which served as the first public school for African Americans in Houston. The first library of its kind in Houston and one of the few African American libraries in the country, The African American Library at the Gregory School serves as a resource to preserve, promote, and celebrate the rich history and culture of African Americans in Houston, the surrounding region, and the African Diaspora. The library provides incomparable collections of multi-type resources including reference books, rare books, archival materials, exhibits, artifacts, oral histories, and innovative programs.
About the Houston Public Library
The Houston Public Library operates 35 neighborhood libraries, three HPL Express Libraries, a Central Library, the Houston Metropolitan Research Center, the Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research, The African American Library at the Gregory School, and the Parent Resource Library located in the Children’s Museum of Houston. Serving more than 4 million customers per year, HPL is committed to excellent customer service and equitable access to information and programs by providing library customers with free use of a diverse collection of printed materials and electronic resources, Internet, laptop and computer use, and a variety of database and reference resources with live assistance online 24/7.
For further information, visit the Houston Public Library at www.houstonlibrary.org or call 832-393-1313.
Manager of Public Relations
Houston Public Library
832.393.1381; cell 713.435.9448