World Stories and Music
Doors open 8pm / MiniFest Starts at 8:30pm
$18 Advance / $20 Day of Show / $15 Students and Seniors
PASS IT AROUND - a participatory interactive World Body Music mash-up
The participatory/interactive PASS IT AROUND engages the audience in dynamic, culturally specific and collaborative Body Music styles at Ashkenaz. With IBMF house band Corposonic Trio featuring Artistic Director and Body Musician Keith Terry, bass singer Bryan Dyer, and beatboxer Steve Hogan, the event features Balinese Kecak from Dewa Berata; Stepping from Antwan Davis; South Indian Solkatu from Jim Santi Owen; Contemporary Body Music from Evie Ladin’s MoToR/dance, flamenco from Clara Rodriguez y AguaClara Flamenco, The Ranky Tanky from Rhonda Benin, and Balkan Dance from Ivan Velev and Sean Tergis.. This dynamic and experiential evening will follow the successful model Keith Terry and the IBMF have utilized in previous global Festivals in Paris, France and São Paulo, Brazil.
More info about the weekend MiniFest here: http://www.internationalbodymusicfestival.com/minifests.shtml
Come celebrate the life of Catherine Henry, local yoga teacher, and rescuer over 100 feral cats, by dancing the night away with Baraka Moon.
Doors 7:30 / Show at 8pm
$15 Advance / $18 Day of Show
BARAKA MOON is a quartet of talented musicians:
Sukhawat Ali Khan (Vocals, Harmonium), Stephen Kent (Didgeridoo, Percussion, Bass, Guitar), Anastasi Mavrides (Guitar, Bass, Bkg. Vocals) and Peter Warren (Drums).
Sukhawat Ali Khan – Baraka Moon’s charismatic and passionate vocalist draws from his luminary family’s 600 year old Pakistani singing tradition with a voice that comes straight from the heart and soars to the heavens. He can also be heard squeezing and cajoling sweet ragas and shredding blues riffs from his harmonium.
Stephen Kent – A one-man-band Didgeridoo/Percussion virtuoso, he is a globally acclaimed pioneer in bringing the ancient Aboriginal instrument to the contemporary world. With a primal shout, he conjures a deep and earthy pulse that is the vibratory core of Baraka Moon’s compelling groove engine.
Peter Warren – Our Drummer/Percussionist is responsible for the irresistible and dynamic power of Baraka Moon’s full on dance beats, with grooves honed over many years performing with African musicians and dancers in the U.S. and his native Canada.
Anastasi Mavrides – Bringing his seasoned and unique guitar work to the music, Anastasi blends shimmering chordal voicings, soaring anthemic melodies and downright super-funky rhythms. He also provides lush supporting vocals to Sukhawat’s singing.
The San Francisco Bay Area has long been fertile ground for the confluence for creative spirits and artists from all over the world to gather, exhibit and explore cross-cultural and counter-cultural ideas and bring new and fresh themes into the wider world. So it was that in the last years of the 20th century the individual members that form Baraka Moon arrived on their variously convoluted journeys from their respective homelands and began to exert their influence on the Bay Area scene and open the doors of possibility, expressing their musical forces through creative projects that have inevitably culminated in the creation of Baraka Moon.
