Plus Newark Boys Choir, the Album of the Week (Jimmy Cliff) and Drew Toonz on the new Steel Pier.
Henrietta Shelton to Receive American Conference on Diversity Award
The Atlantic County Chapter of the American Conference on Diversity will honor Atlantic City’s Henrietta Shelton at its Annual Humanitarian Awards Dinner at the Atlantic City Country Club in Northfield on Thursday, Dec. 1. Also being honored this year are the Reliance Medical Group and the Women’s Center in Linwood.
Shelton, president of the Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation, Inc., is being honored for her volunteer work as the head of the CBBHF and for promoting black history “by keeping alive the history of the socially-restricted black beach in Atlantic City from which it draws its name.” Shelton is also being honored for her commitment to the arts. The CBBHF has presented a free summer jazz concert series on the Atlantic City Boardwalk for a decade, a winter jazz concert series at the Chelsea for two years (and is expected to kick off its third year in 2012), created the Chicken Bone Beach Youth Ensemble, and new this summer, launched the Atlantic City Youth Jazz Camp at the Carnegie Library Center of Stockton College in Atlantic City.
“The principles that this organization stands for are the same principles that the Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation stands for,” she says, adding that she is thrilled to be honored by such a prestigious group.
This isn’t the first time Shelton’s been applauded for her community efforts. In 2006, she was presented with the Spirit of Hospitality award, sponsored by the Atlantic City Convention and Visitors Authority at the annual Atlantic City Host Awards Gala. She has also won numerous awards for her work at the FAA Tech Center, where she has been a technical editor for 36 years.
Shelton has spent 15 years dedicating her free time (and often her own funds) to present live jazz in the area. She says her long-time goal is to help make an Atlantic City Jazz Hall of Fame a reality. “One thing about music and good music is that it draws a diverse group of people together to enjoy both the music and themselves.” Aside from providing free concerts, Shelton adds: “Our goal has always been to have a hall of fame in Atlantic City — a history of jazz music. It can help foster more interaction between jazz teachers and students and bring a new attraction to the city. We could have shows, classes, a wax museum, artifacts, you name it. I have a business plan all ready!”
Shelton’s latest award is tightly knit with her own beliefs and her organization’s mission. “We’re honored,” she says. “That was the goal of the concerts, to bring quality people together and to focus on the good parts of Atlantic City and its rich history. It’s been about fostering family unity, community unity and camaraderie, and good human spirit — things the world needs more than ever these days.”
— Jeff Schwachter
Newark Boys Choir Plays A.C.
New Jersey’s Newark Boy’s Choir performs 6pm Wednesday, Dec. 7, at St. Nicholas of Tolentine Church in Atlantic City. The concert benefits the church food bank, which serves about 35,000 people annually. The choir, known as Newark’s “musical ambassadors,” has a diverse repertoire from classical to jazz. They have performed throughout the world and at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York. While in town, the choir will also stage a special concert for city students. The Wednesday public concert also honors the late Lillian Levy, the only Atlantic County resident to chair the state’s Council of the Arts. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the church gift shop. Call 344-1040. — Mike Pritchard
‘Sacred Fire EP’ (Collective Sounds)
On Jimmy Cliff’s latest offering, the five-song EP Sacred Fire (a bonus track is available on the 12” vinyl version), the reggae pioneer teams up with Rancid’s Tim Armstrong for a sunny set of vintage reggae music. With the 40th anniversary of Cliff’s groundbreaking film and album The Harder They Come coming next year, the highly influential Jamaican star back-peddles a bit with that pivotal work in mind. The first track, for example, is a cool cover of The Clash’s gritty “Guns of Brixton,” in which The Harder They Come is referenced. Bob Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” is also included in the set. Featuring all of Dylan’s original verses and lyrics — with the minor exception of changing “blue-eyed son” to “brown-eyed son” — Cliff’s version sounds as relevant today as Dylan’s version did in 1963. Cliff’s only new song here is the catchy “Ship Is Sailing,” which on the 63-year-old’s first studio release since 2004, is as sweet as reggae gets. —Jeff Schwachter
Most students attending PAS have come from New Jersey Avenue School, one of the oldest in the city, which needed far too many repairs and had become a dark and dismal place for children and teachers alike.
Plus Drew Toonz, the Atlantic City Antiques Show and (New!) Singles of the Week
Here is a list of what we think are the cream of the crop for 2011 — the Top 14 Drew Toonz comics of the year.
"I hope my daughter will be introduced to a different type of music. She usually plays rock and R&B. I've always tried to keep my daughters busy with something constructive during the summer, no sitting around on your butt watching TV for months."
It’s been 10 years since Henrietta Shelton first organized the Chicken Bone Beach free concert series on the Atlantic City Boardwalk. And despite a decade of bringing great jazz groups to the resort, the biggest testament to the series’ success may come on Thursday, Aug. 27, when New York’s Finest Jazz Ensemble (made up of N.Y.P.D officers, thus New York’s finest) takes the stage.
Since 2000, Atlantic City native Henrietta Wallace Shelton has been keeping the spirit of Chicken Bone Beach alive with annual free jazz series, workshops and special concerts. The term "Chicken Bone...
Before Kicking off the Jazz on the Beach concert series in 2000, Henrietta Shelton hadn't realized that it would put her American Express card $14,000 in debt. But the president and founder of the Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation, Inc., wasn't going to let a little thing like money stop her from nurturing the series into one of the city's most popular summer events. "It's just a project I believe in," says Shelton, a 31-year employee at the William J. Hughes Technical Center. The long-time A.C. resident is currently making final arrangements for this summer's concert series, which is scheduled to begin July 6 and run through Aug. 24 at Kennedy Plaza. Initially, the idea for the free weekly concert series, which has presented well known jazz musicians (Donald Byrd, Gloria Lynne, Greg Osby) on the Boardwalk during the months of July and August for the past several years, came to Shelton after presenting a single concert on the beach at Missouri Avenue featuring famed jazz vibraphonist Roy Ayers in August 2000. "We had over 2,000 people on the beach," remembers Shelton, who held the concert in memory of the spirit of all those summers she experienced growing up in A.C. during...
NOW IN ITS FIFTH YEAR, this summer's Chicken Bone Beach Jazz Concert Series promises to be the most popular yet. It's also a labor of love for founder Henrietta Shelton, who nurtured the series from a modest beginning and through a relatively short time has gotten it to where it now attracts world-class artists. The concerts get their name from a stretch of beach in Atlantic City at Missouri Avenue where blacks were essentially segregated from other beach goers during the first half of the last century. Chicken Bone Beach (CBB) became a derogatory term for the strand, where bones were often found to have been discarded by bathers who brought picnic lunches. The name, though, lost some of its heat as the years passed. "Later, when the locals only knew that name, we just took it -- just like anything else that blacks do -- we take it and turn it around," explains Shelton. "And that's what we did, we took it and turned it around." It's been turned around to the point where the area's been officially declared an historical area of the city. The CCB concerts were created as more than just entertainment events. As the mission statement...
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