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World Renowned Bar-Kays Close Out the Year with Benefit Gala

BarKeys

By Sheri Neely

The legendary Bar-Kays celebrated 50 years in the music industry with a red carpet gala with friends and fans from all across the country on Thursday, December 4 at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts in Memphis. Hosted by Elise Neal and Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, performances included George Clinton, ConFunkShun, The Dazz Band, Mary Jane Girls, Willie Clayton, Sir Charles Jones, Jazze Pha, The SOS Band, Doug E. Fresh and the reunion of the United We Funk All-Stars. Special guest appearances included David Porter, Al Bell, Otis Redding, III, daughter of Rick James Ty James and Cherelle.

The benefit gala supported the Bar-Kays coined “Fab Five” nonprofit organizations: The Down Syndrome Association of Memphis & the Mid-South, St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, United Way of the Mid-South, The STAX Music Academy and The Allen Jones/Marjorie Barringer/Bar-Kays Scholarship Fund in support of LeMoyne Owen College.

Special presentations were made at a private VIP reception sponsored by the Hard Rock Café Memphis downtown on Beale Street. The Bar-Kays’ James Alexander and Larry Dodson, Sr. were presented with their honorary guitars from Hard Rock Cafe of Memphis’ general manager Julien Salley and Memphis & Shelby County Music commissioner Johnnie Walker.

They received awards and special presentations at the gala as well, including a proclamation from the State of Tennessee presented by Congressman Steve Cohen. They also received a presentation from the City of Los Angeles by award-winning filmmaker Keith O’Derek. The Bar-Kays performed during the historical WattsStax Music Festival held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on August 20, 1972.  Organized by Memphis’ Stax Records to commemorate the seventh anniversary of the Watts riots, it is known as one of the top most important civil rights contributions to music history.

The red carpet gala was followed by a private VIP after party which was also held on Beale Street and sponsored by BB King’s Blues Club and Restaurant. It was attended by many of the performers and special guests from the gala.

Legendary Jazz Chanteuse, Barbara Morrison, is Nominated for a Grammy

Barbara MorrisonLOS ANGELES, CA- The dazzling Miss Barbara Morrison’s achievements within the community and music have been paying off. She has been nominated for a 2015 Grammy for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.” In addition to her nomination, she will also be coming to the Arrowhead Elks in San Bernardino on Sunday, December 28 where she will be doing a Pre-New Years Eve concert and performing a special blend of Jazz, Blues, and Gospel.

Morrison will be bringing her quartet along with her to perform. The concert starts at 4 p.m. and doors open at 3:30 p.m. General admission tickets are $25 and $55 for VIP and a meet and greet. All proceeds will benefit The Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles. The Arrowhead Elks is located at 1073 Mt. Vernon in San Bernardino (92411).

Embark on a Magical Train Ride and visit Santa Claus

Santa

PERRIS, CA- Embark on a magical train ride and visit with Santa Claus at his North Pole workshop on December 7, 13, 14, 20, and 21. You can ride the train where elves will lead families in Christmas songs, holiday trivia games and storytelling. Santa greets the guests as they arrive at the workshop.

Visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus at a play area where children can experience Thomas train tables, a child-powered roller coaster and crafts. Enjoy holiday treats while waiting to board your train and a child-size train ride ($2).

Train times are 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5:30 p.m., and 7 p.m. Trains fill up fast, so it is advised to call the museum for reservations at (951) 943-3020. Prices for non-members, ages 12 and up are $15; ages 5 to 11 are $10; and ages 2 to 4 are $5. Member prices for ages 12 and up are $8 and ages 2 to 11 are $5. For more information, please visit at www.oerm.org.