Panel Discussion: Black Women in Jazz

moderated by Myra Flynn and featuring Adi Oasis, Lady Wray, and Melanie Charles

Flynn Main Stage /// FREE
Main Stage


The City of Burlington's Great Streets initiative is ongoing. Visit the city's website for information about Main Street construction and detours. Please allow extra time to get to the show.


About

This event is free and open to the public. Registration is recommended but not required. 

Homegoings host Myra Flynn leads a raw, informative, and inspiring discussion about navigating the Jazz world (and beyond) as a woman of color. Joining her on the Flynn’s Main Stage will be festival curator and performer Adi Oasis, Melanie Charles, and Lady Wray. This event is free for all and will include students from local schools in attendance.

Singer/songwriter Myra Flynn has performed at the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival several times, including a final night showcase on the Flynn Main Stage at last year’s 40th anniversary celebration. As an artist, Flynn has spent her career embracing dichotomy: half Irish and half African American, her original indie/soul songs blend arresting vocals with a dynamic lyrical delivery. She has shared stages with Ivan Neville, Mike Gordon, Gabrielle Gordon, Slick Rick, Anaïs Mitchell, and Lee “Scratch” Perry. Flynn created and hosts Homegoings for Vermont Public, a podcast that invites listeners to take part in candid and genuine conversations about race. She is also performing on the final night of the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival as part of the tribute concert for Joe Moore in City Hall Park

2024 Burlington Discover Jazz Festival curator Adi Oasis also performs on the Burlington Waterfront on Friday, June 8. With her intoxicating voice, poignant lyrics, soulful melodies, funky bass playing, and striking personal style, Oasis is an electric performer and a sought-after collaborator in modern jazz and R&B spheres. She has toured globally and shared the stage with notable artists like Anderson .Paak, Thundercat, Lenny Kravitz, Masego, Yasiin Bey, and more. Oasis has performed at a wide variety of festivals including Newport Jazz Fest, Love Supreme, Central Park SummerStage, Afropunk, and Montreux Jazz Festival.

Lady Wray performs at the Top of the Block on Church Street on Thursday, June 6. As a fifteen-year-old in Virginia, Lady Wray auditioned for Missy Elliot in her mother’s home. Missy signed her on the spot. Soon after, her breakout single, Make It Hot, was certified gold. Fast forward to now: she’s a mother, a wife, and living for herself and her family. So, naturally, this evolution has changed her music: she sings how she wants to, expertly writing lyrics for herself and others. Her latest record, Piece of Me, is a homecoming for Lady Wray, showcasing her signature take on R&B with a heavy dose of soul while infusing the dynamic boom-bap sound and energy of her earliest music. 

Melanie Charles opens for multiple Grammy winner Cécile McLorin Salvant on the Flynn Main Stage on the first night of the festival. The Brooklyn born and raised singer and flautist is know for her bold genre-bending style as well as collaborations with marquee artists such as Wynton Marsalis, SZA, Mach-Hommy, Gorillaz, and The Roots. Her latest album, Y’all Don’t (Really) Care About Black Women, is reflective of Charles’ tremendous versatility and imagination as an artist but also her deep care for community.

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