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Sunday 9/16/2018 Show: Mr. SOUL! Documentary – Melissa Haizlip

The next show will air on September 16, 2018 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This broadcast puts a spotlight on the film Mr. Soul: Ellis Haizlip and the Birth of Black Power TV and features an interview with film maker and producer Melissa Haizlip.

 

In 1968 they asked him to produce the first “Black Tonight Show.” Ellis Haizlip did that, and more. SOUL! was one of the most controversial, successful, and socially significant TV shows in US history.

He was hip.
He was smart.
He was innovative, political and gay.

In his personal fight for social equality, this man ensured the Revolution would be televised.

The man was Ellis Haizlip. The Revolution was SOUL!

Ellis Haizlip was the host and executive producer of SOUL!, the first “Black Tonight Show.” In 1968, SOUL! was launched as a local, New York broadcast. In 1969 the series rolled out nationwide on PBS, on WNET Channel 13. By 1973, Haizlip had produced over 130 hour-long shows featuring a dazzling array of A-list guests: Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, James Baldwin, Stevie Wonder, Maya Angelou, Ashford and Simpson, Nikki Giovanni, Al Green and Muhammad Ali — even a sixteen-year-old Arsenio Hall doing magic tricks.

Mr. SOUL! invites us behind-the-scenes of this groundbreaking phenomenon, from its initial conception to its final broadcast, including the very public battle to keep it on the air despite a shifting political landscape.

Melissa Haizlip is a Yale University-educated award-winning filmmaker. She was Black Public Media’s (formerly National Black Programming Consortium) 2016 Artist in Residence and participated in the 2015 NALIP ARC Diverse Women In Media Residency. She is a Chaz and Roger Ebert Producing Fellow, and an alumnus of Film Independent’s Project: Involve, Firelight Media Documentary Lab, and the PGA Diversity Workshop. She produced You’re Dead to Me (2013) directed by Wu Tsang, about a grieving Chicana mother coming to terms with the loss of her transgender child on Día de los Muertos. The film won Best Short at the 2014 Imagen Awards, Reel Sisters of the Diaspora, Everybody’s Beautiful (Geneva), LesGaiCine Madrid, and Reel Rasquache Art & Film Festival (Los Angeles).

In 2009, Melissa founded Shoes In The Bed Productions, an independent film production company producing cinematic works of non-fiction with an emphasis on diverse new voices and filmmakers of color. Mr. SOUL!, the company’s first feature-length documentary, has received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, ITVS, National Black Programming Consortium, Firelight Media, Awesome Without Borders, support from IFP and Latino Public Broadcasting. She is currently in production on Mr. SOUL!

(Bio adapted from the Mr. SOUL! website.)

This program is hosted, engineered, produced, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

Mr. SOUL! is scheduled to screen at this year’s Urbanworld Film Festival on Friday, September 21 at the AMC Empire Theater 10 and the Reel Sisters of the African Diaspora Film Festival on Saturday, October 6 at Columbia University’s Miller Theater. Q&A with Melissa Haizlip at both screenings. Co-Director Sam Pollard will join the Q&A at Reel Sisters.

Web Extras:

PBS’s archive page for SOUL! (the TV show, not the current documentary film) with some of the original 1970s episodes streaming is here.

Watch the trailer for Mr. SOUL!

Hank Williams is assistant producer for Suga’ in My Bowl and produces the weekly “On the Bandstand” segment as well as running the show’s website and blog, where he has reviewed several jazz festivals. His writing has also appeared in Left Turn magazine and American Music Review. He teaches at Lehman College in the City University of New York system.

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Sunday 7/8/2018 Show: Milford Graves Film

Photo: Milford Graves | © Joyce Jones/ Suga Bowl Photography. Some Rights Reserved. Creative Commons CC-NC-BY-ND. Used with Permission.

The next show will air on Sunday, July 8, 2018 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This broadcast features a conversation with Jake Meginsky, director of Milford Graves: Full Mantis. We will also revisit our 10/2/16 broadcast of an interview with percussionist/drummer, acupuncturist, herbalist, gardener, builder, scientist, inventor and martial arts master Milford Graves.

Milford Graves (born August 20, 1941 in Queens, New York) is an American jazz drummer and percussionist, most noteworthy for his early avant-garde contributions in the early 1960s with Paul Bley and the New York Art Quartet alongside John Tchicai, Roswell Rudd, and Reggie Workman. He is considered to be a free jazz pioneer, liberating the percussion from its timekeeping role. In fact, many of his music contemporaries, musician inspirees, and fans world-wide would argue that Graves is perhaps the most influential known musician in the development and continuing evolution of free-jazz/avant-garde music, to date. Milford Graves taught at Bennington College, in Bennington, Vermont, being a tenured professor from 1973 to 2011; in 2011, he is awarded Emeritus status.

Initially playing timbales as a kid growing up in Queens, Graves has worked as a sideman and session musician with a variety of jazz musicians throughout his career, including Pharoah Sanders, Rashied Ali, Albert Ayler, Don Pullen, Kenny Clarke, Don Moye, Andrew Cyrille, Philly Joe Jones, Eddie Gómez, and John Zorn. He has invested his time in research within the field of healing through music.

In 2013, Milford Graves along with Drs. Carlo Tremolada and Carlo Ventura received a patent for an invention that relates to a process of preparing a non-expanded tissue derivative, that is not subjected to cell proliferation in vitro, which has a vascular-stromal fraction enriched in stem and multipotent elements, such as pericytes and/or mesenchymal stem cells, or for preparing non-embryonic stem cells obtained from a tissue sample or from such tissue derivative, wherein the tissue derivative or such cells are subjected to vibrations derived from a heart sound to control the degree of differentiation or possible differentiation of the stem and multipotent elements into several other types of cells and optimize their potency. The invention relates also to a device for carrying out the process, to stem cells obtainable by the process as well as a drug for the regeneration of an animal tissue.

(Bio adapted from Wikipedia)

This program is hosted, engineered, produced, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

Full Mantis: Milford Graves starts a run at Metrograph in Manhattan on Monday, July 13. Former Suga’ guest William Hooker will join Graves and Meginsky for a Q&A on the opening night. Graves and Meginsky will be present for the Q&A on June 14.

Web Extras:

Watch The trailer for Full Mantis: Milford Graves.

Watch Graves and saxophonist Kidd Jordan in this live clip from the 2013 Vision Festival.

Watch Graves and bassist William Parker in this 2010 live clip.

Hank Williams is assistant producer for Suga’ in My Bowl and produces the weekly “On the Bandstand” segment as well as running the show’s website and blog, where he has reviewed several jazz festivals. His writing has also appeared in Left Turn magazine and American Music Review. He teaches at Lehman College in the City University of New York system.

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