1:00 - Wayne Lavalee
2:00 - dead by dawn soundsystem
3:00 - Omar Nagati & Khaled Barakat
4:00 - Siren’s Echo
5:00 - New World On Fire
6:00 - Womens Words As Weapons: Cristina Orbe, Belladonna, Turiya Autry
7:30 - Isangmahal Arts Kollective
8:00 - Blue Scholars
From the belly of Portland Oregon emerges Siren’s Echo, (Oldominion’s Syndel and Hungry Mob’s Toni Hill), independent women striving to break the stereotypes of women in hip hop through conscious lyrics and spit fire delivery. The two combine soulful melodies and profound lyricism over the head knocking production of Pale Soul, Smoke, and Mako.
They’ve been on the frontline of Seattle and Portland’s burgeoning hip hop scenes since 1998, and have shared the stage with such notable artists as Xzibit, Blackalicious, GZA, The Roots, Snoop Dogg, Dilated Peoples, Ras Common Sense and Erykah Badu, as well as collaborating with such artists as The Living Legends and Rocker-T. With their magnetic chemistry, Siren’s Echo is sure to blow away the Vancity crowd!
New World On Fire
When someone asks “where have all the protest singers gone?” tell them to look no further than this new-skool hardcore band. New World On Fire was started in the summer of 2002 by four friends, all looking to escape the fate that small town boredom seemed to have in store for them. Adhering to the DIY ethics of their punk rock forefathers, the band played their first show after a few weeks of practice, and haven’t stopped since, playing over 60 shows in a year.
The band’s new album “Guided Missiles & Misguided Men” carries political analysis wise beyond their years, and is a wake-up call to other artists to challenge the commodification of their own punk culture. This is a well orchestrated combination of punk rock and hardcore, presented with the energy of a street protest. All hail the next generation!
Dead by Dawn Soundsystem
Working from an aesthetic of D.I.Y. punk and Industrial Culture, the Dead By Dawn Soundsystem is a political collective of musicians, and a collaboration of diverse projects, with the aim of altering perspectives on the linear boundaries of sound, music and consciousness. The Ensemble appearing at UTV includes members of Kathleen Yearwood’s Ordeal, Oh Death Here is thy Prophet, The Fear of Falling Backwards and DJ Tusk.
Wayne is from the Cree/Metis Nation and through the influence of his Native culture and music, he has emerged as a professional singer/songwriter and actor. Inspired by many genres of music, running the gamut from Led Zeppelin to Aboriginal chants that are thousands of years old, Wayne’s fusion of acoustic folk/rock with traditional Cree chanting makes his work unique, fresh and innovative. Not only has he opened for artists such as Buffy Sainte-Marie, Susan Aglukark & Kashtin, but his debut CD was nominated for Best Rock Album at the 2000 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards.
Blue Scholars is an experiment in the hip-hop tradition of the potent MC-DJ connection. DJ/Producer Sabzi’s funkinflected instrumentals provide a gritty, percussion-heavy texture that blends curiously with emcee Geologic’s poetic mic presence. Children of the 1980’s, they hail from the “middle-school” era of hip-hop, influenced by the likes of A Tribe Called Quest, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, early Hieroglyphics and Pharcyde. After years of listening to The Clash, Pete Rock, & Jimi Hendrix, Sabzi’s eclectic beats are musically infectious without conforming to the mold that dominates most hip-hop today. Geologic’s delivery was built on a foundation of late-childhood Rakim imitation, later refined by the influence of Nas, pre-Badu Common, Boots (of The Coup), Aceyalone, and many spoken word poets such as Saul Williams, and his folks, the isangmahal arts kollective. In addition, Geo’s rhymes carry socially and politically conscious content in a conversational manner without falling prey to the preachy vernacular. www.bluescholars.com
Isangmahal Arts Kollective
“Subverting Cultural Genocide”
The mission of isangmahal arts kollective is to create and maintain safe spaces for the expression of marginalized people through traditional and non-traditional art forms. Their objective is to promote self-identity through the process of cultivating social, political and cultural awareness and they believe that freedom of expression is a powerful means to achieve self determination.
Omar Nagati & Khaled Barakat
Omar Nagati (who grew up in Cairo, Egypt), plays the oud, a string instrument popular in most Middle Eastern countries, including Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Palestine. Khaled Barakat (tabla player) was born in the city of Rammallah, Palestine. He lived in New York for twelve years, where he joined Al-Watan (the homeland), a Palestinian musical group. He has lived in Canada since 1997, is currently the publisher of Al-Shorouq Monthly Newspaper, and is a founding member of the Palestine Community Center.
The duo will perform songs from the Nijm-Imam (poet/lyricist-composer/singer) populist tradition of Egyptian vernacular and Palestinian folk culture, using irony as a form of political satire and cultural commentary, while emphasizing the power of the word as a means of resistance. Mostly written between 1967-82, the various themes include critique of corrupt regimes, co-opted intelligentsia, bankrupt media and political discourse. In their polemic on social inequality and consumer culture, songs connect eveyday experience to regional conflicts and global resistance, linking Vietnam and Iran to Cuba and Palestine.
Women's Words as Weapons
This workshop will explore the power of women’s words, borne out of their experiences as artistic resisters! All three of these women wield their art as a tool, fighting a system that would rather silence their ideas than allow others to gather inspiration and fuel from them. But this is the spark that the molotov needs to explode. This is protest poetry for the people, these are rhymes of resistance, and these are women’s words as weapons.
Cristina Orbe is a rare talent who combines politics, poetry, and music into such a beautiful web that one cannot escape the spell of her smoky alto voice or the rocking of her poetic timbre. She presents the social and interpersonal issues of the current world in contexts that are both controversial and inviting. Her lyrics will make you think, her voice will make you feel, and her guitar playing will make you sway. Since 2000, she has graced stages in Portland, Seattle, Idaho, Alaska, and Vancouver B.C. She released two albums in 2003, her solo “Sway” and her band CD “ForgottenSOL EP”. www.cristinaorbe.com .
Educator, activist, author and performer, Turiya’s poignant lyrical observations take the form of slam poetry, hip-hop rhymes and soulful singing. An instructor at Portland State University, she teaches courses through the Women’s Studies and Black Studies Departments. The phenomenal solo artist also regularly tours locally and nationally as half of spoken word dynamic duo Good Sista/ Bad Sista (with Walidah Imarisha) and as member of hip-hop crew Womb Dialectic. She has opened up for folks like bell hooks, John Trudell, Spearhead and Saul Williams. May of 2004 marked her international debut, performing in Rwanda as part of the “Mobilizing Youth for Africa” Conference. Turiya’s 2003 “Grand-Slam Poetry Champ” title marked her third year competing in the National Poetry Slam Competitions (2000, 2001 & 2003). Using art and voice as a tool of resistance and awareness, the “Good Sis” is definitely a force for positive change. www.PoetryOffThePage.com
A poet, playwright and professional writer, Belladonna is also one of the most outstanding female MC’s to bless the mic. Her style is intelligent, inspiring and defiant. She first made her mark by placing second in the Caribana Rap-Off in ’95, and then went on to become a regular in the T.O. spoken word scene. In 2001, she appeared on the Dope Poet Society’s 911: World Trade remix, followed by the group’s more recent release War of Terrorism. To understand Belladonna’s sound, you have to fill your mind with jazz, gospel, soul, hip hop, resistance chants and straight up funk. She is active in her community, often speaking at workshops and awareness raising events, addressing topics of concern in the urban community. Violence, substance abuse, safe sex and body image are all prevalent in her work. Belladonna’s fierce lyrical prowess and strong political slant make her an MC to be reckoned with!