Original Air Date: 11/09/23 Featured Music: I Know Why – George Morrison’s Jazz Orchestra
Simone D. Ross joined The Morning Set to share stories of her Great Grandfather George Morrison Sr. and talk with us about the impact his legacy had on her life and on the community.
On October 17th, 2023, The Colorado Music Hall of Fame inducted George Morrison Sr., nicknamed Denver’s ‘Godfather of Jazz.’ The induction ceremony was at Morrison’s namesake park at 1600 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, across from Cole Middle School. Hall of Fame board member and KUVO host Carlos Lando emceed the event and it was there that he met Simone D. Ross, George Morrison Sr.’s great granddaughter. Simone D. Ross is the CEO of The Colorado Women’s Chamber Foundation.
We were surprised to find that our block here at the Buell Public Media Center shared a tie with a special part of George Morrison Sr.’s life. Records at the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library show that he met his future wife Miss Willa May of Denver at a dance at the old East Denver Turner Hall – located right here at 21st and Arapahoe Streets. George Morrison Sr. and Miss Willa May married in Denver on the 28th of August 1911. While the old Turner Hall burned down, the foundation remains, bordering Soneff’s Auto Repair in the 2100 block of Arapahoe Street.
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Photos credit: Courtesy of The Colorado Music Hall of Fame.