Marlboro College

News William Parker performs 'The Inside Songs of Curtis Mayfield', Feb. 18

MARLBORO, VT - (February 10, 2011) - As part of its Black History Month programming, Marlboro College will present a jazz concert by the William Parker Octet on Friday, February 18, at 8:00p.m., in Whittemore Theater.

Parker's 2010 release, I Plan to Stay a Believer: The Inside Songs of Curtis Mayfield, is the culmination of a project the bassist began more than 10 years ago with the goal of interpreting Mayfield's socially conscious-infused pop songs in the same way one would approach Duke Ellington or Thelonius Monk. He will be joined by Michael Wimberly (drums), David Burrell (piano), Lewis Barnes (trumpet), Sabir Mateen (saxophone), Darryl Foster (saxophone), Leena Conquest (vocals) and Amiri Baraka (poetry).

"Parker isn't simply interpreting or covering Mayfield's songs," explains Pitchfork magazine's Joe Tangari. "He's extending them, treating them as living documents, and adding new content that dovetails with Mayfield's political thoughts. The band is amazing. To pull and stretch these songs so much and still preserve their essential identity is a true feat of art."

General admission tickets ($25) can be purchased in advance by visiting The concert is free for Marlboro students, faculty and staff.

William Parker has been a celebrated jazz musician, improvisor, and composer in New York City for nearly thirty years. In ‘95 the Village Voice characterized William Parker as "the most consistently brilliant free jazz bassist of all time". He began recording in 1994 and leading his own bands on a regular basis founding two ensembles, In Order To Survive, and The Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra. Most notable among many recent projects is the Inside Songs of Curtis Mayfield. He has taught at Bennington College, NYU, The New England Conservatory of Music, Cal Arts, New School University and Rotterdam Conservatory of Music. Parker is also a theorist and author of several books including the Sound Journal, Document Humanum, Music and the Shadow People and The Mayor of Punkville.

Images available upon request. For more information, contact the Marlboro College Public Relations department at 802-251-7644 or In case of inclement weather, call the Marlboro College Events line at 802-451-7151.

For over 60 years, Marlboro College has offered undergraduate education in the liberal arts and, since 1997, master's degree programs for working adults in the areas of educational technology, internet technologies, health care administration and an MBA in Managing for Sustainability. Its 330 undergraduate students enjoy an 8:1 student-faculty ratio, a voice in governing the community and individualized courses of study on a 300-acre campus in the hills of southern Vermont.



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