Founder’s Day Concert
Morehouse College will host Atlanta’s “King of Strings” Ken Ford and the electrifying R&B artist Keeyen Martin in a special Founder’s Day Concert on Friday, Feb. 15, from 7:30 p.m. -10:30 p.m. at Ray Charles Performing Arts Center - Emma and Joe Adams Concert Hall.
Tickets range from $20 for general admission to $75 for VIP seating.
To purchase tickets, visit eventbrite.com.
Ford, a respected jazz recording artist, will be the headliner for the Founder’s Day Concert. He has made a national career in music as a virtuoso of the electric violin. He honed his soulful string playing in metro Atlanta where he grew up as a young musician. At age nine, he began to study the violin and play the classics. Ford is a founding member of the DeKalb Youth Pop Orchestra. He later joined the African American Philharmonic Orchestra where he played with Grammy Award-winning artist Barry White and was promoted to the title of Concert Master.
But it was Ford’s desire to play popular songs heard on the radio that would eventually propel his career as a solo artist. His string renditions of R&B and jazz hits pushed him to expand his repertoire and develop sophisticated techniques that would attract new audiences to violin concerts. Ford has shared billing with a host of award-winning artists including Bruno Mars, Chaka Khan, Will Downing, Wyclef Jean, CeeLo Green, and Frankie Beverly.
“I grew up in a family that was into music,” Ford said. “My dad was a deejay. One day I was going through the records, and I came across this guy with no shirt on and an Afro. He was holding a violin. It was Noel Pointer. I was like, ‘Oh, my God! Wow!’ I put on the record. I knew right at that moment that I wanted to do that. It was really hearing someone else doing something different with the violin that excited me. Music is a part of me. It’s my bread and butter because I love it.”
Ken Ford shares his passion for music with K-12 students across the nation through the Ken Ford Foundation.
Morehouse alumnus, Keeyen Martin, a musical powerhouse and native of North Carolina, will open the Founder’s Day Concert. A 2009 Michael Jackson Scholarship recipient, Martin used his years at Morehouse to develop a foundation that helped to catapult his career. Since graduating in 2013, he has shared the stage with industry giants, including Common, Steve Wonder, Lalah Hathaway, the late Aretha Franklin, Peabo Bryson, Michelle Williams, and Bebe & Cece Winans, among others.
His debut single “Girl I’m on the Way” premiered on the iTunes Top 100 Chart last year. He has since added new original music to his catalog and is working on a new EP that will be released in the first quarter of this year.