Born into a centuries old family tradition of Indian/Pakistani classical musical culture that manifested in the 2nd half of the 20th century in the renowned vocal duo, The Ali Brothers -Sukhawat’s father, the great Ustad Salamat Ali Khan and his brother Nazakat Ali Khan –Sukhawat Ali Khan grew, along with his brothers including Shafqat Ali Khan, himself a contemporary giant of Indo/Pakistani classical music, and sister Riffat Sultana, the first female vocalist in the family to gain public acclaim, Sukhawat’s career flourished when both he and his younger sister arrived in the SF Bay Area in the mid 1990’s. Together with Riffat’s husband, guitarist/MD Richard Michos they formed The Ali Khan Band performing in the Bay Area and beyond and releasing 2 recordings on the SF based label, City of Tribes (which also featured much of Stephen Kent’s 1990’s catalog) Changing their name to Shabaz the siblings continued to plow the multicultural groove connections into the new century touring and producing a self titled CD on Miles Copeland’s Mondo Melodia label before parting ways to pursue new directions. For Sukhawat these included appearances at the 60th anniversary of the United Nations in San Francisco, where he performed with a multi-cultural ensemble to a luminary gathering of global leaders, both from both the political and cultural worlds (eg Jane Goodall and Mikhail Gorbachev) collaborations with DJ Cheb i Sabbah on his first release, “Sri Durga” (Six Degrees Records), Soundtrack work on the Disney Film, Hidalgo (directed by), LA based Sufi band leader, Yuval Ron and many other musical outings. Sukhawat released his 1st solo CD “Shukriya” (Jah Nur Records).
The germinating seeds of Baraka Moon were sown when Stephen Kent formed a group of musicians to accompany the Rumi scholar and translator Coleman Barks in a celebration of the 800th anniversary of Jalalludin Rumi’s birth and invited Sukhawat Ali Khan and percussionist Geoffrey Gordon to join him. The first edition of Baraka Moon, a trio, was formed on the night of a blood moon eclipse soon afterwards in Feb 2008.
To this point Stephen had traveled a wide ranging and diverse creative path from his upbringing in Uganda and rural UK, setting the tone for a deep and abiding interest in world cultures and arriving in the Bay Area in 1991. After early years in the British New Wave avant-garde scene with Furious Pig (Rough Trade 1980) he traveled to Australia as Music Director of Australia’s contemporary national circus, Circus Oz (1981-83). With the Oz collective’s concerns for Aboriginal land rights and social justice this inevitably led to SK’s interest in the didgeridoo. Having grown up a classical brass player he adapted circular-breathing techniques to brass in the Oz show and composed new music, making a cultural bridge that set him on the journey of pioneering the ancient Aboriginal horn into contemporary music, which continues to this day. In late 1987 after 7 years in new circus now back in Europe his evolution on the didge manifested in soundtracks for contemporary dance companies in Barcelona and the formation of the band Lights in a Fat City, first appearing in the streets and markets of London and other European cities in the mid 80’s. LIAFC was the first ‘Didgeridoo-oriented’ band to tour Europe and North America and their LP, “Somewhere”(These Records 1988) caused them to tour widely and perform musically diverse festivals including WOMAD, Zurich & Leipzig Jazz festivals (Oct.1989), New Musique Actuelles Montreal, Winnipeg Folk Festival & The New York International Arts Festival when he arrived in the USA in 1991 to stay. San Francisco provided a dynamic creative base and there began a period in which Kent formed the band Trance Mission, joined the Beasts of Paradise (also with Geoffrey Gordon) & released a series of over 20 recordings featuring the didgeridoo in both group and solo contexts with cross cultural collaborations in concert including projects with Airto Moreira, Zakir Hussain, Glen Velez, R.Carlos Nakai, the Tuvan throat-singing group Chirgilchin, Habib Koite and Doors drummer John Densmore among many others. He also met Sukhawat Ali Khan and worked on sessions for the Ali Khan Band and recorded with Producer Richard Michos on a “chillout” CD featuring Ustad Salamat Ali Khan. Since 1995 he has hosted and produces a popular weekly “Music of the World ” radio show on KPFA FM. He has played in 5 continents to great acclaim and continues to perform all over the world.
Anastasi Mavrides cut his musical teeth playing with soul and rock bands in the Philadelphia area. His playing later came to the attention of the Beach Boys’ Mike Love, who heard him performing in Europe and invited him to come on tour with the band as guitarist. Since that time, Anastasi has become a musician, composer and producer of wide-ranging styles and media. He’s produced albums of instrumental music for the Real Music label, as well as creating the award-winning children’s series, The Classical Child®, a whimsical collection of eight classical music CDs for kids (www.classicalchild.com). In addition, he has scored music for national broadcast commercials, as well as film shorts. Over the last few years, ‘Stas’ has been music director and composer for the regional cult musical, Zen Boyfriends, as well as producer for The Marin Project concert and album, benefiting Bay Area homelessness.
