Bessie Jones and the Sea Island Singers

Friends of Negro Spirituals’ Community Meeting and Presentation

By Angela Thomas, FNS Education Co-Chair

BessieJones01.01.654

Date: Saturday, February 20, 2016
Time: 12:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Location: West Oakland Library, 1801 Adeline St. at 18th St., across from DeFremery Park
Admission: Free

12:30 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.: Community Meeting
1:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.: Presentation and Discussion
2:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.: Light Refreshments and Networking

Bessie Jones was an amazing African American gospel and folk singer; she grew up under a grandfather who was a former slave born in Africa and who taught her many songs (and African traditions).

One of the most gifted of the singing voices and of the oral historians of the Sea Islands of Georgia/South Carolina, she was credited with helping to bring folk songs, games, and stories to a wider audience in the 20th Century, using song and dance. Alan Lomax, on a field recording trip to the Sea Islands in 1959, said, “she was on fire to teach America. In my heart, I call her ‘The Mother of Courage of American Black Traditions.’”

Be ready to join in the discussion as we highlight Bessie Jones and her contributions to Negro Spirituals. Join us; bring the family and friends.

Contact us at (510) 869 4359, info@friendsofnegrospirituals.org and visit facebook.com/fns.spiritual for more information.

Friends of Negro Spirituals is a 501 (c) (3) organization.

Join Our Community Christmas Get-Together Celebration

Friends of Negro Spirituals

Friends of Negro Spirituals
Presents
A Free Community Christmas Get-Together Celebration

Welcome and Welcome Back. We Miss You!
All are welcome – Invite your friends

Date:
Saturday, December 19, 2015

Time:
1:00 PM – 3:30 PM

Location:
West Oakland Library
1801 Adeline St. (18th & Adeline, across from DeFremery Park)

The year’s ending; let us come together for:
Community singing
Meeting and greeting new and old friends
Learning about Negro Spirituals
Enjoying healthy salad
Fun activities for children, youth, and adults
Prizes and raffle

Give us a call at (510) 869-4359 or e-mail us at info@friendsofnegrospirituals.org
We are requesting the items below. Please let us know what you’re bringing.

  • Capri Sun juice drink blend
  • Bottled water (small 8 fl. oz.)
  • Green salads
  • Fruit salads
  • Vegetable salads
  • Salads of pasta, legumes, or grains or meat-based
  • Mixed salads incorporating meat, poultry, or seafood (pack in ice, if possible)
  • Dessert salad
  • Cake or cookies
  • I would like to volunteer to help set up at the program

So we may alert people who have allergies, will your salad will contain:

  • Cheese
  • Dairy
  • Nuts
  • Seafood

Please provide your name and phone number (if we need to call you).

Bring a colorful dish that is best served at room temperature, that doesn’t need to be chilled or heated.

Negro Spirituals Heritage Keeper’s Award Honorees Announced

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Friends of Negro Spirituals is proud to announce the honorees who will receive The 2015 Negro Spirituals Heritage Keeper’s Award.

Tiearea Robinson, Negro Spirituals Scholar/Educator
– Nominated by Professor M. Keith Claybrook, Lecturer and Outreach Coordinator, Department of Africana Studies, California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, California

Eugene F. Jones and The Echoes From Jordan, a late performer of Negro Spirituals and founder of The Echoes from Jordan, a disbanded Negro Spirituals singing ensemble that preserved Spirituals and paid for the college education of the then college age James Cook

– Nominated posthumously by Ivy Duncan, member, Friends of Negro Spirituals

Light Devoy Edwin Harris, the late founder of the University of Light and founder and director of The University of Light Jubilee Singers
– Nominated posthumously by Bob Dewhurst

The 2015 awards ceremony takes place on:

Negro Spirituals Heritage Day

Saturday, October 17, 2015
1:30 PM to 3:30 PM

San Francisco Main Library
Koret Auditorium
100 Larkin Street, near Civic Center BART, San Francisco, California
map and directions

Please join The 12th Annual Negro Spirituals Heritage Day program planning committee; your participation would be welcome. Contact (510) 869-4359 or info@friendsofnegrospirituals.org

