A unique music and dance project, featuring a collective of renowned international artists, Remembering Windrush was all set to tour in the UK from May 2020 presenting live music at key venues, alongside a programme of African-Caribbean dance and music workshops in schools and colleges, led by Artistic Director Deborah Baddoo MBE and dance and education specialist Ellen Miller (Zoots and Spangles, Jiving Lindy Hoppers, etc). All that had to change because of Covid and so we went ahead with a special online production entitled Windrush Hour 2020.
Through a series of online workshops, performances, talks and discussions, participants experienced an introduction to the music and dance styles of the Windrush era and learnt about the history and the significant contribution made by the Windrush generation to British culture and society over the past seventy plus years. Live ZOOM panels were presented monthly and a new online learning resource entitled 'The School' was launched in July 2020.
The original Remembering Windrush brought together a group of exceptional musicians, including legends of the UK jazz and Caribbean music scene, to write and perform songs and instrumentals that pay tribute to the Windrush generation and their descendants. This part of the project was so successful that State of Trust went on to win an award from PRS Foundation Open Fund for Organisations to support further composition and performance.
The musicians include original Jazz Warriors guitarist Alan Weekes (Aswad, Jazz Jamaica, etc), renowned Jamaican saxophonist Michael “Bammi” Rose (Paul Simon, Jools Holland, etc), twice Grammy nominated composer and producer Steve Marshall a.k.a. Just Stephen (Lee “Scratch” Perry, Keith Richards, etc), gifted Italian double bass player Michele Montolli (Julie Dexter, Marshall Allen/Sun Ra Arkestra, etc), rising star of the London jazz scene Saleem Raman (Jason Yarde, etc) and drum maestro Kenrick Rowe (Clifford Jarvis, P J Harvey, The Specials, etc).
Under 'lock down' we pushed forward and developed a conversation and an interactive experience that has been shared and enjoyed by thousands worldwide.
Remembering Windrush is available as a CD and online for streaming and download, remaining a unique legacy of a very memorable experience for all concerned. The music explores a variety of genres including bluebeat, ska, jazz, reggae, calypso, mento, gospel, blues and soul and the idea is to create a new interpretation of and a reflection on traditional and popular styles.
With thanks to PRS Foundation’s Open Fund for Organisations and the Church Urban Fund on behalf of the Windrush Day Grants Scheme and MHCLG for funding and support.
Photography (c)2019 Peter Japal & State of Emergency Limited.
Deborah Baddoo MBE
Michael "Bammi" Rose