Anastasi entered the Baraka Moon orbit via his musical involvement with their common collaborator, Geoffrey Gordon. It was during his years performing in Gordon’s Indian-style, raga-based sacred music ensemble that Anastasi met Sukhawat, and the three performed together at one of the Bay Area’s annual Himalayan Festivals. In 2010 – together with drummer, Peter Warren – Anastasi and Sukhawat formed JI, a stylistic pre-cursor to the funky and driving present-day Baraka Moon band. Peter and Anastasi brought with them their West African and Malian rhythms and influences from the group they co-created, called MAKURU, which found them playing with an array of outstanding Senagalese, Ginean and Malian musicians (Bolo Kade, Karamo Susso, Ousseynou Kouyate and others.) It was sometime after the sad and untimely passing of Geoffrey that Sukhawat, Anastasi, Peter and Stephen decided to join musical forces in a way that, looking back now, seems to have been inevitable.
At a young age drummer Peter Warren was influenced by the ‘art rock’ of the 70’s. Inspired by Peter Gabriel and his Real World label, at the age of 20 he became immersed in world music, meeting many African and Indian musicians in Toronto, with whom he started to form world-drumming and chant groups.
In the 1990’s, Peter created the “Real Tribal” drum show, which he took to nightclubs, raves and festivals on Canadian music scene. The lineup featured master drummers from West Africa, Brazil, Japan and India in performances that seem to magically bring audience and musicians together in joyful, ecstatic dancing and singing. It was this spirit of bringing people together with the power of rhythm and dance that led Peter to the San Francisco Bay Area to create Makuru and JI (with Anastasi). Later, when they both teamed up with Sukhawat and Stephen, Peter brought the core of his drum and dance-infused energy with him into Baraka Moon.
NEPTUNE (Beat Church)
For over 30 years Neptune has been a professional DJ and avid collector of tunes across the entire musical spectrum, compiling one of the most vast and eclectic collections in the world.
He has mastered the art of reading and tapping in to the dynamic of a room and crowd while reaching into his musical pallet to play the perfect music for the moment. With no limits on style or genre, he eloquently, creatively and seamlessly transitions between tracks.
On an even deeper level, as a Sonic Shaman, Neptune continues to develop the art of transforming people through Music as he guides the dancer into their Bodies, awakening Emotions, and calling upon their Spirits. Through the Magic and Mystery of a Sonic Journey, he helps to create a Musical Map of the Soul’s Evolution.
He is a rotating resident DJ for most of the Ecstatic Dances throughout California & you can see him on the lineups for many of the conscious dance events & festivals throughout the west coast & abroad.
Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00 pm
FREE EVENT as part of the Berkeley World Music Festival
The Saturday night party at Ashkenaz, 1317 San Pablo Avenue, celebrates the Festival’s 15th anniversary with an all-free cross-cultural concert performance of percussion of the feet and body from the world’s great music traditions from Africa, Spain and the Americas.
Followed by a world dance party with DJ Corey Mason of World One Radio!
Yaelisa of Caminos Flamencos, Mussell Rock clogging, Chhandam School of Kathak, Chinyakare Ensemble, and Wang Dang Doodle (Keith Terry and Linda Tillery)
The Chinyakare Ensemble is a family of musicians, dancers and teachers committed to preserving and sharing traditional Zimbabwean culture, and promoting community building and education through music and dance. Chinyakare presents an electrifying performance of the traditional dance, music, and culture of Zimbabwe and Southern Africa. The music (played on mbira, ngoma, marimbas, and chipendani), songs, and dance weave colorful stories that show scenes from everyday life. Chinyakare provides audiences with a glimpse of the beauty, excitement, and spirit of traditional African dance and song.
