As a young boy Steven Berry, director of “Jazz in Philadelphia,” used to shine shoes outside of the Bird Cage Lounge, which was located at Ridge Avenue and Francis Street in North Philly. One day he had a chance encounter with Charlie Parker. He later shared what happened with an uncle. His uncle’s enthusiasm was contagious – Berry was hooked on jazz for life.
A jazz educator and historian, Ridley had a lifelong dedication to what he called “the positive music.” He hosted a Sunday night show on WRTI for more than 30 years. Jazz in Philadelphia? Yes indeedy!