Posts filed under ‘Local Artists’
Join in the Summertime Fun Reggae Style as Hot Like Fire Lights Up Boston’s Infamous Downtown Crossing: August 28th, Tuesday & August 30th and September 6th, Thursday (5:30 – 7:30 p.m.)
Yes indeed!It’s a block party and you’re invited for free. That’s right, no cover charge for one of Boston’s top Caribbean party bands. Widely considered to be the no. 1 dance band on the East coast that performs reggae in true authentic style, Hot Like Fire has been nominated three times for the Boston Music Awards and is the 2011 winner of the New England Urban Music Award for Best Caribbean Band. Dance, dance, dance up a storm in front of Downtown Crossing’s Macys , to the reggae beats of the bands originally composed tunes, Bob Marley oldies and other well-seasoned crowd favorites, as well as special arrangements of top hits from other popular genres. You can even expect some soca, ska, and calypso style sounds thrown in for a little extra variety. Hot Like Fire always gets and keeps the crowd going while they demand encore after encore performance.
SurfSide5 Beach Bar & Grill (Beach Party)
Can’t make the block party? Then just come to the beach party at the SurfSide5 in Salisbury, MA. Every Sunday during the summer season and on into the fall, Hot Like Fire attracts approximately 600 fans to this seaside eatery’s 8,ooo square foot outdoor dance floor. In addition to the music, you can enjoy their picnic style fare of fresh Maine lobster, New England clam chowder, a variety of salads, sandwiches, paninis, wraps, and hot dogs too. Come to either of these two events and I guarantee you that you will be movin’ and groovin’ to some of the very best reggae around anywhere!
About the Band
Kelly B., the band’s leader and composer, founded the group in 1998 while a student at the Berklee School of Music. After a trip to Barbados, she was inspired to start-up her own reggae band. Hot Like Fire’s current membership includes: Kelly B. on lead and back-up vocals, trumpet, and percussion, John “Redd” Lima on back-up vocals and keyboards, M’ Talewa Thomas on bass, Glen “De General” Grant on drums, Charleston Sarjeant on keyboards and steel pan, and dj Flex Murder on vocals.
When: August 28th, Tuesday and August 30th and September 6th, Thursday (5:30 – 7:30 p.m.)
Where: Downtown Crossing (In front of Macys)
When: Sundays (Summer season – Columbus Day) – Starting at 4:00 p.m. and continuing until anywhere between 8:00 and 10:00 p.m.
Where: SurfSide5 Bar & Grill (Salisbury, MA)
Admission: No cover charge listed
More Info: 978-463=9222
Feast on Five Dollar Tapas Platters and Live World Music @ Masa in Boston’s South End: Thursday Evenings (9:30 p.m. ‘Til Close)
Each and every Thursday night, now you can enjoy the fine world music offerings of Los Three to the additional tune of scrumptious sampler platters of tapas. Come on out to Boston’s South End and let the folks at Masa, winners of Food and Wine Magazine’s “Best New Restaurant” award, treat you to an evening of their fine Southwestern cuisine enlivened with New England-style culinary touches. All the while you’ll be movin’ and groovin’ to Los Three’s high-spirited arrangements of Latin, reggae, funk, and oldies but goodies tunes. Such a combo of great music and tasty cuisine is sure to please.
Matt Jenson, on keyboards and vocals, is a member of the faculty at the Berklee College of Music and a tried and true Bob Marley aficionado. So much so in fact, that he actually teaches a course entitled The Music and Life of Bob Marley which always attracts large numbers of eager students. In addition, he also has a reggae jazz cd to his credit and two of his own bands, Acid Reggae Xperience and Rebel Tumbao. Over the course of his career he has performed with such renown artists as Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters, Johnny Adams, Mighty Sam McClain, Cyril Lance, and Johnny Neel. He currently performs on a rotating basis with a number of Boston area Latin bands.
Alex Alvear, on bass and vocals, leads one of Boston’s most renown Latin ensembles, Mango Blue, which features his own original and arranged Afro-Latin compositions. Before traveling to the US, he made a huge impact on the national music scene in his native Ecuador. Since his arrival in America over 20 years ago, he has continued to rise in popularity, appearing frequently around New England, in NYC, across the nation, and overseas as well. He has performed with such world music stars as Celia Cruz, Orlando “Puntilla” Rios, Israel “Cachao” Lopez, Francisco Aguabella, Paquito D’Rivera and others. He also holds the honor of being involved in the making of two Grammy-nominated cds.
