Jazz Journalists Association Jazz Heroes 2020
Twenty-seven “activists, advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors of jazz” in 23 U.S. cities were announced by the Jazz Journalists Association today as the organization’s 2020 slate of Jazz Heroes.
This year’s Heroes, from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Los Angeles, California, Seattle to South Florida, Birmingham to Minneapolis are all presenters, educators, non-profit administrators, public faces of grassroots organizations, writers, broadcasters and in several cases – as with Ran Blake, Ocie Davis, Matthew Garrison, Billy Mitchell, Patty Peterson, Gwen “Rivablue” Redding, Ron Steen, Jay Thomas and Anthony Tidd — active musicians developing and sustaining America’s native art in their local communities and beyond.
The complete list of honorees, with photo portraits and biographies, is posted HERE.
- Ann Arbor, MI: Deanna Relyea
- Atlanta, GA: Gwen Redding
- Baltimore, MD: Sean Jones
- Bay Area, CA: Richard Hadlock
- Birmingham, AL: Leah Tucker
- Boston, MA: Ran Blake
- Brooklyn, NY: Matthew Garrison & Fortuna Sung
- Capital Region, NY: Susan Cohen Brink
- Charlotte, NC: Lonnie & Ocie Davis
- Chicago, IL: Harriet Choice
- Cleveland, OH: Terri Pontremoli
- Denver, CO: Norman Provizer
- Fort Lauderdale, FL: Dr. Ronald B. Weber
- Hartford, CT: Ed Krech
- Indianapolis, IN: Albert Coleman
- Los Angeles, CA: Billy Mitchell
- Minneapolis, MN: Patty Peterson
- New York, NY: Roberta Alloway
- Philadelphia, PA: Anthony Tidd
- Portland, OR: Ron Steen
- Seattle, WA: Jay Thomas
- St. Louis, MO: Gene Dobbs Bradford
- Tallahassee, FL: Jan & Mark Pudlow
- Washington, DC: Sunny Sumter
“In this troubling time, as the world fights a pandemic, the JJA is proud to celebrate the hearts, souls and efforts of these Heroes who all are of the opinion that creative, improvised music offers substantial person and societal benefits, ” says Howard Mandel, president of the JJA. “And they do everything they can to spread that message.”
The Jazz Journalists Association, a 501 (c) (3) professional organization of writers, photographers, videographers, broadcasters and new media activists covering jazz, established its Jazz Heroes campaign in 2010, having since 2001 called the honorees members of the JJA “A Team.” Public presentations of Jazz Heroes statuettes by their local friends and fans will be done locally when such events can safely resume. Dates will be announced at JJAJazzAwards.org.
The Jazz Heroes are named in conjunction with the JJA’s annual, voted-for Jazz Awards for excellence in music and music journalism. Nominees for 2020 Jazz Awards will be announced mid-April, with winners revealed on or about May 1 at www.JJAJazzAwards.org.