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‘Black Is Beautiful: The Photography of Kwame Brathwaite,’ closing March 1

Sunday afternoon, Feb. 23, at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco was an opportunity to see what Black Joy looks like. While Africans in Oakland were celebrating what makes us a people, in San Francisco, artists, curators and scholars were discussing Kwame Brathwaite’s work in the “Black is Beautiful: The Photography of Kwame Brathwaite” exhibit up through March 1. More than a tangible aesthetic enumerated, Brathwaite’s “Beautiful” is an opportunity to reflect on the many ways through the ages Blackness – while commodified – transgressed and transcended, even morphed into something completely incomprehensible (in that moment) like Charlie Parker’s “Koko“ or Dizzy Gillespie’s “Shaw ‘Nuff” or John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme.”

Wanda’s Picks for April 2016

“Dr. Mutulu Is Welcome Here” is the title of the campaign and the program Malcolm X Grassroots Movement hosted Easter Sunday, Resurrection Day, in Oakland. As we walked into Sole Space, a venue that also sells shoes and art and is a part of the corner building that houses Oakstop, we were invited to pose with a photo of Dr. Shakur. Mama Ayanna, seated at the door, welcomes and greets comrades and friends of friends as other members of MXGM host the program.

‘Miles Ahead’

Let me be the first to say that “Miles Ahead,” the film about the legendary trumpet player Miles Davis, is completely and utterly terrible and devoid of historical information. I’ve been a huge fan of Miles Davis’ music and also the acting of the man who plays Miles, Don Cheadle. Cheadle lost major points with me in this disgusting move to defile the legacy of one of the greatest internationally known trumpet players in history.

Original Black Panther Elbert ‘Big Man’ Howard broadcasts jazz liberation

As a founding member of the Black Panther Party at the age of 28, Howard swiftly became the party’s minister of information, editing the group’s official newspaper, traveling to Japan as a spokesman and initiating a free medical clinic for sickle-cell anemia and a work-study program for parolees at Merritt College. Now, at age 78, Elbert "Big Man" Howard hosts Jazz Connections, a biweekly jazz show on KRCB-FM in Rohnert Park, and Jazz Styles, a monthly show on KOWS-FM in Sebastopol – playing the same music that he and his comrades relaxed and shared ideas to 50 years ago.

African American classical music: Renaissance woman P. Kujichagulia speaks

On Sunday, Feb. 1, 1-3 p.m., to kick off Black History Month, she will be giving a lecture called “Racism and All That Jazz” on African American classical music, aka Jazz, in the Koret Auditorium at the San Francisco Main Library, 100 Larkin St. “I’m honored to have the fabulous Yemanya Napue, percussionists Val Serrant and Sosu Ayansolo and visual artist Duane Deterville collaborate with me on this presentation,” she says.

Randy Weston’s ‘Roots of the Blues’

On his new album, “The Roots of the Blues,” Randy Weston teams up with tenor saxophonist Billy Harper. Weston and Harper, like Weston and the late trombonist and arranger Melba Liston, go together like two straws in a coke. The 13 tracks on this album are mostly original compositions by Weston.

Ted Pontiflet says farewell to Oakland

Ted Pontiflet is an Oakland icon. He is East Coast swing meets West Coast bop. Classy. The man is too smooth to be close to 80. Ted is around until Dec. 1 and then away he goes.

The death of Sister Soul

From the first time I ever heard of Abbey Lincoln she was associated with the struggle for the freedom and dignity of Black folks. She could have found commercial success, but Abbey was committed to the liberation and elevation of her oppressed people; once you experience that freedom high, nothing can compare with it.

Wordplay: an interview wit’ Umar Bin Hassan of the Last Poets

By far one of the most revolutionary cultural groups to put words to music in the United States is the Last Poets. Many, including myself, trace the roots of rap music to the spoken word, lyrics and speeches of the Last Poets, Gil Scott Heron and the current political prisoner Imam Jamil Al-Amin, otherwise known as H. Rap Brown.