Bill Cosby Wins Marian Anderson Award - Requests His Favorite Radio Host to Emcee Jazz Performances at April 6th Ceremony
BP Reflects on the Experience...
"It was an honor to be a part of the tribute to Bill Cosby last month. He never forgets his Philadelphia roots, or his old Philly friends. Several years ago at one of the Tony Williams Jazz Fesivals - at which Cosby is a frequent guest - and at which I serve as emcee - Cos stood beside me on stage and told the audience that they were lucky to have me as a jazz host on WRTI because I played such great music - and that he was a fan. I was floored! I had no idea that Bill Cosby knew who I was."--BP
"Cosby requested that the jazz selection "Blue 'n Boogie" close the Marian Anderson Award program April 6th. He asked old friend and saxophonist Tony Williams to choose the musicians, and they were: bassist Lee Smith, pianist Don Wilson, drummer Granville "Mickey" Roker, and saxophonist Tommy Grice.
Cosby also came up with two saxophonists from the New York City area in Fred Staten and Max Lucas, who joined in the finale. They more than held their own with the young-'uns, although they are 95 and 99 year old, respectively. When I introduced them and gave their ages, the audience cheered them on. At tune's end, the audience gave the octet a thunderous standing ovation."--BP