Jazz Beat: Bobby Watson’s I Have a Dream Band plays the Blue Room Friday night

In 2013, saxophonist Bobby Watson commemorated the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech with his album Check Cashing Day. The title references King’s declaration in the speech that “we’ve come to the nation’s capital to cash a check” for equality. Watson brought together pianist Richard Johnson, bassist Curtis Lundy, drummer Eric Kennedy, trumpeter Hermon Mehari, trombonist Karita Carter and the late Horace Washington on flute, with the poetry of Glenn North and vocals by Pamela Baskin-Watson, Bobby’s wife. The CD resonates with an inspiring blend of spoken word and bebop performed by jazz masters. Watson’s I Have a Dream band reunites Friday, for a performance that ties in with the American Jazz Museum’s special exhibition Jazz Speaks for Life, which showcases the interweaving of jazz and the civil rights movement.

Bobby Watson’s I Have a Dream Band
8:30 p.m. Friday, July 8
The Blue Room, 1600 East 18th Street ($20)

Categories: Music