Lovejoy high school senior plays Carnegie Hall on Saturday!

We should celebrate and encourage the positives happening in Clayton County - especially from our students, and Lovejoy High School Senior Darrel Jones has definitely accomplished some things worth celebrating.

Darrel Jones playing before the Board of Commissioners and public during a Business Meeting. (Warren Bond, Clayton County)

Darrel Jones playing before the Board of Commissioners and public during a Business Meeting. (Warren Bond, Clayton County)

Jones will represent the very best of Clayton County and our public school system as he plays the violin at Carnegie Hall in New York City on February 19 as part of the 2011 American High School Honors Performance Series.

Darrel’s interest in playing the strings began as a third grader watching a video on string instruments in music class. Upon entering middle school he began playing the viola in the school’s orchestra, and this past summer at age 17, Darrel began taking violin lessons. He is now skillfully trained on both string instruments.

Darrel received a proclamation from the Board of Commissioners in January for his musical accomplishments, and will proudly perform on a stage that has hosted such legends as Leontyne Price, Plácido Domingo, the Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, Beverly Sills, Luciana Pavarotti, Louis Armstrong, Yo-Yo Ma, and the Beatles.

Finally, Darrel along with the other winners from various high schools across the United States and Canada, will be featured on the weekend edition of NBC’s Today Show this Saturday morning.

Congratulations and good luck to Darrel! You make us proud! Can we send Darrel some love from this blog this week?

- By Kimberly Allen, The Clayton Talk blog

Sheriff Kem Kimbrough is hosting a series of meet and greets, and wants to hear from Clayton residents directly. The next will take place this Saturday, February 19 at Northcutt Elementary (5451 West Fayetteville Road, College Park 30349), 10:00 AM-4:00 PM.

23 comments Add your comment


February 15th, 2011
6:47 pm

Very good – see people – promote the good – more will follow

Clayton Connection

February 15th, 2011
7:29 pm

This is wonderful news! Clayton County students are truly making monumental achievements this school year!


February 15th, 2011
8:43 pm



February 15th, 2011
8:48 pm

This is a another of numerous wonderful and uplifting things that are going on with the youth in this county! Most against all odds. Outstanding

Lauren Jones

February 15th, 2011
8:50 pm

Go little brother!!!!! We wish you good luck,and take lots of pictures and bring them home!!!

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Brick House in FP

February 15th, 2011
10:11 pm

And Forest Park’s Hines Ward, of The Pittsburgh Steelers, just played in The Super Bowl last week.

“Under the guidance of coach Mike Parris at Forest Park High School in Forest Park, Georgia, Ward showcased his athletic skills as a quarterback and was a two-time Clayton County Offensive Player of the Year. He earned All-American honors from Super Prep, Blue Chip Illustrated & USA Today, as well as All-State & Super Southern Top 100 honors”

Tammie Jones

February 15th, 2011
10:31 pm

I am so proud of my son, he has loved music since he was a little boy. Now, all of his practicing and hard work is paying off. I can remember when he 1st started playing the viola in 6th grade; he would follow me around the house playing his viola he sounded terrible!! Lol I never said a word and he kept practicing,now he is playing at Carnegie Hall in New York City. To God be the glory!! I am so very proud of you Darrel you are going places.


February 16th, 2011
8:21 am

Lots of great things going on here.

Tell The Truth

February 16th, 2011
8:57 am

Great news. I’m happy to see him representing Clayton in a positive light. I would like my daughter to take up piano or violin. Anybody know of any good, reputable instructors in Clayton?


February 16th, 2011
10:00 am

It’s nice to see something so positive about Clayton County posted and the Commissioners acknowledging the talented Darrel Jones. WAY TO GO!!!

Shegale Crute

February 16th, 2011
6:18 pm

What a wonderful accomplishment for this young man. He makes Clayton County very proud. There are many more like him. Congrats!


February 16th, 2011
10:44 pm

I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened”. Then they took accreditation. The bottom line is public education is a publicly funded resource that is supposed to provide equal educational opportunities for all American children. We have to be fair in how we distribute resources and always mindful that we are not unfairly rationing opportunity. This child has succeeded against all odds. We will overcome.

Pia Porter

February 17th, 2011
4:34 am

My daughter plays in the orchestra at LHS with Darrel. I have had the opportunity to hear this young man play. He is outstanding. I wish him nothing but the best in his future.


February 17th, 2011
9:27 am

Another brag…..Jonesboro High won another Mock Trial Trophy last week-end….YEA….. JHS!

Lots of Darrels

February 17th, 2011
1:19 pm

Congratulations to Darrel and his family!!! An earlier post mentioned we have lots of Darrels. Yes we do and if we do not nurture them they will not be able to reach the level that Darrel has.

Common Sense

February 17th, 2011
10:16 pm

This young man will probably win a grammy one day. Too bad the thugs in Clayco refuse to work hard and achieve their own measure of personal success. I guess they would rather wallow in excuses rather than work hard. LOL!

Lots of Darrels

February 18th, 2011
12:41 am

Common sense that is nonsense! Our children are not thugs!


February 18th, 2011
1:25 am

Congrats, Darrel. It’s wonderful to see such talent and accomplishment. Now, as a County we must ask ourselves what we are doing to keep the Darrel’s here in Clayton.


February 18th, 2011
7:40 pm

The wise man learns more from the fool than the fool learns from the wise man. Common-sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom. However, in the case of our poster here, he’s senseless!

Virginia Burton Gray

February 19th, 2011
8:46 am

Congratulations, Darrel!!! I am always extremely proud to see our young people achieve notable accomplishments. I am overflowing with pride in knowing that you will soon grace the stage of Carnegie Hall.

Not only is this a great honor, this performance is an outstanding opportunity and monumental occasion for you and everyone connected to you, including the people of Clayton County. I wish for you continued success. Keep up the good work. Thank you for your extraordinary representation of Clayton County.

Sharon Starks

February 19th, 2011
8:07 pm

Congrats Darrel. Keep up the good work. I am so proud of you. Keep playing and get those scholarships and go places. I knew from a baby that you were special.


February 21st, 2011
4:02 pm

Go ahead. I see you do not actually do real news stories. Fluff pieces seem to suit you better. Heaven forbid a few investigative reporting forays in Clayton County. Just look at the last few stories. Sheriff substations, a violin player, economic development director, a Synamon ego piece, seniors due increases. Hard hitting !!

Go Kim, Go Kim, Go Kim