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Upcoming Events

Live Music at Pasta Fresca

July 25 @ 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:00pm on Tuesday, repeating until January 30, 2018

Amos Hoffman and Sam Edwards Duo

July 25 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 7:00pm on Tuesday, repeating until November 28, 2017

Kanika Moore at Main Street Public House

July 26 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Presenting Jon Stot Juru Jones

July 27 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

See All Events

Let us know about your jazz events!



Pops Message of Hope

Shelley Magee gave a passionate speech at the funeral services of our SC Jazz Ambassador Skipp Pearson. Thankfully, she agreed to let us post her speech on ColaJazz.com for you to read. You will be glad you did.


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Pops Message of Hope

June 19th, 2017|0 Comments

Pops was my mentor, my friend, and like a second father to me. Many years ago, he told me that if I wanted to be a better singer, I should listen to more horn players. He gave me my first Sonny Rollins record and my first Shirley Horn record. He was a musical force of nature in my life, but there are so many people in this room today who are far more qualified than me to talk about Pops and his music. So I’m going to leave that to them. Rather than talk about Skipp Pearson the band leader, I’d like to talk about Skipp Pearson the man.

Pops was one of the biggest hearted, most selfless, genuine people I’ve ever known. He didn’t care about the color of your skin, which church you go to, or how old you are. He saw past the packaging of a person and looked directly into your soul. If he liked what he found there, he adopted you as his own. Whether you believed you were worthy or not, if Pops saw potential in you as a person, or as a player he made it his job to help you realize that potential and become the very best version of yourself.

I’ve always thought of Pops as an elegant man. He wore class and dignity and that incredible cool he had like a comfortable shirt. He had an effortless gravitas about him that commanded respect, without him ever having to ask for it. Yet somehow, his lack of ego, his quick humor, and his incredible soulfulness made him deeply relatable and accessible to us all. He was one of those rare people you could think of as both a hero and a friend at the same time. And he was certainly both to me.

Although Pops was an important influence on my life across almost two decades, we became especially close over the last five years. We spent a lot of time breaking bread together, talking about his hopes for jazz in Columbia, talking about the larger state of the world, and just listening to music in the comfort of one another’s company. We even had regular weekend breakfasts at my kitchen table. He’d ask me if I’d mind making him “some yellah grits and runny eggs” while he would tell me stories about his childhood, his time in the military, and about the struggle of being one of the first African American leaders of an integrated jazz band in South Carolina. And even though I was the one standing at the stove, we all know that Pops was the one who knew how to make a story sizzle when it hit the fat.

Pops was rarely sad, and he was never bitter. Not about the past, not about the present, not about losing his beloved wife Sandy, and not even about getting sick. He said once, “You know what the problem with people is today? They just don’t know how to suffer anymore.” What a deep thing to say. What a totally Pops thing to say. The grace and joy that Pops always navigated life with, in spite of his own suffering, stands as an example to us all. When I find myself upset about the small stuff, or becoming too self involved, I think about that.

Pops had a seeming endless supply of love and of hope. He believed in the fundamental goodness of people, and he wanted us all to see the world as he did. He saw us all as a collection of beautiful and unique souls to be nurtured. And he believed that we are all capable of rising above our baser instincts like selfishness, anger, and fear, if only he loved us enough, and we in turn, love each other enough.

Whether he meant to or not, Pops instilled that hope in me. And I believe that was the most important thing he ever taught me. Even as I have recently watched the world around us grow increasingly divided along racial and socioeconomic lines. Even at a time during which the public discourse has broken down to sound more like a shouting match. Even at a time during which any person of reason and empathy cannot help but fear that the world is moving backwards instead of forwards, I find that thanks to Pops, I remain optimistic. So I’d like to share with you today what Pops had to say to me about the current state of things because he would want his words to give you that same hope. Because it says so much about what a wise man he was. And because it speaks directly to profound his belief in unity through community…something he lived by example every day of his life.

Pops was having dinner with Sidney Mitchell and I, two of many of his adopted children. At the time Ferguson and Charleston Emanuel were all over the news. And we were talking about it together. Sidney and I both were feeling deeply saddened, and even a little hopeless. Sidney made the comment that with everything that was going on in the country, it felt like race relations were as bad as they had ever been. But Pops surprised us by saying that he was actually hopeful. We were both wondering how he could possibly feel that way. And he said something like, “I was around when they were turning fire hoses and dogs on peaceful protesters. I was around when I couldn’t drink from the same water fountain as you, Shelley. Believe me when I say that things are not the worst they’ve ever been.” Then he said, “You two need to have hope. Maybe y’all are too young to understand this, but you can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs.”

I was kind of puzzled by that last part, so I asked him what he meant. He explained by saying something very similar to this, “During the civil rights movement, things got really ugly. They got ugly because the world was changing. But that change, that move towards what was right was an unstoppable force. And that kind of unstoppable change made a lot of people scared. And scared people do ugly things. Fear is a poison,” he said.

Pops went on to explain that the more those scared, angry people realized that this change was inevitable, the worse their behavior. Then he said, “If you think about it, right now it’s the same thing. And that’s exactly why you should have hope. Things are bad because we’re making progress. That’s the only way change can happen.”
He pointed out that America is getting more diverse. That young people don’t care so much about skin color. That an African American man was elected President, something he never thought he would see in his lifetime.