Mhande [mahn-deh] or Amajukwa [ah-mah-joo-kwah] Mhande or amajukwa is a dance to petition the ancestral spirits for plenty of rain. This usually takes place in October and November, the season of planting and the first rains of the growing season. Accompanied by ngoma, hosho and singing, dancers beat out fast-paced rhythms on the ground with magavhu (leg rattles) attached to their legs.
Chinyambera [chin-yahm-behr-uh] Chinyambera is a hunter’s dance to bring families and communities together to dance, pray, honor, and give thanks and respect to the hunters, animals, and Mother Nature. When the hunters leave home, they do not know how far they will have to go or how long they will have to hunt before they can find something to bring back to their families, but they never give up. The dance reflects strong energies and changes of movements in a fast, slow, explosive and quiet pace that reminds us all that we live in a prayer.
Caminos Flamencos is a not-for-profit organization based in San Francisco, California, dedicated to bringing high quality arts and educational programs to diverse audiences throughout the United States. During the last twelve years,
Artistic Director, Yaelisa has spent extensive periods of time living and performing in Spain, presenting her choreography there and in the U.S. Her choreographies have been commissoned by several modern dance companies, including John Malashock & Company, Rose Polsky and Collage Dance Theatre. In 1995 she was one of 11 choreographers in Spain invited to present a piece at the prestigious Certamen de Coreografia in Madrid, and the only American choreographer chosen among them. In 1996 she returned to the U.S. where she continues to choreograph, develop and train dancers for her company. Creating innovative theatrical presentations has established her as a choreographer of merit; she is the recipient of an Emmy Award for Choreography in 1993 for the PBS program, "Desde Cadiz a Sevilla," and a Choreography Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1996.
Mussell Rock Cloggers are a clogging performance group in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The Chhandam School of Kathak Dance, founded and directed by internationally renowned Kathak master Pandit Chitresh Das and home to the Chitresh Das Dance Company, is the largest Indian classical dance institution in North America.
Dang Doodle -
Keith Terry and Linda Tillery
Linda Tillery and the The Cultural Heritage Choir is a Grammy © nominated, percussion driven, vocal ensemble whose mission is to help preserve and share the musical traditions of the African Diaspora with particular emphasis on music of the Southern United States. We connect this music to its West African and Caribbean origins.
Since 1992, Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir, have become world renowned for their breathtaking performances and commitment to the authenticity of African-American roots music and music from the African diaspora. Their vocals are soulful and germane, their rhythms are a fusion of southern grit and carribean heat!!
The groups first collaboration with veteran performers Taj Mahal and Eric Bibb titled "Shakin' A Tailfeather," was nominated for a Grammy  and their second collaborative effort "Hippity Hop," was awarded a Parents Choice Award (2000). The group's (2003) recording titled "Say Yo' Business", was nominated for a California Music Award.
If you would like to delve deeply into the diverse resources of African-American roots music and learn the tradition of call and response and the rhythms that drive this music and give it vitality, the Cultural Heritage Choir will teach you how to approach singing with the ears, eyes and the heart. Learn to sing Work Songs, Spirituals, Children's Play Songs, Field Hollers, Moans, Ring Shouts, Plantation Dances and a little bit of Bomba!
The cultural heritage choir is Linda Tillery, Rhonda Benin, Tammi Brown, Bryan Dyer, Zoe Ellis and Javier Navarrette.
- Using any surface for its rhythmic possibilities, Keith Terry "claps his hands, rubs his palms, finger-pops, stamps his feet, brushes his soles, slaps his butt and belly, pops his cheek, whomps his chest, skips and slides, sings and babbles and coughs, building his music out of a surprisingly varied register of sounds and clever rhythmic variations." — Village Voice
Keith Terry is a percussionist/rhythm dancer whose work encompasses a number of allied performance disciplines — music, dance, theater, performance art — which he brings together to create an artistic vision that defies easy categorization. As a self-defined "Body Musician," Keith uses the oldest musical instrument in the world — the human body (his own) — as the basis for exploring, blending and bending traditional and contemporary rhythmic, percussive and movement possibilities.
