Contemporary jazz artist Najee to headline 25th annual Charlie Christian International Festival in June 2010

Black Liberated Arts Center (BLAC) Inc. announced today that contemporary jazz artist Najee will headline the 25th annual Charlie Christian International Jazz Festival at 8 p.m. on Saturday, June 5, 2010, at Regatta Park in Oklahoma City, OK.
With three platinum and five gold albums, Najee (born Jerome Najee Rasheed) is one of the pioneers of what is commonly known as contemporary jazz.  A native of Queens, New York, Najee began his career playing clarinet and later saxophone and flute.  While in high school, he began studying under the direction of Jimmy Heath, Frank Foster, and Billy Taylor at Jazzmobile in Harlem.  Najee also studied flute with Harold Jones at the Manhattan School of Music. 
Najee, along with his brother Fareed, attended the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston with a concentrated study in performance and composition. The brothers moved back to New York and were asked to tour with the R&B songstress Chaka Khan. 
After the release of his debut album “Najee’s Theme” in 1986, Najee embarked on a U.S. tour with Freddie Jackson.  “Najee’s Theme” went platinum and was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1987.  Najee’s sophomore album “Day by Day” also went platinum.  These albums were followed by “Tokyo Blue” and “Just an Illusion.”  In 1994, Najee recorded “Share My World.” 
Najee’s 1995 recording on EMI records was dedicated to one of his favorite artists and good friend, Stevie Wonder.  It was titled “Najee Plays Songs from the Key of Life: A Tribute to Stevie Wonder.” 
In 1998, Najee produced “Morning Tenderness.”  He is the recipient of many awards. Over the years, Najee has worked with may great artists such as Quincy Jones, Patti LaBelle, George Duke, Lionel Richie and Prince. 
Tickets are $20 in advance, $30 at the gate. Tickets may be purchased online at ProTix or at any Buy for Less store.  For more information, call (405) 524-3800 or go to www.charliechristianfestival.com.




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