Pablo Bencid, on percussion and vocals, was awarded a scholarship from the Berklee College of Music where he trained for a successful international career, performing frequently in the Americas, Europe, Australia, and the Virgin Islands. In his travels he has appeared at a number of the world’s most prestigious events and venues including the Istanbul Music Festival, Bolivar Hall (London), The Sodra Teatern (Stockholm) and many others. In addition to his performances with the well-known local band Either/Orchestra, he has also appeared with the Labeque Sisters of international fame, the JCA Orchestra, Zalo Grau & La Clave Secreta, the Aquiles Baez Quartet, David Holmes and Nu Quartet, and other notable names.
When: Thursdays (9:30 p.m. ’til Closing)
Where: Masa (South End)
Admission: No cover charge listed
More Info: 617-338-8884
Join in the Celebration of Bulgaria’s Special Day with Fabulous Folk Song and Dance: May 13th, Sunday @ 5:00 p.m.
Participate with Boston’s Bulgarian-American community as they celebrate the 8th Bulgarian Cultural Festival in New England in recognition of their native homeland’s independence as well as the establishment of the Slavic alphabet. Presented by the Bulgarian-American Center (MADARA), this well-established popular event promises attendees an evening of colorful folk music and dance originating from a wide variety of local regions throughout Bulgaria. Featured performers will include the folk dancers of Ensemble “HORO” from Chicago, women’s chorus Divi Zheni, and men’s chorus Zornitsa. I know that I have posted about this event before, however, this year activities appear to have been expanded a bit to include native food and games, making it a more family friendly event. So, why not bring the kids along too! This long-running ethnically inspired event is sure to please crowd members of all ages.
About the Performers
Ensemble “HORO” (The Ensemble for Bulgarian Folk Dances) is comprised of 40 or so very passionate adults and teens dedicated to the promotion of their native culture’s performing arts here in the United States and beyond. Artistic directors Irena Gotcheva and Todor Gotchev, both formerly of the highly esteemed Bulgarian troupe Ensemble “Silven”, established this Chicago-based troupe in 2003, assuring that their repertoire would represent all of Bulgaria’s main cultural sects in authentic folk music and dance including, Severniashka, Trakiiska, Shopska, Dobrudjanska, Pirinska and Rodopska. In addition to frequent local appearances throughout the Chicago area, the ensemble has also performed in St. Louis, Toronto, and Montreal.
Divi Zheni (Wild Women) is an all-female chorus which performs a most authentic repertoire of Bulgarian folk songs either a capella or accompanied by ethnic instruments such as the tambura, dumbek, and tupan. Members of this group come from a variety of ethnic backgrounds and range in age from young to old. Their repertoire includes both village and more popular dance songs which they perform at concerts, festivals and dance events. Founded in 2000, they not only appear locally, but nationally and overseas in Bulgaria as well.
Zornitsa, the male counterpart to Divi Zheni, was the first group of its kind to perform Bulgarian folk and popular songs. In addition to appearances at folk music events around the New England area, they have also performed in Bulgaria where they were aired on Bulgarian National television.
Tatiana Sarbinska, internationally renowned Bulgarian folk artist, is the artistic director of both Divi Zheni and Zornitsa. As a recipient of the prestigious honor of National Treasure status, compliments of the Bulgarian government, she is recognized as instrumental in the preservation of her country’s native music culture. Thus, it is under her tutelage that Divi Zheni and Zornitsa are able to perform so successfully in the true Bulgarian folk style. She has had and still enjoys an illustrious career as a vocalist and has recorded her own cds, Makedonsko Devojche and Katerino Mome. Since 1991, she has shared her numerous artistic talents in the United States through the direction of various ensembles, music events, and workshops.
When: May 13th, Sunday @ 5:00 p.m.
Doors open at 4:30
Where: ACAS Center (Woburn)
Tickets: $20.00 (Advanced purchase) / $25.00 (At the door) / $5.00 discount for students and seniors / Kids under 12 are free
Round Out Your Week with a Little World Fusion: See What Transpires When Japanese Folk Music Meets Jazz with the Tomoko Omura Quartet: April 26th, Thursday @ 8:30 p.m.
