The Arts Council’s Michelle Lanier, director of the African American Heritage Commission, shares a few moments with Maceo Parker on Friday during the Art of Cool Festival. Here’s a recap of the festival in her own words:
“What a phenomenal weekend for music in Durham! Maceo Parker was extraordinarily funky. What a showman! I love that there were so many members of the Parker family representing the deep legacy of North Carolina’s musical riches. I’m so proud to have met one of the architects of funk. Maceo and his brother Melvin Parker are prominently featured in our African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina guidebook.
Artists Lois Deloatch, Nnenna Freelon, the Beast, Al Strong, Shirlette Ammons, and the NCCU Jazz Band all proclaimed through their artistry that North Carolina has more than enough soul, jazz, and funk to share. Audience members came from all over (I chatted with folks from New York and Washington D.C.)
Carolina Soul was a beautiful tribute to Nina Simome, Roberta Flack, John Coltrane, and Thelonious Monk.
Cody Chesnutt felt the love from his audience at the American Tobacco Campus. Bilal performed at the Hayti Heritage Center (the perfect setting for his ethereal vocals) and joined in at least two other performances, including a duet with Nnenna Freelon during Carolina Soul.”