Jazz

Blue Bird Inn Collection

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The Blue Bird Inn was an institute for Detroit musicians and a hearth for the Black community. Detroit Sound Conservancy is telling the bar’s story. THE INSTITUTE OF THE DETROIT SOUND Updated 30 April 2020 In 1937, African American Alabama migrant, laborer, grocer, machine operator, and entrepreneur William Dubois (c. 1878-1937) and his wife Pinkie […]

Graystone Jazz Museum: Collection

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The Graystone International Jazz Museum & Hall of Fame was a community-based Black music archive that closed earlier this century that we salvaged in 2015.

McKinney’s Cotton Pickers

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McKinney’s Cotton Pickers, a black dance orchestra active from 1927 to 1934, served as the house band at Detroit’s Graystone Ballroom under Jean Goldkette management in the late 1920s. Under the direction of William McKinney (1895–1969) and saxophonist-arranger Don Redman (1900–1964), McKinney’s band rivaled the famous Duke Ellington and Fletcher Henderson orchestras during its existence. […]

James Jenkins: Graystone Museum Founder

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This manuscript is the product of a tape recorded interview with James T. Jenkins conducted by Deborah Evans for the Burton Historical Collection of the Detroit Public Library on June 7, 1988. Deborah Evans transferred the tape and James T. Jenkins [1916-1994] edited the transcript. James T. Jenkins is the Founder and Director of the […]