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The Colored Waiting Room
Check out the latest CD project, "The Colored Waiting Room," by Dr. Guthrie Ramsey, pianist, composer, music historian and professor of music at the University of Pennsylvania. Ramsey's project title is both a "remembrance and a recovery, recalling a time when black passengers were confined to segregated waiting rooms before they travelled by bus or by rail." Ramsey notes that these waiting rooms were spaces of confinement, but also offered a form of freedom as they provided a space for free expression, away from a broader (and racist) public.
The CD is performed by Ramsey's band, Dr. Guy's Musiqology and imagines the colored waiting room as a nightclub. In a short film, Ramsey explains the project:
Dr. Ramsey being interviewed for "The Colored Waiting Room."
Including everything from jazz, hip hop, gospel, neo sol, classical, latin, r&b, stories, and poetry, the CD features artists from New York, Atlanta, Philladelphia, Chicago, and Memphis. "The Colored Waiting Room "is comprised of Ramsey's arrangements and compositions, and collaborations with Elizabeth Alexander, Jerry Thompson, June Townes,Greg Payne and Ramsey's daughter and son. Poet, critic, and African Americanist scholar, Kathy Lou Schultz, has written three poems for Ramsey's project and performs them on the CD.