Picó Picante is back at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, Boston this summer on July 31st, teaming up for their Wavelengths outdoor programming!
Fresh off my European tour, I’m please to play a benefit for The Jamaica Project, a small project furthering education, cultural exchange and sharing resources between the region of St. Elizabeth, Jamaica, and the NorthEast Coast of the US.
As we see in relation to Greece the depredations of the IMF and rabidly destructive austerity and “economic restructuring” projects, I’ve been struck by the fact that these projects have already been in place in disastrous results in Jamaica (and for those of you with long enough memories, Russia before that). In Jamaica, although there is wealth, it is not in the hands of the Black majority, and people in these districts farther from the city struggle, with a great deal of heart and creativity but not a lot of resources.
The Jamaica Project is heartening me for me, as an example of how people can attempt to move resources back in the direction they should be going: it includes a breakfast program for kids in school in St. Elizabeth (something I’ve been increasingly aware of as an educational issue even here in NY teaching at the college level), and a teacher exchange program that partners schools in NY and NJ and also sends tutors down to JA to support educational programs happening there. There was also a sweet little project where kids in the two countries learned each others songs: students from Hamilton Park Montessori in Jersey City, and students from Bigwoods Primary school in St. Elizabeth JA collaborated: the Bigwoods kids sent two Jamaican folk songs were sent to New Jersey, who sent two school favorites back to St. Elizabeth. All students learned all four songs and they were recorded and combined into a set of recordings that blended both schools together. They experimented with a concert in NJ where recordings from Jamaican school were blended with a live performance (I think a simulcast would be the next thing to work out)!
It’s a small, creative project, coming from the heart, and I hope it can sustain itself and maintain a positive, non-exploitative, non-savior approach to support Jamaicans whose labor, skills, and talent have provided so much wealth to the rest of the world.
The night, at Max Cellar (2 Knickerbocker Ave, Brooklyn, New York 11237) will be a combination of live acts and DJs:
RSVP at the event page (donations gratefully accepted at the door): Jamaica Project Party
Longtime Dutty Artz family, but newly inaugurated official member of our little DJ union, Uproot Andy is going to be hitting up all the Bodegas across Europe for the next month.
The tour kicks off in Croatia today, on his birthday! Check him at the rest of the above dates, and don’t forget about the Barrioteca EP Vol. 1!
Stream and download it here:
“Music is the only language I really know” — Sam / State of Bengal (more…)
Can hardly believe it, but PICÓ PICANTE celebrates our fourth anniversary this weekend, and for the occasion we’re bringing the party to Boston/NYC for a reggaetón rave of dreams.
Don’t miss the NYC debut of Angolan musical legend Paulo Flores. (more…)
Geko Jones & Mama Bass’ DJ Chela present a new dance-focused party bringing global bass to Brooklyn every third Friday: (more…)
Dutty Artz has been planning a little takeover of Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre for awhile now. We were asked months ago to showcase how it is that we curate this thing called “global bass” – and tonight, we’re doing that and teaming up with some friends and partners for Harbourfront Centre’s Party on the Block. While Chief Boima was supposed to join me, some unexpected hiccups unfortunately led to him being unable to come. HOWEVER – we quickly called on our extended Dutty Artz family and are pleased that tonight’s line-up is a all-brown women, bad gyal line-up spanning origins from Sri Lanka, Colombia, Trinidad & Tobago, and Pakistan. How better to experience a sense of connectivity and politics through migrant music if not in the hands of women?
Summer time means I can change gears a bit, step away from the classroom and head out into the world to DJ and connect with people. (more…)
This Friday June 19th, Chief Boima and I are headed northbound to Boston for my monthly party Picó Picante at Good Life.
Tonight June 11th, I’m excited to be back at #RemezclaPERREO in the basement of Webster Hall’s weekly House Party.
It’s going to be a long hot summer in NYC and Que Bajo has both the soundtrack and the parties that you’ll make you feel extra WEPA!
It’s always exciting to collaborate with Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, author the beautiful, thoughtful book Harlem Is Nowhere. This Friday, May 29, we’re staging a new work in NYC, at the New Museum’s IDEAS CITY Festival. The evening is “a performative conference in 9 acts,” ranging from dance battles to spoken word to something involving a hot air balloon; we go on promptly at 11pm. (more…)