Then he reminded us that this all scares some people. People who can only build themselves up by tearing others down. People who aren’t sure they can succeed in a world where the deck is not stacked in their favor. “And so,” he said, “there’s some crazy stuff going on in this country right now. Because this movement in the direction of what is right is once again unstoppable. And that is cause for hope.” He concluded, “Y’all have to understand that we’re going to take some steps backward in order to move forward. Cause if we’re going to finish making this omelette, we’re gonna have to break some eggs.”

I will will remember this incredible conversation for the rest of my life. I think about it almost every day. And I think more than anything, that’s what Pops would want me to share with you today. His hope. He believed in us all so much. Often more than we believed in ourselves. He understood that the love he shared with us through his music, his mentorship, and even his smallest actions had immense power. And I think he wanted you all to understand that your music, your words, and your actions, can have just as much power as his did. And that is the beautiful potential that he saw in us all.

So I’ll conclude today with a quote from my dear friend, and one of Pops many other adopted children, Todd Edmunds. Todd can’t be with us today, but Pops was like a father to him and they played together for many years. The day he passed, Todd and I were together. We were talking about what he taught us. And as a musician brought up by Pops, I expected Todd to focus on what he taught him about jazz and about music. But instead Todd simply said, “Skipp taught me a lot of things…a whole lot of things. But probably the most important is that love is the biggest gun.”

We love you too, Pops. We celebrate you. And we thank you for understanding that changing the life of one person fundamentally changes the world. So when you leave here today, please carry his love and his hope out those doors with you inside your heart…because “Pops don’t stop.”

Skipp Pearson Going Home Remarks by Shelley Magee, 6-18-17

Resources for Artists

May 15th, 2016|0 Comments


“A Busker is a person who performs in public areas, accepts donations from the public and has obtained a permit pursuant to the ordinance.”

“‘Perform’ includes, but is not limited to the following activities: acting, singing, playing musical instruments, pantomime, juggling, magic, dancing, reading, puppetry, sidewalk art and reciting. Buskers shall not offer items for sale but they may offer items in exchange for a donation.”

Get your license, then stop by the One Columbia office at 1219 Taylor Street to pick up a Busker Care Package, containing parking tokens, water bottle, t-shirt and snacks.


Studio space available:
Tapp’s Art Center

Art Supplies:
City Art

City Art Classes
Art Center & Backman Gallery



Office/Conference space:
One Columbia have a conference room, and extra office space that can be used by any arts group in Columbia in need of a place to meet or work.

Notary Public:
One Columbia can notarize documents for you, just make an appointment. 

One Columbia is in possession of a GoPro Camera that they can lend out to arts groups and organizations in Columbia for no charge.

If a group or artist was in need of one or multiple easels, we have 12 in our office to lend out.

For more information or any questions, you can call One Columbia’s office at (803) 254-5008 or visit them at 1219 Taylor Street.


One Columbia

May 14th, 2016|0 Comments


One Columbia for Arts & History is a non-profit organization formed to support and promote tourism in Columbia, South Carolina. Our mission is to advise, amplify and advocate for the unified arts and history community. We work to promote collaboration through shared celebrations of Columbia’s arts and historic treasures with the goal of raising the quality of life for our citizens, attracting tourist dollars to our city, and further enhancing our vibrant downtown.


Our Mission

Through the following actions, One Columbia for Arts and History will coordinate and maintain advertisements and promotions related to tourism development on behalf of the City of Columbia and arts/history organizations:

To Advise
One Columbia for Arts and History, in an effort to celebrate, promote and elevate the role of arts and history in our city, serves in an advisory role to City Council. Our goal is to unify and focus efforts toward a larger shared purpose and common agenda.

To Amplify
One Columbia for Arts and History serves to amplify and enhance the efforts and programs of already established arts/history organizations. By providing a vehicle that encourages organizations to celebrate and promote each other through cooperation and collaboration, we will increase tourism to benefit all.

To Advocate
In support of the City’s Strategic Plan, One Columbia will work to foster creativity and expand the knowledge of and enthusiasm for history and arts by telling the story of companies, artists and venues and demonstrating the value of the cultural community to the economic interests of the City.


Our Initiatives

Public Art – One Columbia for Arts and History is working to feature the City’s current public art and to bring even more to the community. You can find more about the specific projects we’ve completed and are working on here

Show & Tells – In order to connect the broad array of arts organizations in the City, we’ll be hosting a couple of gatherings a year to build partnerships, learn more about the upcoming events and activities, and to gather feedback from the arts community. If you’re an arts organization that would be interested in participating, please email us!

Film Columbia – One Columbia is working with local filmmakers to shoot footage of artistic and cultural events throughout the city. This footage is then archived and available for use by the arts organizations, local government, tourist organizations and media outlets to promote and celebrate Columbia as a cultural hub. Find edited videos of the events we’ve recorded at our Vimeo page and contact us if you would like to obtain footage. 

The Passport – Starting in August 2014, One Columbia will be launching a cultural passport iniative. More details to come!


Our Funding

One Columbia is supported by hospitality tax revenues directly allocated by City Council for the purpose of coordinating and communicating the activities and benefits of history, arts and culture for the City.