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The Swinging Kid from Red Bank: Count Basie

022716 Count Basie

Time: 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

A multi-media presentaion on the life and music of big band leader, William "Count" Basie (1904-1984). Discover little known facts about the man, his music, his struggles and his legacy as presented by Chase Jackson, producing director of Chase Arts.

An accomplished performing artist, Chase has been an actor, director and blues vocalist for over 30 years. She has worked in theater in Norfolk, Virginia with Norfolk Players Guild, Norfolk Little Theatre and Norfolk State Players, as well as with theater companies in New Jersey. She has written and performed two memoir-based solo shows in Philadelphia’s Fringe Festival. Her most recent show, “A Minute With Miz. Mamie: Hard, But Fair”, played to standing room only. 

As a storyteller, she won audience favorite her first time out at Philadelphia’s First Person Arts’ Story Slam. That feat led to an automatic entry into their 2009 Grand Slam. Chase introduced story and poetry slams under the title “Shore Slams” to Cape May audiences while Director of Arts Programs at the Center for Community Arts. While no longer with CCA, she won their 2011 Grand Slam with “Keloid”, a story that will have you reeling with rage through your tears. 

On a lighter note, a Jazz aficionado, Chase ran the jazz club, The Priory, in Newark, NJ for 6 years and broadcast live performances every quarter on WBGO FM Radio, the top Jazz station in the United States. Some of the performers featured were Jimmy Smith, Ernestine Anderson, David “Fathead” Newman, Christian McBride and Terrance Blanchard, to name a few. She was the co-chair of the Count Basie Centennial Celebration held in Red Bank and coordinated an exhibit of Basie memorabilia, several concerts including The Count Basie Orchestra and a live broadcast of the Jon Faddis Orchestra playing all Basie. A Blues fanatic, she was the manager of Saffire-the Uppity Blues Women, national recording artists on the Alligator label. She has also performed under the name of Miz Mamie with her own band, the wRight Blues Band in Red Bank, NJ and as a member of De Gut Bucket Blues Band in Norfolk, VA. 

Chase is the co-founder of the Natchel Blues Network, a blues society (www.natchelblues.org) and founding director of AFR’AM Fest, both in Norfolk, VA. Professionally, Chase is an arts administrator with over 30 years in the field and is currently the Outreach Coordinator of Bayshore Center at Bivalve. She is in the process of writing her memoirs and an industry book on the life cycles of non-profits and embarking on a storytelling career. She also is a member of the American Association of University Women, Cape May County Chapter and Cape May Forum.

Library: Cape May Court House Library |  Storytime Room

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