NORTH AUGUSTA, SC (WJBF) – A local jazz festival gears up to bring the CSRA some music history during Masters Week. 

Inside the Jamburg Jazz Festival at the BEC Plex in North Augusta, you’ll find a Black History exhibit with rich information and a discovery that started right here in the CSRA.

“Because I have a very close connection to the jazz history. My grandfather was a childhood friend of Dizzy Gillespie. They grew up throughout South Carolina and so he was a local jazz legend in Charlton and his brother discovered Ella Fitzgerald,” Wayne O’Bryant told NewsChannel 6.

Author and historian Wayne O’Bryant said he started the festival to give people a better outlook on jazz music and how it was created by African Americans in the south and brought to North Augusta’s riverfront entertainment area, The Palmetto Park and Pond and beyond.

He said, “And there was a venue maybe about a quarter mile from where we are today that hosted jazz acts from around the world, you know the biggest jazz acts in the world, and so we wanted to put the music and the history together, so we created Jamburg.”

Along with a jazz music tour, another aspect of Jamburg is a boutique giving people the opportunity to experience history and fashion sewn into styles.

Other vendors are also part of the experience too.

O’Bryant said his family put a lot of effort into the exhibit to educate the community, even displaying his late mothers jazz quilts she made representing jazz musicians.  

He also said he wants people to bring their family history to the event

“What we want to do is we want people to bring their stories. If you have people in your family history that were involved in jazz music we want y’all to bring that here and so every year we’ll build on this and we want to celebrate the locals that came from the area,” he explained.

Lumus Vick, who is the founder of the center, said he hopes people leave the festival knowing the importance of Black History in jazz music.

“Little did we know four years ago when my partner Ken and I opened the BEC Plex that we would, I guess in a sense, duplicate something some Black men 75, 80 years ago has already done,” said Vick.