Description Dignified and compassionate, Nat King Cole found his own way of overcoming the challenges that black performers had to face in order to survive in the world of music. And, he certainly did more than just survive. His love and talent for music won over the world and forged the way for future generations of black artists. There were, of course, other artists such as Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday who helped to bridge the racial divide by appealing to certain sections of the general public, but it was Nat King Cole who, in the forties and fifties, became the first black performer to have his own regular radio show and the first to have his own regular TV show. He still remains among the highest record sellers of all time with a consistent reissue and re-release of his recordings. Many people do not realize that as great a singer as Nat King Cole was he was probably an even greater pianist, and had he not taken up singing he may have been the greatest jazz pianist ever. As it was he won many awards in 'Downbeat', 'Metronome' and 'Esquire' for piano but, unfortunately, as Nat King Coles fame as a singer spread, his piano performances fell by the wayside. Nat King Cole always tried to include some piano playing in each concert he gave, but the full extent of his skills as a pianist were never fully expressed during the latter years of his life.Digitally hand painted image of Nat King Cole using a photo originally taken in New York City at Club Zanzibar (1946) by Bill Gottleib.http://youtu.be/D5IzRYyv5q0
I.M. Spadecaller, Tampa Bay Member Since March 2010 Artist Statement Matthew Schwartz (AKA Spadecaller) is a grateful survivor who conveys his convictions and serenity through visual art, poetry, and video.
As a child, he was trained in traditional oil techniques and later attended The School of Visual Arts in New York City (1970-71). During the 70's up until the late 80's he exhibited acrylic and oils in New York, and presently resides on the west coast of Florida.
Since the advent of image editing software, he has turned more to creative digital hand painted images and photos striving to fuse these into an art form worthy of the distinction traditional painters deserve.
Spadecaller showcase his digital paintings, poetry, and other mixed media images by creating videos; these are available for viewing at: http://www.youtube.com/user/Thespadecaller.