Category Archives: Music

Philadelphia music & musicians

Poetry

Art of Poetry, Philadelphia Museum of ArtThe Tony, Peabody and Emmy Award winning, six time HBO Def Poet Black Ice (pictured) and many of Def Poetry Jam’s most recognized poets will reunite for an evening of spoken artistry on April 26. (Image courtesy of the artist)

Art of Poetry at Philadelphia Museum of Art

In April and May, Philadelphia Museum of Art is celebrating the art of poetry through artist collaborations including film, performances, talks, tours, and workshops.

2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway Philadelphia, PA 19130
philamuseum.org

Now on View

Through June 9

  • Whitman, Alabama—Experience Walt Whitman‘s poem “Song of Myself,” brought to life through the voices of Alabama residents, to celebrate diversity and our connectedness to one another. This film by Jennifer Crandall is accompanied by photographs from the museum’s collection that suggest the complexity of American identity.This exhibition is offered in conjunction with Whitman at 200: Art and Democracy, a region-wide initiative organized by the University of Pennsylvania Libraries, with major support from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

Wednesday Nights

April 3

  • Art of Poetry Opening Celebration—Heralding our two months of poetry-inspired programs, performance poets make our galleries sing with spoken word while artists blend language and art. Drink and Draw with Martha Rich—Sip while you sketch with this Philly-based artist and make zines inspired by memories, eavesdropping, and found text. Rich paints words and food with a penchant for the absurd. Her work has been featured in Rolling StoneBon Appétit, and Entertainment Weekly. (Materials provided; drinks available for purchase.) Poetry tours with The Philly Pigeon—Join this collective, which aims to elevate and popularize the art form of performance poetry, for a lively tour through the galleries.Gallery takeover with the museum’s Teen Ambassador Group (TAG)—This group of high school students work with curators, educators, and other museum staff to create programs especially for teens.

Slow Art Day

April 6

Slow Art Day—This annual international event encourages museum visitors to slow down with their favorite works of art and do some mindful looking.

  • Poetry Workshops with Michelle Taransky—Learn to slow down with the poetic techniques of describing and responding, and discover new ways of looking at art. 11:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
  • Introspective Bookmaking with Candy Alexandra González—Explore the art of stillness and moving at a slower pace. Drop in for collaborative visual art and poetry exercises to produce a collectively made book.
  • Music in the Galleries: Lines/Patterns—Form and structure make the link between American visual artist Ellsworth Kelly and German baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach. Presented in partnership with the Curtis Institute of Music. 1:30, 2:15 & 3:00 p.m.
  • Spotlight Gallery Conversations—Engage in slow looking and thoughtful discussion as a different artwork takes center stage during each of five hourly gallery tours, 11:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m

Family Festival

April 7

  • Family Festival: Poetry Party—April is International Poetry Month, so words are our art medium during this month’s Family Festival. Read a painting, write a sculpture, draw a poem. Join artist Martha Rich and fill the Great Stair Hall with your wonderful words.

Friday Nights

April 5

April 12

April 19

  • Dawn Landes—Full of vivid storytelling, classic country themes, and eternal questions, the songwriting of this Nashville artist is as fresh as it is timeless.

April 26

  • Final Fridays: Def Poetry Reunion—Def Poetry Jam co-founder Danny Simmons invites some of Philly’s most recognized poets to gather for an evening of spoken artistry. Featuring Sonia Sanchez, Ursula Rucker, Black Ice, Vanessa German, Bonafide Rojas, and Jessica Care Moore. Hosted by Liza Jessie Peterson. A DJ set by Rich Medina with visuals by The Marksmen follows the performance. Please note that the museum will close at 5:00 p.m. before the performance, and will reopen at 6:00 p.m. for ticket holders only. Member tickets are on sale now. Public tickets go on sale March 8. Most galleries will be closed during this event, with the exception of exhibitions Whitman, Alabama, The Impressionist’s Eye, and Yoshitoshi: Spriti and Spectacle.

Talks & Tours

May 11

  • In the Artist’s Voice: Jennifer Crandall—Who is America? The filmmaker of Whitman, Alabama explores this question and more in a conversation with WHYY Executive Producer of Audio Content Elisabeth Perez-Luna. Support for this program was provided by the Albert M. Greenfield Foundation Fund for Education.

May 30

Thank you to Philadelphia Museum of Art for the content of this post.

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Ragas

Utsav Lal, Jesse Sparhawk, HOUSE Gallery

UTSAV LAL & JESSE SPARHAWK

live at Fire Museum Presents

Indian Classical Ragas on the Piano


Philadelphia, PA, United States HOUSE GALLERY 1816

Young Steinway Artist and Yamaha Jazz Scholar, creative pianist /composer Utsav Lal, often known as the ‘Raga Pianist’ has set a precedent with his innovative handling of Indian Classical music .

Seating is limited and is on a first come basis. For more info: steven@museumfire.com 

HOUSE GALLERY 1816,  1816 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125 between Berks and Montgomery.

Transport: Closest septa stop is Berks St and you can cut across the school feed for a shortcut into Fishtown. Bus# 25 stops on Frankford Ave.

Raga Malkauns (Alap-Jod-Jhala) London – Utsav Lal (2018)

Ragapianist. Published on Jul 16, 2018, Live at St. Nicholas Church , Chiswick, London May 2018

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SLEEP

SLEEP + MUSIC, MikronesiaRecording in Manila, India in the foothills of the Himalayas. Michael McDermott

SLEEP + MUSIC

Event Horizon
Friday April 13, 8pm
Juan Garces, BEEP, Mikronesia w/ William Fields​
The Rotunda

“Hello everyone, I’m back from three months of traveling, listening, creating, sharing and exploring in Thailand, Myanmar and India. I’m excited to be back in Philadelphia for the month and looking forward to sharing lots of sounds with the world!” – Michael McDermott

First up, two events the weekend of April 13a solo concert and a day-long retreat / sleep concert!

Mikronesia will be playing a solo show at Event Horizon at the Rotunda. For this show Michael Mcermott will be joined by his old friend and artistic collaborator William Fields on real-time visuals. This show will feature a live presentation of Mikronesia’s Landscapes work. In this series he works with field recordings from environments and decontextualize them using “sonic photography” techniques to explore the intersection of inner and outer landscapes realized through memory, emotion, time and place. This show will feature recordings and sonic memories from ThailandMyanmar and India.

I can’t wait to experience these sounds on the nice sound system at the Rotunda and with Bill’s realtime visuals, it’s going to be something else! (Below is an image of Bill’s work, check out his website williamfields.com for more of his amazing AV work).

SLEEP + MUSIC, Mikronesia

Event Horizon

Friday April 13, 8pm
Juan Garces, BEEP, Mikronesia w/ William Fields​
The Rotunda4014 Walnut St, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104

Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/189508868357704/

SLEEP + MUSIC, Mikronesia

Dream Yoga Retreat

April 14th – 15th

“The second event will be a day-long retreat of yoga, meditation, Deep Listening and an overnight sleep concert. This will be another event with a collaborator from my past with yoga/meditation teacher Michelle Stortz. Michelle and I worked together years ago when I provided music for some of her beautiful choreography. Currently Michelle and I both teach meditation at Springboard Sangha. In addition she does amazing work teaching yoga to people with cancer and as a Yoga Nidra (sleep yoga) teacher.

For this retreat, we’ll both be teaching and leading talks, classes and sessions throughout the day. Plus I’ll perform an overnight sleep concert at the retreat for people to practice lucid dreaming and listening (un)consciousness. If you’ve never experienced one of my overnight sleep concerts or my meditation / Deep Listening teaching, now is your chance! Also St. Raphaela Center is a beautiful space with lots of outdoor areas for walking and listening. The retreat cost includes the teaching, space, three meals and a place to sleep. Be sure to bring a sleeping bag and blanket for the overnight concert.” – Michael McDermott

Thank you to Michael McDermott, Mikronesia, for the content of this post.

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Food

How Food Moves: Edible LogisticsImage: Amber Art and Design, Corner Store Project

How Food Moves: Edible Logistics

Amber Art & Design / Ryan Griffis & Sarah Ross
Brian Holmes / Otabenga Jones & Associates / Cynthia Main
Claire PentecostPhilly Stake / Stephanie Rothenberg
Candice Smith with Freedom Arts / Kristen Neville Taylor

Daniel Tucker, Guest Curator, Graduate Program Director in Social and Studio Practices at Moore College of Art and Design
March 27 – May 27, 2017
Public Program and Reception: Thursday, March 30, 2017, 6:00 – 8:30pm
Our public program begins at 6:00 pm followed by the reception
Rowan University Art Gallery, 301 High Street West, First Floor, Glassboro, NJ 08028
Admission to the gallery and reception is free and open to the public.
The public program begins at 6:00 pm, led by guest curator Daniel Tucker in dialogue on art, geography, and agricultural planning with Professor Megan Bucknum Ferrigno from Rowan University’s School of Geography and Environment, and with exhibiting artists.

Artists explore the US food supply chain and its complex patterns of distribution in between the point of origin (the farm) and its point of consumption (the plate). The exhibition aims to highlight the work of contemporary artists grappling with the complexity of this movement through multi-media, research-based, and participatory practices that focus a lens on the social and industrial impacts of migrant workers, food justice movements, immigration, multiculturalism, and economic disparities. This project builds upon Tucker’s event series, Moving Units: Where Food & Economy Converge. A companion booklet, produced by Rowan University Art Gallery, serves to provide a general overview of US food supply chains. It includes descriptions of the artist contributions to the exhibition that relate to each step on the chain. Throughout this booklet you read about an approach to geographic education that values connecting with the world outside the classroom. The booklet was researched and written by Megan Bucknum Ferrigno, part-time faculty member of Rowan University’s Department of Geography, Planning and Sustainability. Additional contributions made by Dr. Chuck McGlynn, Dr. Jennifer Kitson and Makenzie Franco.

About the Artists and Projects

With Corner Store, Amber Art & Design – a team of Philadelphia-based artists that work on public art within marginalized communities that have little or no access to art – explores the contemporary sociological and psychological intersection between pan-ethnic Black and Asian communities in Philadelphia and how relationships are shaped based on which side of the counter we stand. (image top)

Illinois-based artists Ryan Griffis and Sarah Ross are represented by Between the Bottomlands and the World, a video (combining photographs, narrative writing, and moving images) exploring the rural Midwestern town of Beardstown, IL, a place of global exchange and international mobility, inscribed by post-NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) realities.

Brian Holmes, an art and cultural critic with a Ph.D. in Romance Languages has a long-standing interest in neoliberal globalization and a taste for on-the-ground intervention. His online atlas, Living Rivers, is devoted to the Mississippi and Great Lakes watersheds and shows these fluid ecosystems as they are inhabited by a multitude of creatures and radically altered by human enterprise.

Otabenga Jones & Associates, a Houston-based educational art organization, documents a collaborative art project and public health program addressing the ongoing crisis of obesity and its related risks with “The People’s Plate.” Inspired by the Black Panther Free Breakfast for School Children Program, this art project includes a public mural in Houston and programs to kick off a year-long commitment to health education.

Cynthia Main, a multidisciplinary artist from Missouri focuses on relating to the land as part of an integral view of a more sustainable society. She shares her hand-made buckets and barrels created using traditional techniques to readdress storage as one of the current dilemmas of localizing production.

Chicago’s Claire Pentecost uses photography to show how industrial agriculture is only partly about supplying food and how it is structured to meet the problem of expense and excess capital accumulation when considering the cost of complex machinery, brand name chemical herbicides, pesticides, fungicides, fertilizers, and patented seeds.

How Food Moves: Edible Logistics

Philly Stake is a locally-sourced, recurring dinner that raises funds for creative and relevant community engaged projects that contributes to the well-being of Philadelphia’s neighborhoods through community arts, urban agriculture, social services, and activist work.

Stephanie Rothenberg’s Reversal of Fortune: The Garden of Virtual Kinship is a garden in the form of a global map that explores the question of what it means to be charitable through the click of a button and examines the cultural phenomena of online crowd-funded charity and how the flow of money impacts the project, positively and negatively.

How Food Moves: Edible LogisticsStephanie Rothenberg

Candice Smith runs Freedom Arts, an after school collaborative art program at Camden’s Freedom Prep Middle School, which is creating an installation responding to the idea that Camden is a “food desert” and examining the movement of food at their school and in their community.

Philadelphia-based Kristen Neville Taylor’s installation – a globe depicting routes of oranges and actual oranges outfitted with a QR code that links to music, articles, folk tales, and art – was inspired by a lyric from Leonard Cohen’s “Suzanne” (“and she feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China”) which she associated with the market place and the movement of food but also romance and exotic foreign cultures.

Admission to the gallery and reception is free and open to the public. 
Free parking is now available in the parking garage on Mick Drive directly across from the gallery. For visitor information go to our website: www.rowan.edu/artgallery.

Thank you to Mary Salvante, Rowan University Art Gallery for the content of this post.

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DJ

DJ Robert Drake

DJ Robert Drake, Interview by Jimmi Shrode, 80’s New Wave Music

Robert Drake is synonymous with music in Philadelphia. When I met Robert in 1984, we were habitues of the Kennel Club, a now defunct New Wave/Punk Night Spot. The soundtrack of the Reagan era 80’s was New Wave/Post Punk music and we were steeped in it all. DJ Robert Drake is one of the most beloved radio and night club personalities in Philly. He started Sex Dwarf, a New Wave Dance Party following his 40th Birthday Party at Fluid Nightclub. Now in it’s 13th Year, Sex Dwarf is still going strong at Club Mousai at 1217 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. The second Friday of each month is a tribute to various influential New Wave Artists and music trends, such as the New Romantics, Synthpop and Electronic Music. You can listen to DJ Robert Drake on WXPN, Land of the Lost, all 80’s New Wave/Post Punk music, the Final Friday of the month from 7:00 – 11:00PM. Drake is also the co-host of Kids Cornera live, interactive radio show for children and host of Q’Zine; a look at Queer Culture and Arts at 11:30pm on Sunday nights. Read Robert’s blog at http://djrobertdrake.com/.

Who is DJ Robert Drake? Tell me about yourself.

“Born and raised in Philly, I carry my torch for Philly high and proud …. I love my hometown and always look for a chance to showcase it to new people. I’ve worked in radio for almost 30 years – all at one radio station (unheard of in this industry). I love music – but treasure my quiet time alone at home. I have a dog named Nomi – after my idol Klaus Nomi.”

What is your favorite part of being a Philly DJ?

“Being able to create a vibe and mood that will (hopefully) resonate with those attending the party – creating memories, friendships and even sparks of love by last call.”

Where’s your favorite place to play? Radio or clubs?

“While I love spinning for the masses – there’s something very personal about being on the radio. Even though I am reaching thousands of people at any second, I am talking to just one of them – and hopefully connecting with them as well.”

When did you decide to be a DJ?

“I stepped into the DJ mode back when I was hanging at a punk bar in Philly called The Love Club at Broad and South Streets … they had two scratchy Radio Shack turntables and I offered to play some of my LPs one happy hour … I was hooked! That had to be, wow – almost 27 years ago!”

Why do you prefer 80’s New Wave?

“As most people, it’s the soundtrack of my youth. But it’s also more – it’s inspired the current wave of pop music artists and so much of the 80s New Wave sounds like it could have been produced today … I love showcasing it!”

How would you advise aspiring DJ’s?

“As much as you might want to learn the best computer software programs – resist. Take time to learn the music itself. Don’t let the computer dictate what song should come next. Learn to read the crowd and be ready to make changes at any second. There’s no such thing as a playlist – so do NOT go into a gig with a plan. Just have fun!”

Written by Jimmi Shrode

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