Trained as a percussionist, Keith was the drummer for the original Jazz Tap Ensemble when he found his drum patterns becoming hand claps and foot steps. Soon percussion became dance, his body his instrument, and his own style of body music emerged. Keith's influences range from Japanese Taiko and Balinese Gamelan to North American rhythm tap and Ethiopian armpit music.
...a crossing of cultures, a blurring of boundaries at its most sensitive, most humanistic, and most magical. — National Public Radio
Keith Terry is probably best known for his solo works, which toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Asia — from the Serious Fun Festival at Lincoln Center, the Bumbershoot Festival at the Seattle Opera House, the Colorado Dance Festival, New York's Dance Theater Workshop and Wolftrap to the American Center in Paris, the Bali Arts Festival, the Regency in Hong Kong, the Vienna Dance Festival, the Budapest Spring Festival and the Paradiso van Slag World Drum Festival in Amsterdam.
Doors at 8:30 pm; Show at 9:00 pm
Tickets are $12 Advance / $15 at the Door
Formed on the eclipse of the full moon in 2008, Baraka Moon returns to our stage with its ecstatic global trance grooves for achieving a higher consciousness through listening, dancing, or any other means. They will be featuring music to party to as they celebrate the release of their CD “Wind Horse.” Bringing together global citizens with origins in Pakistan, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the U.S., the quartet’s all-original music ignites from ancient Qawaali Sufi trance songs, Indian classical ragas, Middle Eastern overtones, and African drums and percussion, plus the Australian Aboriginal didjeridu. The musicians bring those influences into an uplifting and resonant whole, which the bandmembers proclaim is, “spiritually charged and soulful dance music with a positive message of peace for the whole world! Even the Gods are dancing and smiling. Open your soul, sing your heart. Baraka Moon at your service!” “Baraka” is the Sufi word for blessing, a quality that permeates the group’s music.
Vocalist Sukhawat Ali Khan fronts Baraka Moon, performing on the harmonium and drawing from his luminary family’s 600 years of vocal tradition with a voice that comes straight from the heart, while one-man-band didjeridu virtuoso Stephen Kent, a globally acclaimed pioneer in bringing the ancient Aboriginal instrument to the contemporary world, plows a deep earthy groove and shakes it down together with Peter Warren's driving drums, as Anastasi Mavrides paints singing constellations with his shimmering guitar.
Doors at 8:30 pm; Show at 9:00 pm
Tickets are $20 Advance / $25 at the Door
*ticket price increased since the printed calendar,
due to the addition of a second band*
This special shared evening brings together two uplifting bands, both of whom will nourish you in spirit and body. MaMuse will play a stirring set of folk/gospel/harmony inspiration, then Fula Brothers will light the dancefloor with a West African-California Groove experience. Expect a full heart, a lively community of dancers, and collaborative magic when the bands play together.
Fula Brothers is the high spirited meeting of three seasoned touring performers - each of whom has spent decades pursuing the shared heartbeat in music from around the globe. Here is a history filled with inter-continental collaborations and colorful apprenticeships, from West Africa and Scotland to Haiti and the US. Each of these cultural threads stirs a unique part of our universal human experience, and Mamadou, Walter, and Kendrick weave them into a rich tapestry of sound and rhythm. The result? An ecstatic and intricate groove-based dialogue which the heart - and the feet - cannot resist.
With deep roots in the folk and gospel traditions, and their hearts in the present, MaMuse (Sarah Nutting and Karisha Longaker) create uplifting music for the next seven generations to thrive on. Interweaving brilliant and haunting harmony with lyrics born of honed emotional intelligence, MaMuse invokes a musical presence that inspires the opening of the heart. Playing a family of varied acoustic instruments including upright bass, guitar, mandolins, ukulele, and flutes, these two powerful women embody a love for all of life. The synergy that is created through this musical connection is palpable and truly moving to witness.
Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00pm
Tickets are $20 Advance / $25 at the Door
Formed in 1988, Celtic rock band Tempest has recorded 15 CDs and played more than 2,000 shows in near and faraway places, especially at Celtic fests from Philadelphia to the Winnipeg Folk Festival, Cropredy in England, and Denmark’s Skagen Festival. For a while the band even hosted its own Karflukifest with like-minded bands from around the world. Tempest fuses Irish reels, Scottish ballads, Norwegian influences, and other world music elements in its high-energy concerts. The new CD, “The Tracks We Leave,” is officially released Feb. 24 on Magna Carta Records. The title is inspired by a Dakota Sioux proverb: “We will be known forever by the tracks we leave,” a reference to the environmental, spiritual, and musical imprints we leave upon the world we live in.
Hailing from Oslo, Norway, Tempest’s founder and lead singer-electric mandolinist Lief Sorbye is recognized as a driving force in the modern folk-rock movement. He started Tempest after nine years in pioneering Celtic folk band Golden Bough. San Francisco fiddler Kathy Buys brings her international award-winning playing to the Tempest stage. Born in Colorado and brought up in small-town Missouri, Gregory Jones is the latest in a long line of Tempest guitar greats. His fiery licks and hard-rocking approach to the instrument, combined with his experience and understanding of Celtic music, have made him a favorite with fans new and old alike. Cuban-born drummer Adolfo Lazo, an original Tempest member, colors the band’s sound with inventive rhythms and rock-steady drumming. The newest member is Josh Fossgreen, an exceptional young talent whose innovative bass textures add a rich dimension to the Tempest soundscape.
Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00 pm
Tickets are $20 Advance / $25 at the Door
Maestra Series Packages $48 - $150
This group of superstar Maestras (and one spectacular Maestro de Bajo), led by the great Jackeline Rago on Venezuelan Cuatro and Bandola, features Donna Viscuso on Flute, Dan Feiszli on Bass and the one and only Michaelle Goerlitz on Percussion.
Hailed for its spirited performances and fascinating fusion of Venezuelan folk music with adventurous jazz explorations,The VNote Ensemble gives voice to the hidden treasure of Venezuelan music. Original compositions, keen arrangements and great musicianship blend together to deliver a unique musical sound.
Special Guests for tonight's performance include Anna Marai Violich on vocals, and Mara Fox on Trombone.
Bring your dancing shoes!!
Doors at 6:00 pm; Show at 7:00 pm
Tickets are $10 Advance / $10-$15 Sliding Scale at the Door
The Creative World Ensemble was started at SF State in 1998 by Dr. Hafez Modirzadeh as a way to give musicians of all the world's traditions a space to create together. Over the past twenty years, the number of brilliant, and now notable, musical artists who have passed through this ensemble are too many to name here. Modirzadeh returns to Ashkenaz this February 25th, 2018, to direct a spontaneous reunion of past/present members and guest artists of the Creative World Ensemble, continuing to ignite the collaborative spark of peace and purpose through sound.
Album release party for their new album "Ch'aska Punku"
Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00 pm
Tickets are $18 Advance / $20 at the Door
The Sāmi Brothers are a spiritual and musical duo devoted to offering uplifting and inspiring ceremonial music. Madhu Anziani and Alexander Kugler are the sanctioned Medicine Song Carriers for the Pachakuti Mesa Tradition of Cross Cultural Shamanism, bridging ancient Peruvian indigenous wisdom with contemporary musical composition. The songs they offer have been inspired by the teachings of don Oscar Miro-Quesada, a high ritualist, Kamasquero Curandero, from Peru.
Their music has been featured in the documentary film, The Roots Awaken, and they have released two studio albums, Ch'aska Punku (Star Portal) and Nuna Kallpa (Soul Power). Listening to these albums you will hear songs in English, Spanish, Hebrew, Tibetan and Quechua (a language indigenous to Peru). Using words from these living languages, the Sāmi Brothers write songs to enliven the ceremonies they hold in Berkeley, California, as well as to musically support the larger, global Pachakuti Mesa community.