2015 Negro Spirituals Heritage Day flyer

Friends of Negro Spirituals Accepting Nominations for The Negro Spirituals Heritage Keeper’s Award

Friends of Negro Spirituals and The San Francisco Main Library’s African-American Center Present

12th Annual Negro Spirituals Negro Heritage Day
The Negro Spirituals Heritage Keeper’s Award Nomination Form

2015-Heritage-Keepers-Nomination-FormFor its 12th Annual Negro Spirituals Heritage Day celebration on Saturday, October 17, 2015, Friends of Negro Spirituals will honor 4 living and/or deceased individuals;and/or couples; and/or existing and/or disbanded organizations; and/or ensembles that helped and/or that are helping to keep the Negro Spirituals song and/or its history alive.

In a ceremony, two living and/or deceased youth; and/or young adults; and/or youth; and/or young adult organizations; and/or ensembles will be presented with The Negro Spirituals Heritage Keeper’s Award.

Also, two living and/or deceased adult individuals; and/or couples; and/or existing or disbanded adult organizations; and/or ensembles will be honored with the award.

Each honoree will be “committee selected” from among the nominations submitted and will be chosen based on the strength of the Negro Spirituals preservation activities and the Negro Spirituals history reflected in the nominee’s application. The awards ceremony takes place:

Saturday, October 17, 2015
1:30PM to 3:30PM
San Francisco Main Library’s Koret Auditorium
100 Larkin St. (Civic Center BART)
San Francisco, CA

Please offer your nominations today through the 2015-Heritage-Keepers-Nomination-Form!

Nominations Open until Friday, July 31, 2015
Nominate yourself and/or living and/or deceased youth, young adult; and/or young adult organization or ensembles described above. The two categories and criteria below will be used by the selection committee to select the four 2015 honorees.

The two categories and the standards associated with each are:

  1. Living and/or deceased youth and young adults: individuals, couples, organizations, and/or ensembles that helped and/or that have been helping to keep Spirituals and the history of Spirituals alive for a relatively short period of time, but nonetheless showed or have been showing a strong commitment to helping to keep Spirituals and/or the history alive.
  2. Living and/or deceased adults: individuals, couples, organizations, and/or ensembles that have or once had a long history of helping to keep the Negro Spiritual song and/or its history alive.

No matter the category for which you are nominating yourself or others, the nominee (s) should:

  • Have had or have either a long or a short history of singing or researching, or writing about Negro Spirituals; or presenting programs on Negro Spirituals; or teaching subjects on Negro Spirituals; or preaching sermons on Spirituals; or conducting choirs singing Spirituals; or arranging Spirituals; or promoting the learning about or teaching Spirituals in the home, community, public, or the media; or serving as a faithful helper in or a financial donor to an organization(s) that preserves Spirituals; or
  • Be the type of person whose deep love for or knowledge about Spirituals inspires others to learn about or to become interested in the Spirituals and in helping to keep them alive.

Note:

  • Each honoree and/or a representative of the honoree must be present at the ceremony to accept the award and to;
  •  Present a self selected 15-minute Negro Spirituals education, presenter/audience interactive program.

Meet the Authors of Roland Hayes: The Legacy of an American Tenor

Robert Sims Book Flier-SFA Book and CD Release Signing
presented by San Francisco Public Library and Friends of Negro Spirituals

Sunday, April 12, 2015
2:00 p.m.

San Francisco Main Library
Koret Auditorium – Lower Level
100 Larkin Street near Market Street
San Francisco, California
map and directions

Meet authors Christopher A. Brooks and Robert Sims as they discuss their biography Roland Hayes: The Legacy of An American Tenor with moderator Reverend Amos Brown.

Enjoy a display of Hayes memorabilia by Bill Doggett and hear excerpts of Sims’ latest CD of spirituals arranged by Hayes.

Purchase your book and CD at:
Amazon
iTunes
Barnes & Noble
cdbaby

Contact Friends of Negro Spirituals for more information.

