Category Archives: Music

AHFEST LOGO St Elizabeth DC

The Arts & Humanities Festival at St. Elizabeth’s East is a free festival showcasing the history, culture and community of Ward 8 in Washington, DC. The events feature an exciting scope of activities, live performances, art exhibits, readings and workshops that will be fun for the entire family!

Starting at 11:00amAugust 17-18 at St. Elizabeth’s East, 1100 Alabama Ave SE.

Made possible through a grant awarded by the Deputy Mayor’s Office of Planning and Economic Development, the FREE festival series the festival will be held over two amazing days with a closing event on Sunday, August 18, 2013.  The heart of the festival is located in the center of one of the District’s most prized historic campuses, St. Elizabeth’s East, in the 1100 block of Alabama Avenue SE.  The East Campus will soon be the home of a new Gateway Pavilion currently under construction and slated to open in September 2013. The Pavilion will serve as a gateway to the St. Elizabeth’s East Innovation Hub  and will usher in a new chapter of visitors to the campus, including local residents and the 3,700 U.S. Coast Guard employees set to start arriving on the nearby West Campus in August 2013. The Arts & Humanities Festival is the perfect platform to embrace the changes to the historic campus, while celebrating the District’s and Ward 8 community’s rich heritage, culture and creativity.

The Summer Celebration Weekend will highlight a wide array of local musicians, great performances and speakers including Faycez U Know, Rashida Tulani Jolley and Double Nickles Theatre on Saturday, August 17th. An amazing Sunday Praise Break will showcase area gospel talents on the afternoon of Sunday, August 18th. DC favorites Christylez Bacon and Tabi Bonney will close out the day with ultra-cool hip-hop performances!

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Weekend East City Event Round Up: Temporium Super Saturday Edition

DMV International Film Festival (all weekend)

The DMV International Festival at the Brentwood Arts Exchange will show a series of Arthouse films by international and local producers.  Tickets are $10.  Of note are the following films:

  • Friday, June 15th 5pm – 7:30pm
    Featured Film: Film Screening of ‘Tin Man” (Dublin, Ireland)
  • Saturday, June 16th 11am – 4:30pm
    Featured Event: “The Actors’ Intensive” Workshop with Winsome Sinclair
  • Sunday, June 17th 6:00pm – 7:30pm
    Featured Film: Film Screening of “Chocolate City” and “Charlie Casanova”

For addition information including instruction on how to purchase tickets, click hereBrentwood Arts Exchange @ Gateway Arts Center  is located at 3901 Rhode Island Avenue, Brentwood, MD.

Saturday June 16

LUMEN8Anacostia Festival Finale (6pm to 11pm)

The four month Anacostia temporium festival of light, music and art comes to a close the Saturday.  The event features a star-studded line up of local talent.  The schedule is as follows:

  • H Street Playhouse and The Theater Alliance
  • Southeast Trinity & Verbal Gymnastics at Honfleur Gallery
  • The DJ Eskimo Show at Vivid Solutions Gallery
  • A Chuck Brown Tribute at We Act Radio 1918 MLK Ave
  • Stephan Laplanche Open Studio
  • Temporiums, food trucks and live music

For more information including about this event including event locations and times, click here.

Art in the Alley (6pm to 10pm)

Building on the successes of last fall’s first Art in the Alley event, the residents of Trinidad, will host a display of artwork in the alley behind the 1200 block of Morse Street NE. Works will include visual and performance art as well as music and libations.  For more information click here.

Art in the Alley is located between the 1200 blocks of Florida Ave and Morse St NE

 

Artland Temporium Brookland (6:30pm to 9:30pm)

One of four DC Office of Planning and Artplace America grants awarded to improve commercial areas with dormant commercial storefronts, Artland promises to continue in the tradition of LUMEN8Anacostia with its own local “Brooklandian” flavor.  Of note is the 12th Street Gallery, a pop space organized by Danceplace that will pay homage to Hispanic culture via a group show of mixed media visual art.  For more information click here.

