Written by | Ray Cornelius
Congratulations goes out to popular Atlanta radio personality, Jamal Ahmad (pronounced Ak-med). He received a proclamation from Atlanta City Council President, Ceasar Mitchell, Friday night during a surprise tribute and birthday celebration at the Museum Bar. Ahmad, who turns 39-years-old (again), was honored for his 21 years of service at Jazz 91.9 WCLK and for helping to elevate the city’s national profile as a mecca for R&B/Soul and Jazz vocalists and musicians.
ATL City Council Pres. Ceasar Mitchell presenting proclamation to Jamal Ahmad
Ahmad’s former Friday night radio program, The Sounds of Universal Love (S.O.U.L) played an integral role in exposing Atlanta to numerous Black “underground” soul and jazz artists from the mid 90’s til the early 2000’s. Many of the singers that were birthed out of the “neo-soul” era like Maxwell, Floetry, Van Hunt, India.Arie, Incognito, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, Omar and Bilal, were first heard on Atlanta radio through his show and the late Ken Batie’s Hot Ice.
Jamal Ahmad with singer-songwriter Algebra
His current weekly show, The Soul of Jazz, can be heard from 2p.m. until 7 p.m. on-air and online at WCLK.com. He is also a member of the music group, The Dangerfeel Newbies, whose popular R&B song, “Always with Me,” was prominently featured on the last season of BET’s Being Mary Jane.
Justin C. Gilbert performing with Ken Ford
Last night’s celebration also served as a CD release party for noted keyboardist, Justin C. Gilbert, whose album “Aligned,” came out this week. Gilbert has worked with a number of musical heavy weights including Justin Timberlake, Jay Z, Alicia Keys, Eminem, and the “Queen of Soul,” Aretha Franklin. He performed a few selections from the project which featured special guest appearances by electronic violinist, Ken Ford and vocalist, Latrese Bush.
Trumpeter Joey Sommerville
Other notables that came out to celebrate Jamal Ahmad’s birthday and anniversary were trumpeter, Joey Sommerville and vocalists, Chantae Cann, Rhonda Thomas, Algebra and many more!
Check out more photos below:
Vocalist Rhonda Thomas with DJ Rodney Love
Jamal Ahmad interviewing Justin C. Gilbert
Vocalist Latrese Bush performing with Justin C. Gilbert
Jamal’s fiancée Wendi Dillard telling him with the real purpose of the celebration
Jamal Ahmad, Joey Sommerville and ATL City Council Pres. Ceasar Mitchell
Jamal being honored by Craig Garrett and Harold Watkins (WCLK Board)
Jamal Ahmad with his mother, sisters and cousin
Jamal Ahmad and his fiancée Wendi Dillard
Jamal Ahmad with WCLK’s Mark Angel and Dangerfeel Newbie member
Jamal Ahmad with artist Kemi Bennings
Saxophonist Jon Parks performing with Joey Sommerville
WCLK’s Juanita Parks with vocalist Chantae Cann
Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com