Monday, May 21, 2012

Jammin' for Jack

20"x 30" - Oil on Canvas

I painted this a few months ago in honor of my dear friend, the late Jack McCray.  We would hang out "back in the day" at my childhood friend Wendell Johnson's house.  If you knew Jack, you probably "hung out" with him too.  I was a young single mom, not willing to do the club scene, working hard at teaching and photographing weddings and other events.  This was my social outlet.  What a good time we had - Wendell, Jack, Osei Chandler, Alluette Jones, Renee Gaters, Wilmot "Al" Frazier, Yardy Whitney, just to name a few... a steady stream of cool folks, great music and intellectual conversations. 

   Once we even entertained an African delegation here on an official visit that Jack had been asked to host locally.  He wanted to give them a little taste of our Charleston.  I asked my uncle Charlie Mikell to do the food for us...Lowcountry Fare - red rice, fried chicken and fish, a mess of crabs... We sipped a little wine, the music was awesome, several local friends stopped by... They loved it all, even though none of the delegates spoke English.  We communicated through their French/English interpreters who were also traveling with the group. 

This painting features the wonderful Quentin Baxter and Charlton Singleton among other musicians at Jack's Jazz funeral last Fall. 

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