The 12th Street Gallery is located at 3500 12th Street NE

Phil Hutinet is the Editor-in-Chief of East City Art.  You can get more information about East HaCity Art on Facebook  or follow them on Twitter

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Cherryblast from the Past: Weekend Wrapup

pic courtesy of National Cherry Blossom Festival

Cherryblast, the annual closing party of the Cherry Blossom Festival, sponsored lovingly by Philippa Hughes and her Pink Line Project, was, unsurprisingly, a blast this past weekend in Anacostia.  The art, the games, the shows, the people were all part of a new and exploratory DC.  There were the usual suspects: aerial trapeze artists, a Bluebrain collaborative feature (pretty cool: in a four story elevator shaft), and an all-girl drum corps.

The not-so-usual suspects dropped in: The Floating Lab Collective, a group of artists who work to “expand the space of art into public space and to expand the discourse about contemporary art.”  Cool right?  As I walked into their van (I know, I know), the artist told me that there were paper bags of Mobile Memorials.  Anyone could take one (become a ReDistributor), providing they put it somewhere public and “check in” its location on the website.  Hopefully I’ll start seeing some of these objects around town!

The old DC Police evidence warehouse has effectively become Lightbox, an open and roomy space especially suited to video installations.  Listening to acoustic guitar strummed by a hipster-chanteuse while standing next to the old Medication Room and looking out the broken glass windows at downtown DC was…surreal.  And a ton of fun.

I’m eager to see how Anacostia develops as a new art hot spot in DC, “activating abandoned spaces with the arts“.  For more info, search #lightboxdc on Twitter.

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To Do Saturday: Cherryblast!

Not to be missed, Cherryblast IV will take place this Saturday at the Lightbox in Anacostia.  Following close on the heels of the hugely successful Lumen8 Anacostia opening party last week, Cherryblast! will feature artists, musicians, audio-visual installations, and I can’t wait to find out what else.  For a full list, click here.

As an official part of the Cherry Blossom Festival AND a Pink Line Project…project, it’s sure to be a thought out, delightful, and fully funded good time.  The crowds have gotten bigger and the lines have gotten longer each year, so come early.

Get your $10 tickets while you still can!

Starts at 8pm Saturday, 2235 Shannon Place SE.  Buses will depart from H Street and Dupont.  The Anacostia Metro is two blocks away.  Plenty of street parking.

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After Work Special: Birdlips

After work tomorrow, make sure to scurry over the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage for a free 6:00 performance by Birdlips.  I can’t think of a better way to swing into a gorgeous, sunny weekend than with this duo’s soothing, beachy sound.  Take a listen.

The Millennium Stage has free shows every day at 6:00.  From gospel to folk to dance, it’s never a disappointment.  And it’s always free!

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The Hamilton: Old Ebbitt Gets Refreshed

pic courtesy of Penn Quarter Living

Need more proof that DC has arrived? Look no further than The Hamilton, the latest offering from the the Clyde’s braintrust located at the corner of 14th and F in Northwest. Holding a capacity of 850 over three massive floors, it includes Washington’s newest music venue and it’s an insomniac — the whole place is open 24 hours a day. From the picture of Alexander Hamilton wearing Kanye sunglasses on the website’s main page, you immediately know you’re in for something different — this ain’t yo daddy’s restaurant.

First up is the main floor. The days of stuffy and stolid are over, folks – The Hamilton is totally the New Old Ebbitt Grill. And change is good. Combining elements of old and new, the familiar wood-paneled booths coexist in perfect syzygy with eclectic modern art and unusually bright walls. It makes for a very warm and convivial atmosphere. The upstairs bar is a bit off the beaten path and is markedly darker than its downstairs partner. I didn’t get a chance to check out the music venue but apparently it’s old supper-club style and the seating is first-come, first-serve. Ticket prices range from $15 for local acts to $25 and up for the bigger names. Eddie Money played about a month ago.

