Monday, February 13, 2017

BLACK HISTORY MONTH EVENTS CONTINUE @ THE CREATIVE ALLIANCE: FILM, DISCUSSION, SOUL MUSIC

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Film | Awake Zion

WHEN: Thursday, February 16 | 7:30pm
WHERE:
Creative Alliance at The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore
TICKETS:
$10, $7 mbrs. (+$3 at the door)
More Info & Tix

The infamous Crown Heights race riots in the summer of '91 set the tone for an urban battleground between Jewish and Black communities in Brooklyn. The fallout is still felt in this historically diverse neighborhood to this day. A vibrant and unique reggae music scene has emerged out of this tinderbox, which is a curious cultural hybrid of Rasta and Jewish influences—the most notable example being the platinum-selling Matisyahu. All of which begs the question: what gives?

For director Monica Haim, reggae music ignited something that went far beyond the melodies and beats. Her experience with Rasta and reggae gave rise to a discovery of shared histories and common beliefs - and an unexpected doorway towards connecting with her own Jewish roots. All the way back  to the alleged sultry affair between the Jewish King Solomon and the African Queen of Sheba, Jewish influence is evident in the  spiritual history of Ethiopia - turning up subtly in Rastafarian lifestyle and then, inevitably, in reggae. Chronicling the story of this unlikely kinship, Awake Zion unites Jewish and Jamaican musicians, scholars, and historians in a celebration of roots and culture—a beat-laden adventure that kicks off in Brooklyn, travels to Jamaica, the  birthplace of reggae, and culminates in Israel, where a sizzling reggae scene thrives today. Awake Zion is a deeply personal examination of what it means to be Jewish, Rasta, white or black - and, most importantly, the universal search for what it means to be "home."

Dir. Monica Haim | 2014 | 62 min.


Discussion | What does it mean to be Black?

WHEN: Thursday, February 16 | 7:30pm
WHERE:
Creative Alliance at The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore
Free!
More Info

Creative Alliance partners with SHAN in celebration of Black History Month to present a discussion: What does it mean to be Black?

Discussion with Activists: SHAN, Leila Rghioui, & Aurelio Martinez
Hosted by: Linnea Poole & L. Gerald Leavell II
Performances by: Shalanda Hansboro & DJ Pierre

Garifuna Soul: Aurelio Martinez

WHEN: Friday, February 17 | 8pm
WHERE:
Creative Alliance at The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore
Tickets: $20, $17 mbrs. (+$3 at the door)
More Info & Tix

Aurelio Martinez, singer-songwriter, guitarist and percussionist, is a cultural warrior for the Garifuna people of the Caribbean Coast of Central America. He and his band find a warm, inviting, danceable space creating a sound influenced by the Garifuna’s West African and Amerindian ancestry. On stage, Aurelio’s passion for his culture is equally matched by his guitar solos and warm vocal delivery. 

The original home of the Garifuna is in St. Vincent, which is one of the windward islands in the West Indies, where a distinct culture developed that combined West African and Amerindian influences. The Garifunas were deported in 1796 by the British government from St. Vincent and sought refuge on Roatan island, situated in the Bay Islands of Honduras. They later dispersed along the Central American coast, but held on to a their language (Garifuna), and their own music and culture.

Aurelio grew up in a small Caribbean village called Plaplaya, surrounded by a family of talented musicians. His father was a well-known local troubadour who improvised songs containing Garifuna roots rhythms and Latin sounds. Following in his uncles and grandfather’s footsteps, he became a brilliant drummer in his early childhood. From his vocally gifted mother, he learned to sing and picked up many songs she crafted. He began performing at Garifuna ceremonies when he was just a boy, even at the most sacred events where children were usually not allowed. At the age of 14, the young man became a respected musician with a firm grounding in Garifuna rhythms, rituals, and songs. In 2006, Aurelio, still building his musical career, became the first Garifuna congressman from his region in Honduras’ history. For this occasion, the politician’s main goal was to represent and support the Garifuna people to protect their integrity as a whole.