Women and Jazz: Transforming a Nation
Jazz Appreciation Month 2011 – the 10th Anniversary – examines the legacies of jazz women, and their advocates, who helped transform race, gender and social relations in the U.S. in the quest to build a more just and equitable nation. The International Sweethearts of Rhythm, founded in 1937 at the Piney Woods School in Mississippi, will be the focus of the JAM Launch, a museum display and special online and public programming offered by the National Museum of American History to highlight the unique legacy of the school that music built and their dynamic, women’s jazz band.
The National Museum of American History (NMAH) has developed a 2011 JAM poster of the legendary jazz artist Mary Lou Williams to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Jazz Appreciation Month in April, 2011. The innovative jazz pianist, composer, and arranger who performed with Andy Kirk and the Clouds of Joy, Duke Ellington, and others is one of a handful of women jazz artists included in the new Jazz: The Smithsonian Anthology that examines the history of jazz in music and narrative.