The menu offers Clyde’s popular brand of American-new-delicious as well as a sushi bar to cater to DC’s ever-widening palate. They offer over 20 different beers and wines by the glass as well as an extensive cocktail list featuring Washington’s newest small-batch liquor creations.

Bargain hunters beware – the place is a little pricey, but nothing out of the norm for a swanky downtown establishment. For good reason, The Hamilton is immensely popular right now, so if you’re looking to have a more intimate meal with normal conversation levels, I recommend Ceiba just a block away. Either that or plan a late dinner, like at 4am.

Written by Joel Church. You can buy his book Fingerprints here at Amazon.

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Rick Ross at DAR

Purveyor of polished music videos (replete with tricked-out cars and busty babes) and recent recipient of MTV’s Hottest MC in the Game award, Rick Ross played DAR Constitution Hall last night. You’d think a big commercial name like Ricky Rozay would be sure to pack ‘em in from miles around, but that’d be a negatory, good buddy – the venue was embarrassingly empty. Like, entire-sections-empty empty. I couldn’t help but wonder why. Was it the overpriced tickets ($55-$116) or was the show just poorly promoted? I only heard about it on Tuesday through a bit of luck. Maybe it was a little of both.

Maybe it was the incessant m-m-m-m-Maybach Music shoutouts and Michael Bay-esque diamond explosions that looped at the beginning and end of each and every song. Yeah, that didn’t get old. You can’t fault him for being a shameless self-promoter, but damn, Rick. Keep it gangsta.

To his credit, the Boss has a good stage presence, spittin’ out rhymes and boasts while lumbering around the stage like a blinged out grizzly bear. He played all his hit songs, including Everyday I’m Hustlin, Blowin’ Money Fast, I’m Not a Star, and coke-dealer anthem 9 Piece.

He was trying his best to give the concertgoers their money’s worth, but for whatever reason the crowd seemed largely disinterested — they tepidly sang along and seemed to just be standing around bored. DC’s always been known for its notoriously fickle, hard-to-please hip-hop crowds, but damn. I mean, you spent a lot of money on going to this show, at least try to have a good time. Unsurprisingly, Rick left the stage without fanfare and didn’t stay for an encore.

I left feeling a little sorry for the Don. The abundance of empty seats and the small crowd’s lack of enthusiasm got me wondering if despite his massive popularity, is it possible Ricky Rozay is the Nickelback of the hip-hop circuit?

Written by Joel Church. Buy his book Fingerprints here at Amazon.

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Die Antwoord: Huh?

pic courtesy of Consequence of Sound

A heady brew converged upon Nightclub 9:30 (for more on the history and identity of the 930 Club, see here) last night to see the Zef movement’s crown jewel, Die Antwoord. Emerging from total obscurity in 2010, this hip-hop outfit crept onto the scene with a bizarre mix of rap, electronica, and world music. The band is a bit of an enigma – are they for real, or are they adeptly self-aware and the joke’s on us, a la Borat? The recent release of their second album doesn’t give us any answers.

For those unfamiliar, Die Antwoord consists of two fronters – Ninja and Yolandi, and a DJ who goes by Hi Tek. Ninja, never one to wear a shirt onstage, is proudly covered in crude tats reminiscent of the dude from Memento and wears little more than a pair of Pink Floyd gym shorts. Yolandi is a spunky, high pitched petite blonde with a crew cut mullet and a prominently displayed set of abs, and Hi Tek provides the beats. Got it?
Antwoord’s stop in our nation’s capital, in support of their 2nd album Ten$ion, was a crowd pleasing cavalcade of bass-thumping showmanship. Sure, their transparent efforts to shock comes off as cheap, but the DC crowd ate it up as Ninja and Yolandi spit out mad rhymes fresher than Speed Stick while jumping around on stage like a couple of crazed lunatics. Standout tracks include favorites Enter the Ninja, Fink You Freeky, and Fatty Boom Boom.
Once the hype dies down, the band will probably have to resort to playing The Gathering of the Juggalos, but for now, who cares. Fun time, great show.  Check out their new single here.
Written by Joel Church.

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