THE PHANTOM BLUES BAND
As a veteran musician, it's my job to make sure that what it is I do or know about is being passed along to a younger generation.
Born Henry Saint Clair Fredericks, the man who would later become known to the world as Taj Mahal is a seasoned master and purveyor of the blues in all its forms, including R&B, soul, rock & roll, jazz, zydeco, West African, Caribbean-Taj has played it all. The oldest of nine children, Taj Mahal grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts, in a home filled with music. His mother was a gospel-singing school teacher, and his father a West Indian composer/arranger and avid jazz fan.
As an adolescent, Taj explored the roots of American blues and other forms of music filtered through the black experience in America. He idolized such pioneers as Jimmy Reed, Howlin' Wolf, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Sleepy John Estes, Sonny Terry, and other masters. After earning his degree in animal husbandry from the University of Massachesetts in 1964, he emerged professionally the following year as cofounder, with guitarist Ry Cooder, of The Rising Sons.
In a career spanning over three decades, Taj has toured, recorded, and/or performed with other great artists, including Eric Clapton, Bonnie Raitt, B.B. King, Miles Davis, Jim Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Bob Marley, the Neville Brothers, and the Rolling Stones. His new album, Senior Blues (1997), brings to 36 the number of albums Taj Mahal has recorded.
Taj has acted in films and composed motion picture scores; he wrote the Grammy nominated score for the Broadway production Mule Bone (1991), based on a play by Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston.
You are cordially invited to attend this admission-free concert, sponsored by the CMC Dean of Students Office and the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum. The dinner at the Athenaeum preceding the concert is open to CMC persons only. The concert at Garrison Theater is open to members of the 5-College community. A 5-College ID will be required to attend the concert.
The dinner begins with a reception at 5:30 p.m. In order to reserve a place at the dinner, please fill out the reservation form below and bring it to the Athenaeum office by Friday, September 5. Seats in the theater will be reserved for dinner attendees.