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From Red Meat To Blue Notes: Drake University's Jazz Philanthropist

Could Des Moines, Iowa become the epicenter of the new jazz hotness? If Fred Turner has anything to do with it, Drake University will at least have the facilities. From the Des Moines Register:

Fred Turner's music career didn't last much longer than his drumming stint with the band at the former Kirkwood Elementary in Des Moines' Drake neighborhood, but his creative influence may last for decades to come.

The former Drake University student and retired McDonald's executive has given the university $1.5 million to build a jazz center on the east side of campus, the school announced Tuesday.

"I'm a frustrated drummer, frankly," he said from his home in suburban Chicago, where McDonald's is based. "But I love music and I love jazz, I really do."

Come October, Drake music students will have a new practice space, recording studio, small performance hall and a lounge. Turner has previously contributed to the university's jazz program; in 2008, he put up $1 million to endow a professorship of jazz studies.

While jazz lovers continue to pray for more fast food philanthropy (ahem), I'll be coming up with alternative headlines for this news item. Burgers to bebop? Big Mac to Jackie Mac? Trans Fats to Fats Waller? [Des Moines Register: $1.5 million gift is (jazz) music to Drake]