Friday, October 22, 2010

Marques Carroll Chicago Blues Project

On Wednesday night I added Marques Carroll to the growing list of artists I'm featuring in my Chicago Blues Portrait project. Marques is an amazing trumpeter, composer, teacher and community organizer. After spending some time with him I realized not only did he truly love music, but he wants to help the community with it as well. Marques heads up an after school program in Chicago as well as teaching on the city's east side. It seems he was strongly influenced by his father and grandfather. His father an graphic designer and artist and his grandfather a trumpet player. He told me a great story about his grandfather starting a brass program for kids in St. Louis in the 50's. During that time racial tensions were high, gangs were a part of life and he lived in St. Louis, the gateway to the south. The after school program, like many today, helped get kids off the street, out of gangs and focused on something positive. When his grandfather passed away many of the kids from his program attended the funeral and credited him for saving their lives. I loved that story. It moved me and obviously Marquess too. You can check out Marques with Guy King the BMC (Booty Movement Coalition) and about 20 other bands around the city. Check out all the photos here.

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