influences on the
jazz on U Street.
From left: Omrao
On a recent Friday evening, my husband and I strolled the length of D.C.’s U Street Corridor, a colorful stretch of high-rises, quaint furni- ture stores and restaurants. We passed a steady stream of mostly young and dapper folks, who slipped into galler- ies and disappeared into dark
entryways. Along this revitalized, eight-block strip in
the northwest part of town, there is a palpable vibe in
the air. As doors swung open, the sound of string and
wind instruments wafted out as often as the peppery
aroma of Ethiopian spices.
And then I saw it, glowing like a beacon a block
away: the large, yellow saxophone jutting from the
side of an old brick building. Below it, an awning
spanned into a massive black-and-white keyboard.