Wadada Leo Smith—the jazz trumpeter, multi-instrumentalist, composer, and improviser—has been named one of United States Artists’ 2021 USA Fellows. He’s joined by other musicians named fellows by the foundation: Tomeka Reid, Martha Gonzalez, Edward “Kidd” Jordan, and Mazz Swift. Each fellow will receive a $50,000 cash award to support their ongoing artistic endeavors.
“We are grateful for every artist whose artmaking, music, writing, and more is helping us to navigate and cope through this harrowing time in our country,” said United States Artists President & CEO Deana Haggag. “The 2021 USA Fellows are a testament to the power of art in shaping the world around us and navigating its complexities. Artists do so much for our communities, and we are grateful to be able to support these 60 incredible practitioners and welcome them into the United States Artists fellowship.”
In 2019, Smith released Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs. His 2016 collaboration with Vijay Iyer, A Cosmic Rhythm With Each Stroke, was named Best New Music. Among Reid’s works is the 2018 Dave Rempis and Joshua Abrams collaboration Ithra.