Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame
The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is a non-profit organization that honors jazz, blues and gospel musicians in the state of Oklahoma. Housed in the former Tulsa Union Depot, which it now calls the Jazz Depot, the Hall of Fame is a music venue that hosts regular jazz performances. It is also a museum, displaying photographs, biographical information, artifacts, and memorabilia from musicians such as Chet Baker, Earl Bostic, Barney Kessel, Charlie Christian, Tommy Crook, Pat Kelley, and Jimmy Rushing.
|Founder||Senator Maxine Horner, Co-Founder|
Senator Penny Williams, Co-Founder
|Type||501(c)(3) Nonprofit organization|
The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame holds an annual induction ceremony to recognize the meaningful contributions of individuals and groups in jazz, blues, and gospel music. The Hall of Fame originally inducted its members every June, but the annual induction is now held in November. To date, the Hall of Fame has inducted more than 100 musicians and groups. Music instructor Zelia N. Breaux was the first inductee into the Hall of Fame.
The Hall of Fame also established the Jay McShann Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999 to honor musicians who enriched Oklahoma's music during their lifetimes. Recipients of this award include Jay McShann, John Hendricks, Lou Donaldson, Dave Brubeck, Marilyn Maye, Ramsey Lewis, Nat King Cole, George Duke, Billy Taylor, Eddie Palmieri, Bob Wills, and Lalo Schifrin.
In 1991, guitarist Barney Kessel made a speech about improvised music at the Hall of Fame; this was his last recorded public appearance before a stroke forced him to retire in May 1992. Singer Joe Lee Wilson also made his last public performance at his 2010 induction into the Hall of Fame.
The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame was established by the Oklahoma Legislature in 1988, with legislation authored by State Senators Maxine Horner and Penny Williams. The Hall of Fame was one of several organizations created in the North Tulsa “renaissance” dedicated to reconstructing the city’s historic Greenwood district after the Tulsa Race Riot. The organization was originally housed in the Greenwood Cultural Center, and co-sponsored a yearly celebration of Oklahoman black music tradition called “Juneteenth on Greenwood.”
In 2004, Tulsa County’s Vision 2025 project allocated $4 million to purchase and renovate the Tulsa Union Depot for use by the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame. Work on the building was completed and the building officially opened on June 19, 2007.
In November, 2020, The Tulsa County Industrial Authority (TCIA) filed a lawsuit to terminate the building lease with the Jazz Hall and to recover $8,474 in past-due taxes and utilities. The suit alleged that the Jazz Hall was so far behind in its utility payments that electricity to the building was turned off on October 19th. In January of 2021 the Jazz Hall declared bankruptcy. On June 10, 2021, the bankruptcy court approved a $200,000 sale of the Jazz Hall, along with transfer of the lease of the Depot, to a new non-profit entity, The Jazz Foundation LLC, being a firm established by local businessman James Moore. The bid included a pledge of $1 million for deferred maintenance and other improvements, along with $1 million available for operating expenses and to satisfy future obligations under the lease with TCIA. Stated future Jazz Hall plans call for continued celebration of jazz and gospel artists in Oklahoma, expanding to host music festivals and live TV events, and creating a rooftop restaurant.
List of inducteesEdit
|Andrea Baker||Vocal, Education||2005|
|Chet Baker||Trumpet, Vocal||1991|
|Samuel Aaron Bell||Bass||1992|
|Wayne Bennett||Guitar, Vocal||2001|
|Elvin Bishop||Guitar, Vocal||1998|
|Zelia N. Breaux||Education||1989|
|David Amram||F Horn||2011|
|Charles Burton||Guitar, Vocal||2001|
|Willie Earl Clark||Saxophone, Education||2002|
|Pam Van Dyke Crosby||Vocal||2008|
|Jesse Ed Davis||Guitar||2002|
|Elmer L. Davis||Vocal||1993|
|Rae Degeer||Clarinet, Alto Saxophone||2014|
|Thomas A. Dorsey||Piano||1994|
|Ernie Fields Jr.||Saxophone||1996|
|Ernie Fields Sr.||Trombone||1989|
|Fisk Jubilee Singers||Vocal||2012|
|Lowell Fulson||Guitar, Vocal||1989|
|Earl Grant||Piano, Vocal||2013|
|Sonny Gray||Piano, Education||2001|
|Wardell Gray||Tenor Saxophone||2014|
|John David Henry||Guitar||2001|
|Robbie Mack McLerran||Bass||2014|
|Roy Milton||Vocal, Drums||1991|
|D.C. Minner||Guitar, Vocal||1999|
|Ace Moreland Jr.||Guitar, Harmonica, Vocal||2007|
|Oscar Pettiford||Bass, Cello||1995|
|Sara Jordan Powell||Vocal||2003|
|Ray D. Rowe||Vocal||2008|
|James Rushing||Vocal, Piano||1990|
|Pee Wee Russell||Clarinet||2011|
|Donald Ryan||Piano, Education||2006|
|Jessie Mae Renfro Sapp||Vocal||1989|
|Rudy Scott||Piano, Harmonica||2011|
|Lynn Seaton||Bass, Education||2006|
|Shadow Lake Eight||Band||2013|
|Maurice Spears||Trombone, Education||2004|
|Louie Spears||Bass, Education||2004|
|Flash Terry||Guitar, Vocal||1994|
|Oklahoma City Blue Devils||Big Band||1990|
|Walter "Foots" Thomas||Saxophone||1996|
|Glenn R. Townsend||Guitar||2004|
|David T. Walker||Guitar||1999|
|Hart A. Wand||Fiddle||2012|
|Steve Wilkerson||Saxophone, Education||2005|
|Joe Lee Wilson||Vocal||2010|
|Terry Woodson||Trombone, Education||2010|
|Joe William Wright||Drums||2012|
- "Facility Rental". Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame. Retrieved June 23, 2020.
- Danilov, Victor J. ‘’Hall of Fame Museums: A Reference Guide.’’ Greenwood, 1997, p.180
- Johnson, Hannibal B. ‘’Black Wall Street: From Riot to Renaissance in Tulsa’s Historic Greenwood District.’’ Marion Koogler McNay Art Museum, 1998, p.130
- BRANDY MCDONNELL. "David Amram will receive Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame's Lifetime Achievement Award". News OK. Retrieved 2016-05-07.
- "Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame". Okjazz.org. Retrieved 2016-05-07.
- Yanow, Scott. ‘’Jazz On Film: The Complete Story of the Musicians and Music Onscreen.’’ Backbeat, 2004, p.22
- "Obituaries". Tulsa World. Retrieved 2016-05-07.
- "H-Net Reviews". H-net.org. Retrieved 2016-05-07.
- State Arts Council of Oklahoma. ‘’Juneteenth on Greenwood: A Celebration of Oklahoma’s Black Music Traditions.’’ State Arts Council of Oklahoma, 1989, p.2
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 3, 2011. Retrieved March 14, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on March 15, 2012. Retrieved March 14, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame files for bankruptcy; eviction, lawsuit on hold". Kevin Canfield, Tulsa World, January 16, 2021. Retrieved January 16, 2021.
- "Bankruptcy court OKs Jazz Hall sale to Tulsan's firm: 'The only game in town'". Tulsa World, June 11, 2021. Retrieved June 11, 2021.
- Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame website