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Archive for the ‘Black Playwright’ Category


Black Page March 10, 2018

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Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For October 27

1. Ruby Dee,  actress, poet, playwright, screenwriter, journalist, and activist, perhaps best known for co-starring in the film A Raisin in the Sun (1961) and the film American Gangster (2007) for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.


Events In African American History For Sept 28

1. In 1829, Walker’s Appeal, antislavery pamphlet, published in Boston by David Walker.The Appeal denounced slavery and called for slave revolt.

2. In 1868, Opelousas Massacre, St. Landry Parish, Louisiana. Terrorists killed 200  Blacks although other reports put the number well over 300.

3. In 1897, J. H. Haines received Patent for Portable Basin

4. In 1961, Purlie Victorious, a play by playwright Ossie Davis, opened on Broadway.

5. In 1967, Walter E. Washington, Lawyer, became the first Black mayor of a major American city, Washington, DC.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For Sept 23

Tiny Bradshaw

1. Tiny Bradshaw, jazz and rhythm and blues bandleader, singer, composer, pianist, and drummer from Youngstown, Ohio.  After graduating from Wilberforce University with a degree in psychology, Bradshaw turned to music for a living.  In Ohio, he sang with Horace Henderson’s campus oriented Collegians.  Then, in 1932, Bradshaw relocated to New York City, where he drummed for Marion Hardy, the Charleston Bearcats (later the Savoy Bearcats), and the Mills Blue Rhythm Band, and sang for Luis Russell.

Albert Ammons

2. Albert Ammons, pianist, was a player of boogie-woogie, a bluesy jazz style that swept the United States from the late 1930s into the mid 1940s.

John William Coltrane

3. John William Coltrane (also known as “Trane”) was a jazz saxophonist and composer. Working in the bebop and hard bop idioms early in his career, Coltrane helped pioneer the use of modes in jazz and later was at the forefront of free jazz. He was prolific, organizing at least fifty recording sessions as a leader during his recording career, and appeared as a sideman on many other albums, notably with trumpeter Miles Davis and pianist Thelonious Monk.

MIghty Joe Young

4. MIghty Joe Young, blues guitarist known for playing Chicago blues.  one of the busiest sidemen in Chicago from the late 1950s.  He was in Otis Rush’s band for several years in the 1960s, and played on Magic Sam’s albums, West Side Soul and Black Magic.  He recorded his own solo album, Blues with a Touch of Soul, for Delmark Records in 1971.   Young also worked alongside Willie Dixon, Billy Boy Arnold and Jimmy Rogers.   Young’s song, “Turning Point”, appeared in the Michael Mann feature film, Thief (1981).

Ray Charles

5. Ray Charles, Singer/Composer/Piano Player (Makin’ Whoopi), He was a pioneer in the genre of soul music during the 1950s by fusing rhythm and blues, gospel, and blues styles into his early recordings with Atlantic Records

Fenton Robinson

6. Fenton Robinson,  blues singer and exponent of the Chicago blues guitar. His signature song, “Somebody Loan Me a Dime” (1967) was covered by Boz Scaggs in 1969, but attributed to Scaggs himself, resulting in legal battles. The nationwide distribution of Robinson’s own version of the song was aborted by a freak snow storm hitting Chicago. The song has since become a blues standard, according to 1997’s Encyclopedia of Blues being “part of the repertoire of one out of every two blues artists.

Ben E. King

7. Ben E. King (Benjamin Earl Nelson), R&B Artist, Lead singer for the Dirfters.  Went solo and released “Stand By Me”   in 1961 and re-released in 1986 as a theme song for a movie of the same name and once again reaching the top 10. 

George C. Wolfe

8. George C. Wolfe, Playwright and director of theater and film.  Jelly’s Last Jam, Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk

Chi McBride

9. Chi McBride, actor. He starred as Steven Harper on the series Boston Public, as Emerson Cod on Pushing Daisies, and recently appeared in Fox’s drama Human Target.

LisaRaye McCoy

10. LisaRaye McCoy, commonly known as LisaRaye, is an actress and fashion designer. She is also the former First Lady of the Turks and Caicos Islands. She is best known for portraying Diana “Diamond” Armstrong in the film The Players Club and Neesee James on the CW sitcom All of Us from 2003 until 2007.

Jermaine Dupri

10. Jermaine Dupri Maulidin, Grammy Award Winning Hip-Hop Recording Executive. 

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For Sept 04

 Lewis H. Latimer

1. Lewis H. Latimer, inventor and engineer, he copatented (with Charles W. Brown) an improved toilet system for railroad cars called the Water Closet for Railroad Cars (U.S. Patent 147,363).

Latimer received a patent in January 1881 for the “Process of Manufacturing Carbons”, an improved method for the production of carbon filaments used in lightbulbs.

Latimer is an inductee of the National Inventors Hall of Fame for his work on electric filament manufacturing techniques.

Latimer was a founding member of the Flushing, New York Unitarian Church. Latimer’s home has been moved to a small park in Flushing, New York and turned into a museum in honor of the inventor.

Meade Lewis

2. Meade (Lux) Lewis,  pianist and composer, noted for his work in the boogie-woogie style. His best known work, “Honky Tonk Train Blues”, has been recorded in various contexts, often in a big band arrangement.[2] Early recordings of the piece by artists other than Lewis include performances by Adrian Rollini, Frankie Trumbauer, classical harpsichordist Sylvia Marlowe, theater organist George Wright (with drummer Cozy Cole, under the title “Organ Boogie”), and Bob Zurke with Bob Crosby’s orchestra. Keith Emerson of Emerson, Lake & Palmer often included it in his repertoire and recorded it in 1972.

Richard Wright

3. Richard Wright, Writer (Native Son, The Fire Next Time), author of sometimes controversial novels,short stories and non-fiction. Much of his literature concerns racial themes, especially those involving the plight of African-Americans during the 19th century. His work helped redefine discussions of race relations in America in the mid-20th century.

Frank White

4. Frank White,  former Major League Baseball player, and coach for the Kansas City Royals and their AA affiliate, the Wichita Wranglers. He currently is a color commentator for Royals telecasts..

Damon Wayans

5. Damon Wayans, is an American stand-up comedian, writer and actor, one of the Wayans brothers.

Nona Gaye

6. Nona Gaye, singer, former fashion model, and screen actress. The daughter of soul music legend Marvin Gaye and granddaughter of jazz great Slim Gaillard, she began her career as a vocalist in the early 1990s. As an actress, she is best known for her portrayal of Zee in the science fiction films The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions.


7. Beyoncé (born Beyoncé Giselle Knowles) is a pop/RnB singer, songwriter, record producer, actress and model. Beyoncé was named Billboard’s Top Female Artist of the 2000s in February 2009 as well as their Artist of the Millennium in May 2011. She was the RIAA’s top certified and best-selling overall artist of the decade and the NRJ Music Awards also awarded her as their Artist of the Decade in France.

Events In African American History For Aug 12

1. In 1989, Baby Face Debuts on the pop chart with (It’s No Crime).

2. In 1990, August Wilson’s play “The Piano Lesson” wins the Pulitzer Prize for drama.

3. In 1992, Dedication of Frederick Douglass’ home in DC as national shrine.

4. In 2009, President Barack Obama awards the Presidential Medal Of Honor to Sidney Poitier, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and 14 others.

Events In African American History For Aug 06

1. In 1795, Absalom Jones is ordained a deacon in the Protestant Episcopal Church.

2. In 1854, Congress passed Confiscation Act, authorizing the appropriation of the property, including slaves, of rebel slaveholders.

3. In 1870,  In one of the most brazenly racist incidents of the post-Civil War period, white conservatives and racists employ assassinations and widespread violence to suppress the black vote and take control of the Tennessee legislature from a coalition of blacks and progressive whites. The violence and the election effectively ended Reconstruction in the state.

4. In 1872, Elijah McCoy received Patent for Lubricator for steam engines

5. In 1925, African American lawyers organize the National Bar Association and name George H. Woodson of Des Moines, Iowa, as President, and Wendell Gree of Chicago, Illinois, as Secretary.

6. In 1934, United States troops leave Haiti, which it had occupied since 1915.

7. In 1941, Blacks started being inducted into the U.S. military in April 1941, resulting in a series of violent incidents between black soldiers and white soldiers and between black soldiers and white civilians.

The first major incident takes place on this day in August 1941. A group of black soldiers board a bus in Fayetteville, N. C., headed to Ft. Bragg. The white driver complains they are being “rowdy” and asks for help from the military police (MPs). The MPs arrive and begin hitting the blacks with nightsticks. One of the black men grabs an MP’s gun and begins shooting. Additional fighting and shooting break out. When the dust settled, one black private and one white MP were dead and two whites and three blacks had been wounded.
This is the first of a series of serious racial incidents (between African American and white soldiers and African American soldiers and white civilians) which will continue throughout the war.

8. In 1952, Satchel Paige, at age 46, becomes the oldest pitcher to complete a major-league baseball game. Paige, pitching for the Cleveland Indians, shuts out the Detroit Tigers 1-0 in a 12-inning game.