Alexander weaves his 15 years as an opera singer and cantorial soloist into his teaching and facilitated community prayer. Alexander also leads people in group singing workshops to help liberate their voice and is passionate about his Men's Evolutionary Coaching work at ManhoodEmbodied.com.
Madhu is a musician, ceremonialist and sound healing artist. Through the journey of recovering from being paralyzed Madhu discovered sound as a healing modality and regularly shares his gifts in workshops and private sessions. Check out his latest offerings at Patreon.com/MadhuMuisic
Lauren and Melita are Bay Area songstresses that both in their own right have for many years written songs that celebrate the sacred, the magical and the beloved. They also both tend toward using songs as tools of healing toward the broken and the void.
For the past couple years they have collaborated in weaving their songs and their voices together to bring forth an experience that is both gentle and powerful, soothing as well as awakening. Blending harmonies with meaningful lyrics, they create an inclusive field of prayer and depth as well as lightness and playfulness.
Lauren Arrow: www.processsing.com
Melita : www.melitamusic.com
Doors at 7:00 pm; Dance lesson with Nadav Nur and Jerry Duke at 7:30 pm
Show at 8:00 pm
Tickets are $12
Presented by Balkan Dance Cabal
Zabava!, whose name means “party,” plays energetic, soulful, and rhythmically dazzling music, from the center of the dance floor, in the Bulgarian, Greek, Macedonian, and Romani traditions. This group of superb musicians recreates the vibrant interplay of traditional music and dance from these cultural crossroads. Zabava! features Bill Cope (gaida, bouzouki, tambura, accordion, vocals), Michele Simon (vocals, tapan, hand drum), Tom Farris (tambura, guitar, hand drum) and special guest Juliana Graffagna (vocals, tambura).
Doors at 7:30 pm; show at 8:00 pm
Tickets are $17 Advance /
$20 at the Door /
Show will start with a short 5-7 minute spiritual ceremony with acoustic drumming. Followed by set by the Bay Area Steel Drum ensemble, including Jeff Narrell. Some of the Bay Area’s top Caribbean musicians will come together in a “Koudmen” for a concert to benefit Hurricane disaster relief efforts on the island of Dominica. Led by legendary Caribbean Poet and Artist, RasMo of Dominica, the group will also include guitarist Bernard George, drummer Clayton Hazel, keyboardists Bert Thomas and Dilly George, all hailing from Dominica. Joining them will be Harry Best of St. Lucia and Andrew Charles of Barbados. ‘Koudmen’ is a practice of communal cooperation that is part of Caribbean culture especially following disasters such as hurricanes. People pool their resources and take turns rebuilding and repairing individual damaged properties and other belongings. Attendees can expect to be moved and delighted by the group’s renditions of infectious ‘Zouk’ music that is indigenous to the French Kweyol speaking islands such as Dominica, St. Lucia, Martinique, Haiti, Guadeloupe, St. Martin and Cayenne. The evening will open with a set from a collective of Bay Area Caribbean steeldrum pan players including Sharon Mapp, Paul Snagg, Peter Best, Olison Baptiste and others. Come dance and support the people of Dominica, and especially the local artists who have been devastated by hurricane Maria.
A native of the Caribbean island nation St. Lucia, Harry Best has been one of the Bay Area stars of steel pan music since moving to El Sobrante, where in recent years he has taught music and led his band Shabang. Best is also a seasoned songwriter whose music has had more notoriety than his steel drum band. He has written hit songs for artists such as the late Caribbean international superstar Arrow. His lyrics are arresting, his melodies sweet, and the rhythms infectious. But ask Harry and he’ll tell you that the real secret to Shabang’s charm is their fun-loving approach to their performances.
Doors at 8:30 pm; Show at 9:00 pm
Tickets are $20 Advance / $22 Day of Show
The KTO Project is a musical passport of songs created with the intention of healing and celebration.
This concert will be a reflection of the multitude of musical influences, including Cuba, Mexico and Zimbabwe, whose songs are created to uplift us, sustain us and give us cause for celebration. Bring your dancing shoes!
