Martin Luther McCoy: 50th Anniversary of What's Going On
A live photo of singer-songwriter Martin Luther McCoy
50th Anniversary Celebration

Martin Luther McCoy

Plays Marvin Gaye's What's Going On

OCT 14-17 | Bay Area Sounds

Oct 17, 2021
Miner Auditorium

PLEASE NOTE:
This page is an archive of a past production


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Original show description below.

Bay Area vocalist and former SFJAZZ Collective member Martin Luther McCoy honors the legacy of soul singing legend Marvin Gaye for the 50th anniversary of his landmark 1971 album What’s Going On.

Sparked by acts of police brutality that Four Tops member Renaldo Benson witnessed in May 1969 during the “Bloody Thursday” riot at Berkeley’s People’s Park, the classic title song composed by Al Cleveland was offered to Gaye for inclusion on his next album. Partially rewriting the song, Gaye used it as part of a now-iconic song cycle steeped in social consciousness about Vietnam, environmental issues, and race relations in America.

 

Rising to international attention for his work with The Roots, Cody ChesnuTT, Dave Matthews, Jill Scott, DJ Jazzy Jeff and Zion I, McCoy is perhaps best known for his on-screen role as the Jimi Hendrix inspired character “Jo-Jo” in director Julie Taymor’s Oscar-nominated 2007 Beatles tribute film Across the Universe. He joined the SFJAZZ Collective for the 2019 Season devoted to the 50th anniversaries of Miles Davis’ In a Silent Way and Sly Stone’s Stand!, and this Sunday morning event is a perfect continuation of this this theme, celebrating the pivotal musical statements that defined the turbulent times that inspired their creation.

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McCoy joined the SFJAZZ Collective for the 2019 Season devoted to the 50th anniversaries of Miles Davis’ In a Silent Way and Sly Stone’s Stand!, and this Sunday morning event is a perfect continuation of this this theme, celebrating the pivotal musical statements that defined the turbulent times that inspired their creation.

Luther invites listeners to 'enjoy this funky ride.' It's a trip worth taking, fueled by old-school, power-to-the-peeps politics and more soul than a Sunday revival meeting.

San Francisco Chronicle

Luther invites listeners to 'enjoy this funky ride.' It's a trip worth taking, fueled by old-school, power-to-the-peeps politics and more soul than a Sunday revival meeting.

San Francisco Chronicle

Personnel

Martin Luther McCoy vocals & guitar
Cam Perridge guitar
Uriah Duffy bass
Joel Griffen drums
Amelie Anna percussion
Warren Wolf piano
Howard Wiley saxophone
Tongo Eisen Martin poetry & spoken word

Luther invites listeners to 'enjoy this funky ride.' It's a trip worth taking, fueled by old-school, power-to-the-peeps politics and more soul than a Sunday revival meeting.

San Francisco Chronicle

Personnel

Martin Luther McCoy vocals & guitar
Cam Perridge guitar
Uriah Duffy bass
Joel Griffen drums
Amelie Anna percussion
Warren Wolf piano
Howard Wiley saxophone
Tongo Eisen Martin poetry & spoken word

Luther invites listeners to 'enjoy this funky ride.' It's a trip worth taking, fueled by old-school, power-to-the-peeps politics and more soul than a Sunday revival meeting.

San Francisco Chronicle

Watch & Listen

Martin Luther McCoy

Now

Martin Luther McCoy

Amazing

Martin Luther McCoy

Now

Martin Luther McCoy

Amazing

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