9. In 1962, Jamaica becomes independent after 300 years of British rule.

10. In 1963, Little Stevie Wonder’s “Fingertips, Part 2” is the #1 Soul chart hit.

11. In 1965, The Voting Rights Act is signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in the same room that Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., and a host of others witness the signing of the act, which suspends the use of literary tests and calls for federal examiners to ensure fair elections in the South.

12. In 1969, The Learning Tree, directed by Gordon Parks, Jr., premieres. The film is the first directed by an African American in modern times.

13. In 1973, Stevie Wonder is nearly killed in an automobile accident near Durham, North Carolina, where he was to perform in a benefit concert. Wonder suffers severe brain contusions and a fractured skull and will be in a coma for ten days as a result of his injuries.

14. In 1984, Carl Lewis wins 2nd (long jump) of 4 gold medals in the Summer Olympics.

15. In 1988, Once accused by African American artists of racism, MTV, the 24-hour cable music channel, premieres “Yo! MTV Raps.” It will become one of the station’s most popular programs.

16. In 1994, In Wedowee, Alabama, an apparent arson fire destroys Randolph County High School, which had been the focus of tensions over the principal’s stand against interracial dating.

17. In 1996, Officials announce that the Air Force had punished 16 officers in connection with the crash that killed Commerce Secretary Ron Brown and 34 others the previous April.

18. In 2009, President Barack Obama Signed The Cash For Clunkers Extention Bill

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For Aug 02

1. Sarah Mapps Douglass, Educator and abolitionist.

2. Robert “Bob” Beamon, former track and field athlete, best known for his long-standing world record in the long jump at the Mexico Olympics in 1968, which remained the world record for 23 years. This is the second longest holding of this record, as Jesse Owens held the record for 25 years, 1935-1960.

3. Joseph Bass, teacher, businessman and newspaper editor.

4. Walter Travis Price, singer and pianist.  Though he never had a national hit, he is often referred to as a blues legend.

5. James Baldwin, one of the most prolific and influential African American authors of fiction (“Go Tell it on the Mountain”, “Another Country”, “Giovanni’s Room”), drama (“Blues for Mr. Charlie”, “Amen Corner”), and essay collections (“Notes of a Native Son”, “The Fire Next Time”).

6. Philippa Duke Schuyler, child prodigy and pianist who became famous in the 1930s and 1940s as a result of her talent

7. Homer Banks, songwriter, singer and record producer, best known for his songs for Stax Records in the 1960s and 1970s

8. Jewell Jackson McCabe founded the National Coalition of 100 Black Women as a leadership forum to engage professional black women in a network to meet their career needs and the needs of their communities and to facilitate their access to mainstream America.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For July 28

1. James Presley Ball, Abolitionist, free Black man, photographer and businessman.

2. Queen Mother Audley Moore, Founder/Universal Association/Ethiopian Women

3. Isaac L. “Banjo Ikey” Robinson, banjoist and vocalist. played and recorded with Jelly Roll Morton, Clarence Williams, and Jabbo Smith during 1928-1929.

4. Chester Himes, writer whose novels and autobiographies explore the absurdity of racism.

5. Junior Kimbrough, bluesman from Mississippi. His best known work included “Keep Your Hands Off Her” and “All Night Long”.

6. Evelyn Dilworth-Williams, poet, teacher, author, and motivational speaker.

7. Vida Rochelle Blue Jr., is a former Major League Baseball left-handed starting pitcher. In a 17-year career, he played for the Oakland Athletics, San Francisco Giants, and Kansas City Royals.

8. Soulja Boy, born DeAndre Ramone Way Rapp Artist and record producer.

Events In African American History For July 25

1. In 1876, T. A. Carrington received Patent for Range

2. In 1899, B. F. Cargill received Patent for Invalid cot

3. In 1916, Inventor of the gas mask, Garrett T Morgan, rescues six from gas-filled tunnel in Cleveland, Ohio

4. In 1921, Liberty Life Insurance Company, a forerunner to Supreme Life Insurance Company, at one time one of the largest African American owned insurance companies in the nation, is founded by Frank L. Gillespie

5. In 1943, First warship named for a Black person, the SS Leonard Roy Harmon.

6. In 1970, Charles Cordone won Pulitzer Prize for his play (No Place to Be Somebody).

7. In 1972, Health Officials admitted using black males in syphillis Experiment in Tuskeegee Al.

8. In 1991, Dennis Hightower is promoted to president of Disney Consumer Products-Europe/Middle East.

9. In 1992, The Buffalo Soldier Monument was dedicated by General Colin L. Powell in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

10. In 2002, Black Enterprise publisher Earl G. Graves and Magic Johnson sign an agreement to purchase Pepsi-Cola of Washington, D.C., becoming the largest minority controlled Pepsi-Cola franchise in the country

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