Freda Josephine McDonald, better known as Josephine Baker, would have been 100 years old this year. Even though she died at age 68, this St. Louis native seemed to live one thousand lives in one: She danced and sang and won the hearts of many Europeans (and Americans, eventually), she was a civil-rights activist, and she was investigated by the FBI for "communistic affiliations" during the height of McCarthyism (the Freedom of Information Act makes a little more than half of her FBI files, or the portions of them that aren't blacked out anyway, available online creepy yet fascinating stuff).
The Webster University jazz faculty and vocalist Jeanne Trevor choose to focus on Baker's early musical career as well as on the works of other Americans who took their jazz across the Atlantic with Jazz Away from Home: Josephine Baker and American Jazz in Europe, 1919-1939, a 7 p.m. concert at the university's Moore Auditorium (470 East Lockwood Avenue). Admission to the performance costs $5; for more information call 314-968-7128.
Mon., Feb. 6