Community Christmastime Get-Together Celebration

Friends of Negro Spirituals
Presents
A Community Christmastime Get-Together Celebration

December 13, 2014 flyer Celebration-v2dtAll Are Welcome
Free and Child Friendly

The end of the year is near! Let’s celebrate each other and FNS. Let’s get together for:
• Community singing
• Meeting and greeting new and old friends
• Learning about Friends of Negro Spirituals
• Negro Spirituals resources
• Fun family activities
• A DVD presentation
• Prizes and raffle
• The famous FNS salad potluck!

Please let us know what salad, dessert or drink you’re bringing to our salad potluck:

Please bring a colorful dish that is best served at room temperature, that doesn’t need to be chilled or heated.

For more information: call (510) 869-4359 or email info@friendsofnegrospirituals.org

Friends of Negro Spirituals is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

The 11th Annual Negro Spirituals Heritage Day

Friends of Negro Spirituals
presents

Feeling the Spirit for Negro Spirituals – A National Treasure
An Event Celebrating The 11th Annual Negro Spirituals Heritage Day in Education and Song
Honoring The 2014 Negro Spirituals Heritage Keepers

Emma Jean Foster Fiege
Emma Jean Foster Fiege
Vocalist and Educator

Othello Jefferson
Othello Jefferson
Music Educator, Pianist

Church of the Fellowship of All Peoples
Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples

rev-carolyn-mathews
Rev. Carolyn Matthews
Theologian and Educator

No matter your age, join us in singing slavery songs such as “Gimme Me Dat’ Old Tim’d ‘Ligion.”

Saturday, October 25, 2014
2:30 PM – 4:30 PM (Doors open at 2:15 PM)

West Oakland Senior Center
1724 Adeline St.
Oakland, CA
map »

Honoring Keepers of the Negro Spirituals heritage, Spirituals, the Ancestors, and presenting
the always welcomed, lively community Negro Spirituals singing

For more information, telephone (510) 869-4359 or email fns3.juno@com.

Free admission, donations welcomed.

he Calls Me by the Thunder … Lightning

he-Calls-Me-flyerFriends of Negro Spirituals presents

he Calls Me by the Thunder … Lightning
Under-considered or Unrecognized West/Central Africa Oral Traditions in Some Folk Spirituals by Sam Edwards, President, Friends of Negro Spirituals

Saturday, August 30, 2014
1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

West Oakland Library
1801 Adeline Street at 18th Street
Oakland

1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m., community meeting
2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., presentation and discussion

This lively and interactive presentation focuses on the much too neglected African side of folk Negro Spirituals. Often seen as idolatry and primitive, African traditional religions, ancestor loyalty, and burial rituals were among the oral traditions highly influential in the lives of many Blacks enslaved in America in the mid 1700s when Spirituals began emerging. Such forces lived long, long after that time and were continuously sung into and through their Spirituals.

Using fresh approaches, our forum highlights songs that “house” early West/Central African traditions and feelings about their suppression, but which are seldom recognized. Be ready to join in discussion as we identify the African side of Spirituals and its contributions in the songs.

Join us; bring the family and friends.

Celebrate Juneteenth with Song

Friends of Negro Spirituals Juneteenth CelebrationFriends of Negro Spirituals presents a celebration of Juneteenth, the day in 1865 when the news of the Emancipation Proclamation finally reached the slaves in Texas.

This year’s celebration includes:

  • A community sing of spirituals guided by song leaders with narration of songs’ history and meaning
  • Drumming and praise dance
  • Poetry and solos

Featuring:
Songo Sangodogbon – Drummer, Ritualist (Libation)
Ron Williams – Lead Drummer
Sankofa Akili Dance Company
Adriane Gauding – Solo
Helen Dilworth – Song leader, ensemble with Adriane and Bisola, and Solo
Angela Thomas – Song leader and introductions
Emma Jean Foster – Duet with Bisola Marignay & Solo
Odinma – Reading, Recitation and Song: Bisola Marignay and Lionel Tanner
Charles Curtis Blackwell & Marylyn Reynolds – Poem and Song

Come add your voice to this special event. Join us, too, for a delicious bread-breaking feast.

All ages are welcome. Bring the children!

Questions? Call (510) 869-4359 or use our contact form.