Stream free concert “Dedication” from Eric Essix Group, Tracy Hamlin on Feb. 25

“Dedication,” presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center, is a Black History Month tribute to icons who made their mark in the cause of civil rights, music, sports and American culture.

Feb.2Celebrate Black History Month with “Dedication,” a free, live-streamed concert starring Eric Essix Group and Tracy Hamlin on Thursday, Feb. 25.

“Dedication” is presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center. It is a tribute to Black history icons who have made their mark in the cause of civil rights, music, sports and American culture. They include Aretha Franklin, Fred Shuttlesworth, Harriet Tubman, Jesse Owens, Marvin Gaye, Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks.

The concert is set for 7 p.m. CT. It is free and open to the public; reserve your place online.

Virtual Meet the Artist performances of “Dedication” have also been provided to schools throughout the month of February. “Dedication” is made possible by the Alabama State Council on the Arts, Hugh Kaul Foundation, Ebsco Industries and Jefferson County Community Service Fund.

Over a period of more than 30 years and 25 full-length album releases, Eric Essix has maintained a steady flow of new music that continues to push the boundaries of contemporary jazz throughout his career. His latest effort, “Songs From The Deep,” revisits the artist’s favorite theme, his Birmingham, Alabama, Southern roots, and features nine compositions, all written, arranged and produced by Essix. It is a project that reveals the soul of the man and his music as he continues to reconcile love for his homeland, its culture and its people with its history. His group features Sean Michael Ray, bass; West Byrd, keyboardist; PJ Spraggins, drums; and Kelley O’Neal, saxophone.

Featured vocalist Tracy Hamlin developed classical proficiency and dexterity learning to sing in French, German and Italian at the Baltimore School of the Arts and the prestigious Peabody Preparatory School of Music. Hamlin has performed alongside music legends including Carlos Santana, Marcus Miller, Jonathan Butler, Esperanza Spalding and Chaka Khan, to name a few. She toured internationally as lead background vocalist for “Disco Queen” Gloria Gaynor — and was credited as vocal arranger on Gaynor’s last project — and also toured internationally as lead vocalist with jazz recording group Pieces of a Dream.