Charleston Music Hall becoming jazz shrine

Wednesday, July 13, 2011
by Jack McCray

Charleston is slowly, but surely, taking its rightful place as one of America’s great jazz towns. All the markers are emerging.There is a steadily growing number of fine, young musicians. There is some form of instruction at area schools — middle, high and university. There are more and more opportunities to consume jazz, of all the myriad styles. There’s an expanding constituency of savvy listeners who are buying tickets and going to venues in droves. There’s a buzz about the Charleston jazz scene in musician communities in other jazz strongholds such as Atlanta, New Orleans, Savannah, Columbia, Chicago, Charlotte and New York. Then there’s support infrastructure that doesn’t exist, as far as I know, in many other places in the country. There’s an eight-year-old research project, the Charleston Jazz Initiative, based at the College of Charleston that explores the history and legacy of the art form in South Carolina. Jazz Artists of Charleston, a three-year-old presenting group, puts on shows of all kinds year-round…

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