Henry Jay Lewis (October 16, 1932 – January 26, 1996) was an African-American double-bassist and orchestral conductor.
After returning to the USA, Lewis founded the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. In 1963 he travelled with his orchestra in Europe under the auspices of the State Department. He gained national recognition in 1961 when he was appointed assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra under Zubin Mehta, a post he held from 1961-1965. In 1968 he became the conductor and musical director of the New Jersey Symphony, transforming the group from a small community ensemble into a nationally recognized orchestra. He was the first African-American to lead a major symphony orchestra. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut in 1972 and after retiring from the New Jersey Symphony in 1976, he toured as a guest conductor in all of the major opera houses. From 1989 to 1991, when Kees Bakels succeeded him, he was principal conductor of the Netherlands Radio Symphony.
The manuscript Blue Lines is the fictional coming of age narrative of a young California woman Key Yemaya Walker, and her 2 year growing journey through school, love, and life period piece, written by Kenneth Suffern, Jr., taking place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill between the years of 1997 – 1998. Loosely based on true events, and experiences during that time, told through the eyes and voice of the main female protagonist, a freshman first attending the school