Multicultural music fest to go big at Tucson High

2013-03-14T00:00:00Z Multicultural music fest to go big at Tucson HighGerald M. Gay Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
March 14, 2013 12:00 am  • 

A multicultural music festival headlined by several classic R&B acts will roll out at Tucson High Magnet School Sunday.

More than 20 artists will perform at the inaugural Tucson Spring Jam, including Elaine Stepter, who toured with the band Rose Royce, the Floaters of "Float On" fame, and Brenton Wood, who achieved fame with his 1960s hits, "The Oogum Boogum Song" and "Gimme Little Sign."

The all-day concert will run the musical spectrum, from jazz, mariachi and reggae to gospel, classic rock and singer-songwriter fare.

It will take place on the school's football field, and is being organized by the Phoenix-based Northwest Black History Committee, a group that has held music events in the Phoenix area for more than 15 years.

Part of the proceeds will go toward Tucson High's fine arts department.

Spokesman Aubrey Morris said this weekend's concert is the result of an increasing number of people from Tucson who have driven up to see their concerts in recent years.

"We kept hearing that we needed to bring something like this down to Tucson," Morris said. "A lot of events use the term 'multicultural,' but then you get there and it is almost all country and Western, hip-hop, Tejano. This is truly a multicultural event."

The concert is bringing in artists from all over the country, many whom have worked with the Black History Committee in the past.

Notable national names include Jerry Lawson, the original lead singer of the Persuasions; the Windy City Spiritualaires from Chicago; and blues guitarist Dave Riley.

Among the local acts: singer-songwriter LeeAnne Savage, the rock band Five Way Street, The Tryst, "American Idol" alumna Crystal Stark and Tora Woloshin, who appeared on both "Idol" and "The X Factor."

T. Richard Smith, host of the classic R&B show "Impak" Saturday nights on KXCI (91.3-FM), will serve as one of the emcees.

Smith acted as a consultant for the show.

"They weren't as familiar with the Tucson market, so we discussed what groups we should bring in," Smith said. "To see people like Brenton Wood, the Floaters, even Jerry Lawson, that's a blessing."

Morris said ticket sales have been solid so far. He hopes the sheer number of acts performing will bring in fans of all genres.

"We decided to go big," Morris said. "There's no impression like the first impression."

If you go

• What: Tucson Spring Jam 2013.

• When: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday.

• Where: Tucson High Magnet School, 400 N. Second Ave.

• Tickets: $25 in advance through Al's Barbershop, Antigone Books, Bookmans, KXCI, Las Cazuelitas and showclix.com $30 the day of the show.

• Info: tucsonspringjam.org

Contact reporter Gerald M. Gay at ggay@azstarnet.com or 807-8430.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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