Josslyn and the Jazz Hallelujah Journey

These are my first wordsteps toward one day creating an interfaith music center which I hope to call “The Duke Ellington Center for the Study of Sacred Jazz.” The bio below includes a bit about my creative/writing life leading up to this jazz/hallelujah journey. Thank you so much for visiting/reading, hope to hear your thoughts. Huge joy and thanks to all who supported the 6 wonderful, debut Jazz on the Sacred Side shows at our beloved Jazz Bakery in Culver City. East coasters stay tuned for Jazz on the Sacred (east) Side shows in/around Philadelphia, where I’m heading next to begin a doctoral program at UPenn in Africana Studies.

Josslyn Luckett was an Executive Story Editor/Staff writer for four seasons of the WB comedy “The Steve Harvey Show.”  Her original feature screenplay “Love Song” was directed by Julie Dash and aired on MTV. In 2002 Filmmaker Magazine included her in their annual “25 New Faces of Independent Film” issue. Her plays, “Rupture Runnin’  Through Risk Runnin’ to Bliss” and “Chronicles of a Comic Mulatta: an oreo/choreopoem” have been performed at the Public Theater, the Walnut Street Theater, and The National Black Theater Festival in North Carolina. Selections from her new solo show “Loving/Imitation” were performed at REDCAT and workshopped recently in a 9 month playwriting workshop at the Center Theater Group/Mark Taper. Company of Angels in LA commissioned and produced her latest play: “Like Her Shanti Doesn’t Stink: Black Women Eye to Iyengar” in Feb 2009.  Her essays/poetry have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Ishmael Reed’s Konch Magazine, “Voices from Leimert Park Anthology” (Tsehai Press), and “What Your Mama Never Told You:  True Stories about Sex and Love” (Houghton Mifflin).  She has a BA in Ethnic Studies from UCBerkeley, an MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU, and an MDiv from Harvard Divinity School where in 2011 she won the Billings Preaching Prize.  In 2012 Josslyn was included in Harvard’s Hip Hop Archive Lecture series:  “Is it Something I Said:  Spirituality, Morality and Religion in Hip Hop” and she also had the distinct honor of participating in BLEED, where she preached a sermon on the Good News of Stevie Wonder, on day 2 of Jason and Alicia Hall Moran’s 5 day residency at the Whitney Biennial.  She is a Hedgebrook alum and proud member of the Macondo Writers Workshop in San Antonio, Texas founded by Sandra Cisneros.  She is the daughter of Roland (of Jackson, MS) and Barbara (of Cumberland, ME)–looking so smashing as the most glamorous grad students in Honolulu circa 1967–

and sister to Jason ( looking here like he’s dreaming of the trip to India we’d all be lucky enough to take decades later…

9 Responses to “Josslyn and the Jazz Hallelujah Journey”

  1. Feeling this blog! Loving this vision!

  2. Please keep me informed of all future blogs OK?

  3. Derek van Bever Says:


    I love your witness–and your plans. Grace and power to you, my classmate!


  4. Pier Carlo Talenti Says:

    Hey, Lady. An email I sent you was bounced back so I embarked on a Google search that led me to this fabulous blog. So happy to catch up with your writing, thinking and dreaming. Drop me a line with your new contact info when you have a sec.

  5. Ricardo A. Bracho Says:

    Sis, I found you! You in Philly? I’m in Chicago but make it to NYC often. Love your blog and ways-of-being-and-seeing. Cauleen Smith did the most dope Sun Ra exhibit here recently, and I thought of you.

  6. Hi, Josslyn,

    Vicente just posted your blog on FB. What a lovely blog. I’m excited to keep up with it. BTW, Rosalind Bell introduced me to Greg Porter’s music last year. What a spirit!


  7. Edith Silvas Says:

    I was wondering where my fellow jazz kat had gone. It seems appropriate that I am chillin’ to some soulful tunes right now. When you get a chance, please drop me a line. I see you are doing amazing work! Edith Silvas

  8. Hi Josslyn, wanted to make sure you knew the Makanda Project is playing in Philly at the Rotunda Monday April 22, 8 pm. Odean Pope will join us, as will Warren Smith (we’ll have 2 drummers) and Mickey Davidson (dancer). It would be so wonderful to see you there. Hope all’s well.


  9. Susan Tirrell Kirkpatrick Says:

    Hey Josslyn. Do you remember me from Woodbridge? I am so happy to have found you. It has been many years since we have talked. Write me back, I would love to catch up. Best regards!!

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