June Celebrates African-American Music Appreciation Month
June is the month that America celebrates African-American music of the past and present and is designated as Black Music Month. The celebration started back in 1979 when music industry icons Kenny Gamble, Ed Wright, and Dyana Williams developed the idea to set a month dedicated to celebrating the importance and impact of black music on our culture. Soon after, on June 7, 1979, President Jimmy Carter officially designated June as Black Music Month.
President Barack Obama instituted the new title of African-American Music Appreciation Month in 2009 and declared: "The music of our Nation has always spoken to the condition of our people and reflected the diversity of our Union. African-American musicians, composers, singers, and songwriters have made enormous contributions to our culture by capturing the hardships and aspirations of a community and reminding us of our shared values."
"The African-American music tradition also reflects creativity and individualism. Blues, jazz, soul, and rock and roll synthesize various musical traditions to create altogether new sounds. Their novel chord progressions, improvisation, and mood showcase individual musicians while also creating a cohesive musical unit. In addition, African-American composers have thrived in traditional genres such as musical theater, opera, classical symphony, and choral music, providing their unique imprint and creatively growing these forms of music. All of these contributions are treasured across America and the world," states White House press statement.
The Bellamy Group does a stellar job of recognizing the invaluable musical influences of African-Americans. Gospel's Thomas A. Dorsey, Rev. James Cleveland, Mahalia Jackson, Albertina Walker, Andrae' Crouch, Danniebelle Hall and many others have paved the way for today's Gospel Music artists. We are honored to play a role in the promotion and continued growth of African-American music and applaud the talent and dedication of our family of artists past and present.