Arts This Week: Horace Scruggs

“Arts this Week” airs every Wednesday at 12 & 7 p.m. on WTJU 91.1 FM, hosted and produced by Aaryan Balu

Aaryan Balu: For Arts This Week, we chatted with musician and educator Horace Scruggs, who has a documentary being screened at Piedmont Virginia Community College this Friday.

Horace Scruggs: The title of the film is Following Our Ancestors Journey. I think it was in 1825, James Monroe sold five families to a plantation down near Tallahassee, Florida. Those were descendants of James Monroe Highland. And then in this area, southern Albemarle, in an area called Blenheim, there was another community of descendants of James Monroe’s enslaved peoples.

There was a reunion of those two communities, and so we were able to go and film that, and then just interview different descendants, so this is going to be a showing of that documentary at PVCC. The director of Highland is going to be speaking, as well as two people that are descendants from the James Monroe Highland enslaved people’s community.

AB: And on Saturday, Horace will be leading a concert at PVCC about the source, sound, and soul of African American music.

HS: I’ve got a five-piece band, and we’re just going to play a lot of good R&B, smooth jazz music, and then I’m going to talk a little bit about the language of African American music, and just kind of talk about how it has its idioms. Its phrases that are very common to lots of African American and African derived music. But mostly it’s going to be music, a little bit of talking and jazz. We call it the Listening and Learning concert. So we’re going to hear some good music, a little bit of Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, some Aretha Franklin, just lots of R&B music.

AB: The documentary screening on Friday is free to the public, and the concert on Saturday is 12. Both are at 7:300pm at the Main Stage Theater at PVCC, also known as the V. Earl Dickinson Building.

Arts This Week is supported by Piedmont Virginia Community College.

Tags: ,


Become a Sponsor

Underwriting WTJU is a way to broadly share information about your business. It’s also a way for your business or organization to gain community-wide recognition for your support of WTJU’s community mission.

Underwrite a Program


Your gift nourishes our community and helps bring people together through music.

Underwrite a Program