“Jazz and Poetry” Marks Finale of Mountains to the ” Sea Jazz Series”

Quentin Baxter and Marcus Amaker

Concluding its Mountains to the Sea Jazz Series, the Tryon Fine Arts Center presents an exquisite blend of jazz melodies and poetic verses on Sunday, May 19, at 4 p.m. This captivating fusion will showcase the talents of two esteemed artists from the Lowcountry – Quentin Baxter and Marcus Amaker.

Quentin Baxter, a recipient of the prestigious GRAMMY award, is not only a virtuoso percussionist but also a celebrated composer and educator deeply rooted in Charleston, S.C.’s jazz scene. His dedication to nurturing local talent earned him recognition as a 2024 Charleston Jazz Hero by the Jazz Journalists Association. Baxter’s contributions extend beyond performances; he has been shaping young minds as a Jazz Percussion instructor at the College of Charleston for over two decades. Additionally, he plays a pivotal role as the musical director of the Charleston Jazz Initiative, delving into the rich heritage of African-American musicians in the Carolinas. Baxter’s commitment to his craft is further exemplified by his involvement as a founding board member of the Jazz Artists of Charleston and as a board member of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra.

Together with Marcus Amaker, another luminary of the Lowcountry, this event promises an unforgettable journey through the realms of jazz and poetry, uniting two art forms in a harmonious celebration of creativity and expression.

Teaming up with Quentin Baxter for this enchanting evening is the versatile poet and musician, Marcus Amaker. Recently honored as the first Poet Laureate of Charleston and inducted into the esteemed South Carolina Literary Hall of Fame, Amaker’s influence spans across various artistic realms. Notably, he ventured into opera as a librettist, debuting his first opera, “The Weight of Light,” to critical acclaim at the Chicago Opera Theater earlier this year. With a prolific literary career boasting 10 published books and a musical repertoire featuring 43 electronic albums, Amaker’s collaboration with Baxter extends to three joint albums, adding another layer of depth to their artistic partnership.

Described as a captivating fusion of poetic verse and rhythmic percussion, the Jazz and Poetry performance promises an unparalleled sensory experience. Attendees can expect an electrifying showcase that intertwines the soul-stirring words of Amaker with the dynamic beats of Baxter, creating a synergy that resonates both physically and emotionally. Nancy Holmes, who experienced their magic firsthand at a previous performance in 2021, aptly captures the essence of their collaboration as a transformative journey for the audience.