African American Heritage Music Trail travels to the AME Zion Church in Newburgh on June 16

Remembering and celebrating African Americans and their contributions to music and community


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  • Tyrone Birkett of the ensemble group, the Tyrone Birkett Emancipation




  • The Convent Avenue Baptist Church Male Choir of Harlem




  • African American Heritage Music Trail travels to the AME Zion Church in Newburgh on Saturday, June 16.




— The "African American Heritage Music Trail" stops at AME Zion Church, the oldest African American church in the Hudson Valley, on Saturday, June 16, at 4 p.m., offering an afternoon of gospel and jazz.

AME Zion Church is located at 109 Washington St. in the City of Newburgh.

The event is presented by Ferry Godmother Productions and it's premiere sponsor is Empire Blue Cross and Blue Shield.

This fund raiser for the Ferry Godmother Music Circuit will explore musical styles from early African American music known as Negro spirituals into gospel, then reinterpreting the spirituals into jazz.

Giving an overview of the early African American footprint will be City of Newburgh Historian Mary McTamaney.

Tickets are limited, general admission tickets are $25 online, $35 day of or at door. To purchase tickets or more info, www.ferrygodmother.com.

PerformersConvent Avenue Baptist Church is a prestigious church in Harlem. Among many things it is known for its pastor being the first African-American Protestant to preach in St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the first black pastor to preach in the White House.

It is also known for having a large number of brilliant choirs. The popular Male Choir offers remarkable gospel music featuring stellar vocals and deep devotion.

They have received an award from the Gospel Music Preservation Society for best Male Choir. The choir is lead by Dr. Gregory Hopkins, a PhD from Temple University,

Tyrone Birkett is a saxophonist, composer, producer, music director, conceptualist and speaker with extensive experience partnering art and social action as an "artist for humanity."

His concept is to focus on creating music that affirms the good and the beautiful. His projects center around the synthesized jazz language, black church music, soul music and Negro spirituals.

Fronted by his saxophone and the declarative vocals of his wife, Paula Ralph Birkett, the lyrics and melodies are enveloped in harmonies of funk, jazz rhythms and soulful improvisation.

Negro spirituals, gospel and jazzNegro spirituals are the foundation of all music including jazz. It was used from the time of the Underground Railroad to the Civil Rights Movement, helping to invigorate the spirit of a people striving for freedom. Slavery Negro spirituals were inspirational, and coded communication, based on the belief that there must be justice somewhere, somehow. Negro spirituals gave a voice to the condition of an enslaved, oppressed people in the hopes that a change would come.

About Ferry Godmother Music CircuitFerry Godmother Music Circuit is a variety of music concerts held on the Newburgh waterfront. Each genre of concerts is bundled into a series. The 2018 concerts will include jazz, oldies, doowop and introducing "Jewish music."

Each show offers listeners a rare opportunity to enjoy one of the richest and most varied forms of music genres and styles, all at no cost. Each concert is designed intimate setting makes possible a connection foster a rare bond among between performers and audiences. The feeling closeness and positive engagement is a draw to the Ferry Godmother for performers, audience and sponsors alike.

For more event information, visit our www.FerryGodmother.com.





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