Jazz violinist Tomoko Omura is an artist with a mission. “I want to push the barriers of jazz violin” she urges, recognizing a pronounced absence of string players when it comes to the achievement of true stardom in the world of jazz. Still a young developing artist in the early stages of her career, already she has been haled by the likes of “The Strad” magazine as a creative genius, moving beyond the stylistic advancements made by even the great Stepahnie Grapelli himself. Her latest artistic venture, entitled Roots, involves the fusion of Japanese traditional music and jazz, the music from which will be featured at her Thursday night performance at Ryles with the Tomoko Omura Quartet. As with her earlier project, the “Visions” cd (2008), Omura shares her own highly innovative, leading-edge original works or arrangements, showcasing her ulta-modern interpretative skills and compositional techniques. However, even though she is truly an experimental jazz artist in her own right, one can still notice the influences of her earlier classical music training which remain ever-present throughout all of her compositions, as cleverly constructed improvisations are well balanced against solidly structured harmonies. With respect to Omura’s playing style, she is one of a tiniest minority of violinists attempting to solidly establish the presence of standard jazz idioms within her performances not normally associated with a string instrument. So, why not come and see what this exciting young jazz musician and her quartet have to bring to the genre, this Thursday night at Ryles.
Tomoko Omura developed an affinity for jazz early on during her training as a classical violinist. As a young music student attending Yokohama National University, she was one of a very few studying the instrument to take a serious interest in this particular genre. Eager to develop a career in jazz, she came to the United States to study at the Berklee College of Music where she graduated sums cum laude. During her tenure there, she became the very first string major ever to receive the coveted Roy Hanes award for jazz performance. Currently, she is enjoying a well accomplished professional career as a jazz composer and performer, having been featured in both The Strad and Strings magazines. In addition to her numerous recording credits, she is in constant demand as a stage performer, either as a soloist, leading her own small ensembles or as part of various other jazz groups, appearing regularly at top clubs and other major venues and events around New England and in New York City, as well. She also continues to perform in her native Japan where she was a part of J-Pop superstar, Mai Kuraki’s hit song entitled “Be With U”.
When: April 26th, Thursday @ 8:30 p.m.
Where: Ryles Jazz Club (Mainstage)
Admission: $10.00 (Purchase Online)
More Info: 617-876-9330
Join One Very Special Group of Dedicated and Passionate World Musicians in Their Celebration of Earth Day: Help Some of the Best Flutists on the Planet to Save It
Renaissonics – This energetic and upbeat group of Renaissance music specialists are considered to be among the “best of the best” of early music ensembles. They have done much to popularize the music of this period by infusing it with a renewed sense of energy and excitement, largely through their highly improvisational performance style. Still, in spite of it all, their Renaissance period repertoire is presented in only the most authentic manner, thus remaining true to its ancient roots. Each and every member of the group has earned themselves international merit as a soloist and, as a unit, they have performed overseas in France as well as with Michael York of Hollywood fame, the Sumaj Chasquis ensemble of Bolivia, renown jazz artist Bob Moses, and the well-known Latin band Sol Y Canto. They also contributed to the soundtrack of a Ken Burns documentary for PBS. The Rennaissonics currently serve as resident ensemble for the International Early Dance Institute, as well as the Killington Vermont Shakespeare Festival. (Visit their website)
Elizabeth Reian Bennett – As the truest of shakuhachi virtuosos, this Tufts University music professor has earned the most prestigious title of Grand Master of her instrument, an honor she earned as the result of years of extensive training in the art of Japanese traditional music. Not only is she one of a very few Westerners to ever have received such schooling, but she is the first female ever to have attain a professional career as a shakuhachi player. Known throughout the world for her impeccable technique, she was considered to be the very best in all of Japan for over 30 years. Although Reian Bennett is no doubt considered a leading authority on traditional playing styles, as is evident in her exquisite renditions of Japanese monk songs and classical chamber music, she also experiments with her own improvisations and various modern world fusion genres.
In October of 2009, I had the fortune of attending an earlier concert, the first, also put on by Mr. Senders for the same wonderful cause, this time in recognition of “International Climate Change Awareness Day.” As an ardent lover of world music, I thoroughly enjoyed the entire evening. Here is a summary of some of the highlights of that event, complete with photos. As I have said so many times before, it is truly a wonderful thing when world music can be employed as a catalyst in support of global well-being in any form. Kudos to Mr. Senders for giving us, the audience, yet another opportunity to be a part of such a wonderful project, complete with such exquisite music!
All proceeds of this event go to benefit the mission of 350.org.
When: Saturday, May 19th @ 7:00 p.m.
Where: Emmanuel Baptist Church (Boston)
Advance purchase options for tickets are available until 3:00 p.m. on the day of the concert
More Info: 781-396-0734 OR www.warrensenders.com OR Facebook
Broaden Your Perspective of Boston’s Fantastic World Music Scene: Compliments of the Berklee College of Music
View the Berklee College of Music event calendar.
