Black History Month’s origins in America are in what was called “Negro History Week,” a special week’s designation recognizing the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.

In the United States, February officially became Black History Month in 1976. In December of 1995, the House of Commons in Canada officially recognized February as Black History Month.

JAZZ.FM91 reached out to the world’s musical artists of African heritage to get their impressions, sentiments and feelings about Black History Month — its significance, importance and resonance.

Listen to Black History is the Sound of Jazz, a special edition of our Sound of Jazz program airing this month. The program features expressions and music from artists such as Dee Dee Bridgewater, Joe Sealy, Marcus Roberts, Kellylee Evans, Terri Lyne Carrington, and so many more.

The next Sound of Jazz special will air Sunday, Feb. 18, at 4 p.m. ET. You can listen to the first special below.

Black History is the Sound of Jazz is presented by JAZZ.FM91, hosted by John Devenish, and dedicated to the memory and legacy of Dr. Michael Arthurs.