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Free Jazz Concert Aims to Give Jamaica Workers a Midweek Boost

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | September 25, 2013 7:36am
 Graham Haynes will perform in Jamaica this Wednesday.
Graham Haynes will perform in Jamaica this Wednesday.
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Graham Haynes/Facebook

QUEENS — Looking to give the after-work crowd a midweek boost, jazz and hip-hop musicians will give a free concert Wednesday evening at the 165th Street Mall in downtown Jamaica.

Graham Haynes, a Hollis-born cornetist and trumpeter, and the youngest son of well-known jazz drummer Roy Haynes, will be among the musicians.

Poet and performance artist Queen GodIs, whose work blends hip-hop with soul music and storytelling, will also perform, as well as Tom Zlabinger, a coordinator of music at York College and a professional bass player, who will play jazz with the York College Creative Ensemble.

The artists will play both classics and original music, the organizers said.

“We hope to attract the after-work crowd, people who are already here,” said Felicia Tunnah, executive director of the Jamaica Center Business Improvement District, which organizes the concert.

Tunnah said about 260,000 people come to Jamaica each day to work, shop and visit.

“We want to give locals and visitors a reason to fall in love with downtown Jamaica,” Tunnah said.

She said hip-hop and jazz were chosen as the event's musical style as a “tribute to some of the most iconic artists and musical styles that have thrived in Jamaica.”

The concert is part of the “Queens Royalty” campaign, recently launched by the Jamaica Center BID. The campaign also organizes art exhibits and late-night events to encourage local businesses to stay open later. Another concert is planned for October, Tunnah said.

The hip-hop and jazz concert will take place on the 165th Street Mall on Wednesday, Sept. 25, 5:30-7:30 p.m. (rain date: Sept. 26). For more information, go here.