Brooklyn corner renamed Max Roach Way in honor of iconic jazz drummer, civil rights activist

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, June 19, 2024
Corner renamed Max Roach Way in honor of iconic jazz drummer
Michelle Charlesworth reports on the Brooklyn corner named in honor of Max Roach.

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT, Brooklyn (WABC) -- There was a special honor Wednesday in Brooklyn for an iconic jazz drummer and Civil Rights activist.

The corner of Greene and Marcy avenues in Bedford-Stuyvesant will be named "Max Roach Way."

Born in North Carolina but raised in Brooklyn, Roach was recognized as the greatest jazz drummer of all time by his peers before he turned 30.

He died in 2007.

Roach was the first jazz musician ever honored with a MacArthur fellowship, or "Genius Grant."

"Max was basically a physician because music can heal, and there's so much hate out there that can divide us, he had the power to reconnect us," said New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

Roach's family and friends were at the ceremony.

"As we gather today, what do we do? First of all, we do it the Max Roach way, and we remember not only what sustained these ancestors," said Janus Adams, American journalist and writer. "We are the promises they made to themselves. We are their dreams. Thank you, Max."

Roach's family is planning a series of events in honor of what would have been his100th birthday in August as the music great is remembered by the next generation, his neighborhood and city.

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