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A Special Fundraiser for the Jenkins Institute:
Jazz for Jenkins with Tuffus Zimbabwe, Mayor John Tecklenburg, and Quentin Baxter
Thursday, June 7th ~ 7:00 PM
Join Saturday Night Live pianist Tuffus Zimbabwe, Mayor John Tecklenburg, and Quentin Baxter for an evening rich in the jazz roots of the Lowcountry. Zimbabwe, the great-grandson of the Rev. Daniel Joseph Jenkins, founder of Jenkins Orphanage, and the world famous Jenkins Orphanage Band will play and tell stories with the Mayor and Mr. Baxter as a special benefit for Jenkins Institute for Children. Tickets are $40 to support this swingin’ evening.
To purchase tickets, call 843-723-9912 or click here
Tuffus Zimbabwe is a pianist and composer from the Roxbury area of Boston. He comes from a rich background of artists and musicians, most notably the musical genius Edmund Jenkins, a brilliant composer and performer in the genres of Jazz and Classical music from the early 1900s. He was internationally renowned and is remembered for his significant contributions to the development of jazz in the United States, via Charleston, South Carolina. Tuffus, a versatile composer and master musician in his own right, started piano lessons at the early age of five. His father, a teacher, and his mother, a visual artist, both armed with knowledge of their rich musical heritage, made it a point to provide Tuffus with substantial musical exposure. He began by studying classical piano, which he did for roughly two decades. At the age of 12 he explored gospel music at a local Roxbury church where he started playing piano with the men’s choir.
In his early teens, Tuffus joined Berklee College of Music’s City Music Program, where
he began his formal training in jazz. Here is where his skills and talents as a musician
matured. The program offered him a laboratory to develop his compositions and a forum
to perform with his peers. At 18, Tuffus received the prestigious Walter Beasley Award,
won the song writing competition at Berklee’s Five Week Summer Program, and was
subsequently awarded the full-tuition “City Music Continuing Scholarship” to study in
Berklee’s undergraduate program (class of ‘05). Here he dual-majored in Music
Business and Film Scoring while engaging in extensive studies in composition and
Tuffus’ composition skills landed him a spot on Liz Walker’s CBS-TV morning show
where he performed his original “African Breeze” with the Tuffus Zimbabwe Group. One
of his original compositions was already being used weekly as the theme for this show.
Tuffus continued his education, earning his Master of Music degree in Jazz Studies from
New York University.
Tuffus currently works as a keyboardist in the Saturday Night Live Band on NBC. He
also works in a number of bands such as Ron Ried’s “Sun Steel” band and Jovol Bell’s
Charleston’s Quentin Baxter is a drummer/composer/educator/producer. A graduate of
the College of Charleston (Bachelor of Arts – Music Theory & Composition), Baxter
cultivated his musical talents under the wings of regional legends/mentors Robert
Ephraim, Oscar Rivers, Jr, Lonnie Hamilton III, George Kenney, Dr. David Maves, Teddy
Adams, and Delbert Felix.
Currently touring worldwide with award-winning vocalist and composer René Marie and
Grammy-nominated vocalist Freddy Cole, Baxter regularly performs in many prestigious
venues and festivals. He’s performed at The Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), Jazz
at Lincoln Center (New York), Joy of Jazz Festival (South Africa), Toulouse Jazz
Festival (France), Umbria Jazz Festival and Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi (Italy), and,
of course, Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston.