Archive for July, 2011
Take a Trip to Africa and Dance Your Heart Out with Some of Boston’s Best Local African Bands: Every Thursday Evening (8:00 p.m. – Midnight)
Anytime you are in the mood to move and groove to the sweet sounds of Africa, you can just head on over to the Cantab Lounge in Central Square each and every Thursday evening for AfroFunk Night. And what a party this promises to be! You will be treated not only to one, but up to 3 live bands representing music from various regions from all over the continent, without ever having to leave Boston! Furthermore, since the performance roster varies from week to week, you’ll come to know lots ‘n lots of great local talent. What a great way to sample Boston’s local African music scene and have a fun-filled time doing it too, dancing up a storm! Here’s a partial list of some of the event’s past performers:
Helder Tsinine & Kina Zori – Fusion of traditional and contemporary African genres
Galen Willett & Wildlife – Afropop
Tulikuta – Afropop, with emphasis on the music of Senegal, Cameroon, and South Africa
Forces of Nature – Afropop, featuring original compositions by Galen Willett based on styles of North and West Africa
Members of Zili Misik – Global fusion jam-style, featuring music of the African Diaspora
Tarun Balani Collective – African genres blended with jazz
Agbekor Drum and Dance Society – Percussive music of the indigenous Dogomba and Ewe tribes of West Africa
Uyanga – African-American soul music with a new twist
I must say that even though this establishment is definitely not upscale in any way, shape, or form, the regulars seem to enjoy the place regardless, and consider it a fun, informal place to hang out and enjoy the dance floor. And you can do the same, each and every Thursday evening at The Cantab Lounge to some of Boston’s best local African beats.
When: Thursday evenings (8:00 p.m. – Midnight)
Where: The Cantab Lounge (Downstairs @ Club Bohemia)
Admission: $5.00 – $8.00
More Info: 617-354-2685
Beat the Heat with an Evening of Cool Jazz, World Fusion Style: Join Annette Philip & Friends in Boston’s South End: July 26th, Tuesday (8:00 p.m. – Midnight)
Talented performer, recording artist, arranger/composer, and conductor Annette Philip has a real knack for creative and innovative vocal stylings, some of which she would love to share with you next Tuesday evening at Boston’s infamous Beehive eatery and music entertainment venue. She will be appearing with her very own Annette Philip Group as they bring you an evening of premier world fusion style jazz. In keeping with Annette’s highly creative spirit, the band continues to push the envelope with respect to the world fusion genre as they blend musical elements from many diverse cultures into their overall jazz sound. At the present time, one can definitely hear influences of jazz, funk, Indian, Latin, and Middle Eastern styles in their music, although the band continues to evolve on a never-ending artistic continuum. Their membership hail collectively from India, Germany, Ukraine, and the United States which, as you can imagine, is a huge asset with respect to their heavily internationally influenced playing style. Performers include Annette Philip (vocals), Bertram Lehmann (drums), Maxim Lubarsky (keyboards), Jesse Williams (bass), and Bill Vint (flute/saxophone).
As a recipient of both an award and a scholarship during her tenure as a student at the Berklee College of Music, it comes as no surprise that Ms. Philip is now a member of the school’s faculty. Performing professionally since the tender age of 17, she has shared the stage with such greats as Buster Williams, Victor Lewis, Jack DeJohnette, Shubha Mudgal, Fritz Renold, and many, many others. Other highlights of her career include singing spots on advertisements for major product lines including: Pepsi, Nestle, Panasonic, 7-Up, Indian Airlines, and Microsoft, appearances at the international festival JAZZ AAR (Aarau, Switzerland), hearing her own original compositions performed by some of the music industry’s top artists, and participation in a vast array of commercial recordings of all types. One of Philip’s dearest and proudest accomplishments is the founding of India’s musician’s aid program, Artistes Unlimited of New Delhi, which is currently considered a primary breeding ground for the country’s best up and coming talent. Locally, she serves or has served in various artistic capacities with Women of the World, The Makanda Project, Euphoria, Aditya Balani Group, and Maxim Lubarsky & Andres Espinoza. This highly accomplished local artist with her very talented band mates promise to keep the Beehive abuzz with the great sound of world fusion jazz next Tuesday evening as the Annette Philip Group takes the stage!
When: July 26th, Tuesday (8:00 p.m. – Midnight)
Where: The Beehive (South End)
Admission: No cover charge
More Info: 617-423-0069 / 617-423-0096 (Fax) / firstname.lastname@example.org
For dinner reservations, call OR use online form
Immerse Yourself in a Full Weekend of Latin Music and Latino Culture in Boston’s South End: July 15th – 17th (Friday -Sunday)
Latino culture, on the whole, encompasses a vast number of varied individual ethnic identities. Wouldn’t it be just great to have the adventure of sampling them all in one convenient location in a matter of days? Well, now here’s your chance at the Festival Betances! This event, viewed as New England’s premier festival of its kind, is literally designed to expose the public to the rich diversity that is Latino culture in one short weekend, jam-packed with ethnic activity in the form of concerts, dance performances, ethnic food, arts and crafts vendors, and other specially created happenings for all ages. And yes, it’s all for free!
