Suppliers Set For Black Music Month5 May, 2004 By: Jessica Wolf
June is Black Music Month, as decreed last year by President Bush in a proclamation urging “Americans of all backgrounds to learn more about the heritage of black musicians and to celebrate the remarkable role they have played in our history and culture.”
Music suppliers are rising to the call this year with plenty of titles featuring the best of African-American musicians from a broad swath of musical styles and generations.
Monterey Video highlights gospel music with its June 15 release of O Happy Day on DVD ($19.95). The program includes a June 1981 performance from legendary gospel musicians The Reverend James Cleveland, Shirley Caesar, Walter Hawkins and The Hawkins Family, The Mighty Clouds of Joy and the Clark Sisters. A special DVD extra is a feature on the history of Gospel music.
Music Video Distributors has a slew of titles to celebrate Black Music Month, including new releases like Geno Washington & the Blues Question: What's in the Pot?, which streets May 11, as well as titles like Art Blakey & Jazz Messengers: Live at Village Vanguard, Nat King Cole: Soundies and Telescriptions, Sarah Vaughan & Friends: Swing Era, Louis Jordan: Films and Soundies, Hip Hop Time Capsule 1992, Cab Calloway: Hi-De-Ho and Other Movies, Duke Ellington: Swing Era and more.
Image is releasing four new titles in time for Black Music Month. Streeting June 1 are Visions of Diana Ross and The Pointer Sisters: So Excited, both at $7.99 on DVD and Lyricist Lounge: Dirty States of America at $19.99. Arriving June 15 is Macy Gray: A Day in the Life ($19.99). The supplier is also repromoting a slate of catalog titles, including Tupac Shakur: Thug Angel — The Life of an Outlaw, Diane Schuur & the Count Basie Orchestra, The Best of Tina Turner: Celebrate, Marvin Gaye: Greatest Hits Live in '76, Ray Charles in Concert, Ziggy Marley & the Melody Makers Live and its “BET on Jazz” series featuring legendary African-American musicians like B.B. King, Herbie Hancock, Lou Rawls and Roberta Flack.