Well, let’s face it, no tried and true world music fan, or even the occasional listener for that matter, can ever fully appreciate the full spectrum of first-rate entertainment Boston has to offer for their listening pleasure without delving into the local performance roster at large from all angles. This means, of course, looking beyond some of the obvious bigger names in the business from time to time. What makes the Berklee College of Music’s calendar of events so special in this regard is not only the variety and depth of talent represented there, but also the frequency with which world music performances are scheduled. Berklee even sponsors full length series and festivals. For approximately a 2 month period, I counted no less than 19 ethnic-oriented concerts on tap given by everyone from Berklee’s own highly talented students and faculty, many of whom have already made their mark beyond the local arena, to some of the bigger stars of the genre. Many of the performances are free, always a big plus of course, and in addition some are even available in virtual form via Concert Window for those of you who cannot make the show in person. So, what are you waiting for, I ask you? Just head on over to the Berklee College of Music’s web site and check out this amazing calendar for yourself.
Just to give you a brief general idea of all that Berklee’s performance program has to offer, I have included some highlights from the current calendar: Tao: the Martial Art of Drumming, the International Folk Music Festival, and Marcel Khalife. Here also are some previous postings from World Music Boston: Bruno Raberg, Sara Tavares, the Idan Raichel Project, and the Latin Music Series. There are also a ton of free student solo and group recitals on the roster which are not linked separately so I didn’t include them here, but they are definitely worth checking out. Of course, you can get a much fuller picture of events at the Berklee College of Music website or by searching keyword Berklee on my homepage. From world music’s biggest stars to those promising up-and-commers, Berklee’s most comprehensive event calendar represents a generous sampling of them all.
Help West African Drumming Star Moussa Traore & Friends Build a New School for the Children of Mali @ the African Rhythms Benenfit Show: March 24th, Saturday @ 7:30 p.m.
Listen to Moussa Traore.
This highly successful annual benefit concert, which features the music and dance of West Africa and the African diaspora, is in its 11th year and still going strong. West African-style music and dance performances showcasing the traditional cultures of Mali, Guinea, and Senegal will be featured. In addition more modern styles of semi-African performance art which involve a blending of various diverse genres will also be highlighted in variations of hip-hop, break dancing, jazz and other forms of Afro-fusion. This years featured performer will be none other than internationally acclaimed djembe artist Moussa Traore, a well-seasoned performer of 30+ years who is currently considered one of the best Malian drummers in the world. He will be leading a drum troupe composed of some of the areas most talented musicians. In addition, there will be a number of local dance groups also performing including, the Teriya Dance Company, Troupe Teranga, the Hip-Hop Mamas, Dance ‘n Feet, and students from the Movement Center (Acton) and the Harvard Academy of Dance who will add a little variety to the cultural mix with some Latin dance moves. All of the proceeds of this event will go to benefit the “Build a School in Africa Project”. This highly dedicated group of volunteers have managed to complete a total of 9 buildings thus far for the benefit of Africa’s impoverished youth.
Moussa Traore’s rise to fame in his homeland of Mali in West Africa started early on when, at the age of 17, he was selected as the permanent representative from his region to lead the local drum troupe into national competition every year. Under his skillful guidance, they manged to win each and every time! After 12 years of rigorous study in the art of djembe playing, he earned himself the distinguished title of Master Drummer and continued to build on his already illustrious national career, excelling as a performer, teacher, recording artist, and musical director. He has since gained an international reputation as well, not only as a djembe virtuoso, but a leading authority on Malian music. In 1994, he was invited to teach and perform as a part of Brown Univerisity’s “African Dance and Music Program”. Now a resident of New England, he continues to perform extensively with his own drumming troupe Timinandi and with other artists, as well, while recording a few CDs along the way. He also teaches classes and conducts workshops throughout the US.
To attend the African Rhythms Benefit Show is a multi-faceted experience to be sure. First and foremost you get to enjoy the world-class performance of Moussa Traore and his ensemble. In addition, you get a taste of what’s happening performance-wise on the local world music scene, including student dance activities who knows, you might be motivated to tryout some of these classes for yourself. Then of course, there’s always the satisfaction of knowing that you are contributing to the well-being of others on this planet who are less fortunate and in need of a helping hand!
When: March 24th, Saturday @ 7:30 p.m.
Where: Cronin Auditorium (Bromfield School – Harvard, MA)
Tickets: $15.00 (Adults), $5.00 (Students), Free (Children under 4)
More Info: 978-433-2384 OR firstname.lastname@example.org