Freedom Sings concert and Homecoming tailgate launch Grady Centennial Oct. 2-4

It’s been a century in the making and the launch of the Grady College Centennial celebration is finally here.  The feature events include a concert by the group Freedom Sings Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. at The Classic Center and the Homecoming tailgate Oct. 4 two hours before kickoff on the Grady Lawn. 

“Homecoming always is a stellar event at Grady, but this year we will reach new heights,” said Charles Davis, dean of Grady College.  “From the concert by the award-winning Freedom Sings to our legendary tailgate, we will launch our centennial year with the appropriate level of fanfare. This will be a weekend to remember!”

There is no charge for the Freedom Sings concert, but tickets are required.  Visit The Classic Center box office or call 706-357-4444 to reserve tickets.

Meal tickets for the Homecoming tailgate are $25 each (no charge for children under 5) and should be reserved by Sept. 25.  Visit Grady’s Homecoming web page for more details.

Freedom Sings — Oct. 2

Based out of Nashville, Freedom Sings comprises several award-winning recording artists playing songs that have at one time been censored. Between songs, Ken Paulson, founder of Freedom Sings and former editor of USA Today, tells the story of the censored tune.

“Freedom Sings is a unique concert experience, bringing together award-winning recording artists, energetic rock, pop and soul music and a celebration of free speech in a fast-paced and interactive show,” Paulson said. “Educators applaud its innovative and inspiring approach; young audiences are entertained and engaged throughout.”

The band performs controversial songs spanning several generations. Past performances have included the songs:

  • “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie (1940), in which more popular versions of the song scrapped two verses about private property and poverty;

  • “Louie, Louie” by The Kingsmen (1955), which was the subject of an 18-month FBI investigation because of its unintelligible lyrics that were allegedly profane;

  • “Short People” by Randy Newman (1978), which the Maryland Legislature held a vote to ban the song on radio stations;

  • “It’s the End of the World As We Know It” by REM (1987), which was one of multiple songs Clear Channel ordered its radio stations to stop playing after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks; and

  • “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People (2011), which was banned on several radio stations due to its addressing the topic of school violence.

Musicians scheduled to perform include:

  • Dez Dickerson — former member of Prince and the Revolution, now a solo artist and entrepreneur

  • Joseph Wooten — keyboard player for the Steve Miller band, also with his own solo career

  • Bill Lloyd — former member of the hit-making country duo Foster and Lloyd, now a respected artist, producer and songwriter who has played with Cheap Trick and written for Trisha Yearwood, Martina McBride and Hootie and the Blowfish

  • Jonell Mosser — an electrifying singer whose performances can be found in such movies as “Boys of the Side” and “Hope Floats,” and on her own soulful solo recordings.



Homecoming tailgate — Oct. 4

Grady College proudly welcomes back its alumni, faculty, staff and friends for the annual Grady Homecoming tailgate.  A barbecue meal, cash bar, band and children’s games provide the festive atmosphere on the Grady lawn two hours before kickoff of the Homecoming game versus Vanderbilt.

In recognition of Grady’s Centennial celebration, alumni are invited to bring copies of their favorite photographs or upload them for the historical photo archive.

Videographers will also be on site to document reflections from alumni.  Interviews about favorite Grady memories, what being a Grady graduate means, and visions for Grady’s future will be recorded for the future Centennial online video archive.

Centennial celebration

The Centennial celebration will feature events through its anniversary year, 2015, and includes the 100th Birthday Field Party and Centennial Gala April 16-19, 2015, and a series of receptions in cities around the country.  A Centennial website, generously designed by Red Clay Interactive as a gift-in-kind, will be unveiled before the Centennial launch at the end of Sept. at

Sponsorships recognizing Grady’s contributions to journalism, mass communication, public relations, advertising and business are available and can be viewed at the sponsorship website.

Date: September 2, 2014
Author:  Sarah Freeman,; Joe Dennis,