Festival Betances, named for renowned Puerto Rican civil rights activist Dr. Ramon Emeterio Betances, is the creation of Inquilinos Beriquas en Accion (IBA). Since its founding in 1968, thanks to the inspiration provided by Dr. Betances, the organization has sponsored a large number of local projects and events, all of which have been aimed at strengthening the Latino community’s presence in and around the Boston area. (See previous post on their Tito Puente Latin Music series) This year’s festival, entitled “I am Villa Victoria”, is in honor of this infamous local Latin cultural center and affordable housing project. The facility stands as one of IBA’s proudest achievements and is considered a historical highpoint in the history of Boston’s urban renewal efforts. Rightfully so, it serves as the site of this annual celebration of Latino culture at its finest.
This years festival welcomes international music stars Larry Harlow and the Spanish Harlem Orchestra as their very special guests.
Larry Harlow (Appearing 7/16 @ 7:30 p.m.) – This 3-time Grammy nominee, originally from Brooklyn, NYC, is considered to be the forefather of the present day salsa style. He introduced both heavy brass instrumentation and the use of the Cuban Bata drum to Afro-Cuban music ensembles in NYC, thus enhancing the dance quality of the genre. He was both pianist and producer for the once renown Fania All-Stars and has since continued to thrive in his solo career.
Spanish Harlem Orchestra (Appearing 7/17 @ 5:30 p.m.) – Founded by Oscar Hernandez, this 13-member all-star ensemble has been going strong for over a decade and is most famous for their truly authentic brand of salsa. The formula for this great success is based upon a steadfast loyalty to the age-old traditions of the music from its very roots. This old-school style has won the band a much coveted Grammy award and is well characterized in their latest release entitled “Viva La Tradicion”.
So what are you waiting for? Here is your big chance to get to know Latin music and Latino culture like never before in all of their wonderful diversity. This festival is sure to be not only entertaining, but highly educational, as well.
When: July 15th – 17th, Friday (4:00 p.m.) – Sunday (9:00 p.m.)
Where – Villa Victoria (South End)
Admission – Free
More Info: 617-927-1707
Mexico’s Mana (listen) are considered to be the major forefather’s of the Latin version of rock ‘n roll. After 30 years or so of producing an impressive array of #1 hits and performing in front of countless sold out crowds around the world, they have become literal icons of the genre. In addition to the Latin flavor which they have brought to this most popular of Western genres, they have infused it additionally with elements of ska, reggae, and calypso. This highly successful formula of world fusion has earned them countless awards including: 3 Grammys, 5 Latin Grammys, 4 Premios Juventud, 3 Premios Lo Nuestro, 9 Latin Billboard, and 5 Latin American MTV Video Music awards. As a testament to the band’s continued monumental success, Mana’s latest cd release, their 8th studio album entitled “Drama y Luz“, has sold over 25 million copies to date.
Fher Olvera (lead vocals), Sergio Villan (lead guitar), Juan Calleros (bass guitar), and Alex Gonzales (drums), got their start in Guadalajara recreating the hits of their most beloved rock idols like the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones, among others. Eventually they began to sing in their native language, compose their own songs, and ultimately fuse Latin stylistic elements into their rock ‘n roll sound. At the time, they were one of only a scant number of bands experimenting in these areas, so by the time the movement “Rocken Tu Idioma” (Rock in Your language) became a popular part of the Mexican popular music scene, their well-matured style made them a natural favorite among rock fans in their home country. The group eventually changed their name to Mana which stands for “high energy”, a move they believe helped to bring them the great level of success that they subsequently achieved. This along with a decision to begin personally producing their own recordings along with the embarkation upon a tour that would eventually take them beyond Mexican borders for the very first time. The concert in Ecuador was a sold out success, which gave them the reassurance that they could indeed succeed on the international stage. Since then they have never looked back as they have truly enjoyed a steady and enduring rise to fame which has included, amongst other monumental accomplishments, a historical collaboration with fellow Latin superstar Carlos Santana.
Mana’s latest release, “Drama y Luz” (Drama and Light) is a true classic as it represents 3 years in the making and is considered to represent a “milestone” in the lengthy career of this iconic ensemble. Over 1,000 hours were spent in the recording studio producing no less than 40 compositions. This cd is a specially selected compilation of 13 of these songs which the band considers to represent their best work. Numerous additional artists,including a whole host of special guest stars, have also contributed their talents to this all-important recording project. Longtime advocates of global ecology, the group composed the opening number, Lluvia al Corazon (Rain in the Heart), as a call of awareness directed towards our declining natural environment. In 1995 Mana founded the Selva Negra Foundation in staunch support of this all important cause. To experience these Latin rock superstars in person makes for a spectacular concert experience to be sure!
When: July 17th, Sunday @ 8:00 p.m.
Where: Agganis Arena (Boston University)
Tickets: From $77.00
More Info: (617) 358-7000