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The International Sweethearts of Rhythm in performance from the National Museum of American History Archives Center.

The Girls in the Band at the Smithsonian

By Joann Stevens

At the National Museum of American History, they’re the girls in the band; instrumentalists in the 18-piece Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra (SJMO) founded in 1990 “as the nation’s jazz orchestra” by Congressional appropriation and the advocacy of jazz-loving Congressman John Conyers (D-MI).

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