Despite the political climate, the bans, the bombs and the disregard for those who do not fit in the privileged minority, we the people must continue to do our work. We need the arts now, more than ever. Singing and dancing together continues to affirm the statement "We are still here!" and provides inspiration to collectively create solutions for our future.
This is where we can meet - not on the internet, but in person, where we can experience the call and response of the music and create a joyful experience together.
Featuring Kelly Takunda Orphan on lead vocals & various instruments with:
Ayla Davila: Bass
Bob Crawford: Keys
Colin Douglas: Drums
Jose Roberto Hernandez: Guitar & Vocals
Amber Hines: Vocals & Percussion
Fernanda Bustamante: Vocals
Tony Peebles: Saxophones
Bill Ortiz: Trumpet
with Luis Morales-Guidos: Vocals
...and featuring Yismari Ramos Tellez and Cali Dance Company!
Bay Area native Kelly Takunda Orphan has been singing, dancing, playing percussion, writing, arranging and band leading since the 90's, often collaborating with amazing artists from Zimbabwe, Mexico, Cuba and more. Their music is personal and political, soulful and spiritual – and it makes you want to dance.
Spirit Calling: The KTO Project
Eastern Armenian Music
Come enjoy this festive day as we transform Ashkenaz into an exotic marketplace!
Ashkenaz’s Holiday Bazaar reflects our community center’s global perspective, exhibiting arts and crafts that are handmade, sustainable, recycled, related to music and dance themes, or representing cultures and traditions from around the world. Items to be offered include pottery, jewelry, handmade and ethnic clothing, leather crafts, African masks and baskets, books, photography, and more. Most are priced at $25 or less.
Admission is free! The event also features live acoustic music, beer & wine, hot & cold beverages, and organic vegetarian food from our café. This year, we will also feature workshops in maraca-making, self-healing with acupressure, art, and drumming.
Support local artisans this holiday season, and your home for world music and dance!
11am: Shaker-Maker Workshop
Dia de los Muertos Family Celebration
Cascada de Flores
"The Tree and The Donkey who Love to Sing"
Mexican Son Dance Lesson with Lolis García y Nydia Algazzali Gonzalez at 4:30 pm
Family Fandango Jarocho at 5:00 pm
plus Ashkenaz Community Altar
Doors at 3:00 pm
Show at 3:30 pm
$12 Adults/$6 Kids
Cascada de Flores
The core members of Cascada de Flores have been reimagining Mexican tradition for years. After falling for Mexican music as a young woman, singer Arwen Lawrence toured with Grammy-winning L.A. mariachi heavyweights Los Camperos de Nati Cano, an apprenticeship that honed her skills and deepened her love for Mexico’s musical language. Jorge Liceaga grew up in Mexico City, buying his first guitar with the money he’d earned shining shoes. Self-taught, he was later mentored by local legend Leonardo “El León” Salas, a transplant from Yucatan, who taught Jorge to “guasanguearla” (play with that special Yucatecan swing).
Lawrence and Liceaga founded Cascada de Flores in San Francisco in 1999. They began by journeying into the hidden corners of Mexico, seeking the real stories of that hugely diverse country. Inspired by the fact that even as deep as its diversity goes, Mexico has a continuous love affair with foreign cultural phenomenon and incorporates them as if they were its own, the ensemble has spent the ensuing years swimming in a magical place somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea where rancheras, boleros, sones, and guarachas from Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Colombia meet.
Cascada de Flores has now recorded four albums, collaborated in numerous projects including theater and cinema, and toured several areas of the U.S. and Mexico. The band is now a phenomenon, cherished by the Latinos who hear them and opening the minds of their non-Latino fans. Opening minds and hearts to the real stories of Mexico and Latin America has become Cascada de Flores’ unofficial mission. Firmly committed to cultural education as well as music, they present a bilingual music and dance program that has reached over 500,000 children in over 1,000 schools and libraries across the western U.S. Close to home, they present ongoing bilingual classes and special workshops for children and families focused on traditional Latin American folk songs and Mexican traditional music and dance.