Tammy Johnston

grandparents

Both sets of grandparents – maternal (pictured) and fraternal were instrumental in educating me on family history. My maternal grandfather was Billy Hicks, an exquisite musician and founder of the jazz band Billy Hicks and The Sizzling Six, and was one of the first African-American bands to integrate some of New York City’s finer hotels. Their parents migrated to New York from the south (MIssissippi, I think) and they remained in the NY, OH and NJ areas. My grandparents were very progressive and I inherited my sense of drive and dedication to music from them.

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