World-renowned musician honored with community concert

JACKSON, Tenn.– A world-famous musician was celebrated in Jackson this weekend.

Gil Scott-Heron was celebrated Friday morning with a mural reveal, followed by a special Saturday night concert in Jackson.

James E. Cherry, President of the Griot Collective of West TN, shares the importance of having the community concert. “It’s a community gig because Gil Scott-Heron was raised here. His formative years were spent here, and it’s a way to celebrate all of his contributions, such as his poetry, his music, his activism. It’s also a great way to bring the community together.

Wendy Trice-Martin, President of African American Cultural Awareness, also known as SAACA, shares her passion with the celebrations.

“Gil Scott-Heron’s music is music for everyone, you know, and he started his activism here and he ends with music, with activism and entertainment.”

Mehr Mansuri, the artistic director of The Children’s Theater Company tells of the hope of having the children at the concert. “It’s really about children seeing that they can be a voice for positive change. That they can be the agents of change. That they feel empowered, in their own community and therefore in the world in which they live.

One of The Children’s Theater Company performers, Jadin Springfield shares a lyric. “If you wholeheartedly desire friendship, with every race on earth, your thought, both spiritual and positive, will spread. It will become the desire of others stronger and stronger, until it reaches the minds of all men. Baha writers.”

Gil Scott Heron’s son, Rumal Rackley, expresses his joy with the celebrations. “I was happy to see how the mural turned out, and just the celebration that Wendy, James and Jackson in general turned out. So we were just happy to be separated from it. ”

Gil Scott-Heron Day should be an annual celebration.

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