The African American Cultural Center (AACC) presents its 28th annual Pine Grill Jazz Reunion on Sunday, August 6 and Sunday, August 13, 2017 from 3 to 9 Agnes M. Bain p.m. in Martin Luther King Jr. Park, located at Best Street and Fillmore Avenue.
The Pine Grill nightclub was a legendary jazz venue at the corner of Jefferson Avenue and East Ferry Street. It closed in 1973. It may be no more, but its legacy lives on with this annual concert series, sponsored by the African-American Cultural Center "It's hard to believe it has been 28 years since our first event, which was in the rain. The artist was Jimmy McGriff. He was so excited about the number of people who came out in the rain, even though he couldn't perform because it was too wet to turn on electricity, he volunteered to come back the next week," AACC Executive Director Agnes M. Bain said. When McGriff came back the following week in 1989, it rained too. He performed in the park anyway, near the bust of Martin Luther King Jr., and people sat on the concrete under umbrellas to listen. The Buffalo summertime tradition has grown tremendously since then, drawing thousands each weekend.
28th Anniversary Lineup:
Sunday, August 6 : Ray Schinnery Niki Harris Ronnie Foster Trio Akiko Tsuruga
Sunday, August 13: Carol McLaughlin Quintet Buffalo Soul Revue Brian Freeman & Friends Will Holton Intuition For more information call 884-2013.
Agnes Bain: The Amazing Woman Behind the Pine Grill Jazz Reunion
Every year for the past 28 years during the first two Sundays in August, ”the Mother of all Reunions” - the Pine Grill Jazz Reunion, takes place in Buffalos’ Martin Luther King Jr. Park. And while thousands gather there annually, many coming from across the country, the woman behind this much anticipated event, rarely, if ever, takes center stage.
Agnes M. Bain, the Executive Director of the African American Cultural Center, is probably one of the most “unsung heroines” in this community. She has produced twenty-eight Pine Grill Reunion jazz concerts with such notables as Jimmy McGriff, Bill Doggett, Billy Taylor, Horace Silver, Houston Pearson, Etta Jones, Milt Jackson, Johnny Lytle, Hank Crawford, and Gloria Lynn, just to name a few and not to exclude Buffalo's own Jaman, DoDo Green, James "Pappy" Martin, and Count Rabbit.
This year’s Pine Grill Jazz Reunion will take place August 6 & 13. The Cultural Center also houses the Paul Robeson Theatre, the second oldest component of the African American Cultural Center. Ms. Bain is credited with over eighty African American productions working with a host of local and national notables. . Under her guidance the Cultural Center continues to evolve in response to the changing landscape of real time and the future and remains a sentinel to Malcolm founding vision.
In addition to the Pine Grill Jazz Reunion and the Paul Robeson Theatre, there is the multi-disciplinary AACC Cultural Enrichment / Educational Directives After School Program and Jumpin' Jambalaya Summer Program, and the soulstirring AACC Dance and Drum Performance Company. She took the helm as Executive Director in 1978. We salute our lovey and beloved Anges M. Bain! And say “thank you for all your years and service and dedication to your community!”