Free tickets for Playing for Change Concert tomorrow

I have tickets to give away for the Playing for Change concert this Saturday at 7pm at Old Town School (here is the event page).

To enter for a chance to win one pair of complimentary tickets, leave a comment below. The winner will be selected randomly and notified via email tomorrow June 7, 2014 in the morning

Playing for Change is a multimedia music project that seeks to inspire, connect, and bring peace to the world through music. Mark Johnson, the founder of the Playing for Change Movement was kind enough to answer some of my questions about it.

What is Playing for Change?

Playing For Change is a Movement uniting people all over the world through music.

A small crew travel the globe recording and filming musicians live outside creating Songs around the world such as “Stand By Me” and “What’s going on”.  As we travel we meet different musicians and assemble some of the best to be a part of the Playing For Change Band, a group of 10 or so musicians from 8 different countries who bring the power of music live to the stage and create a world with the audience where we are going to make it as a human race.  Playing For Change also created a separate Non-profit titled the PFC Foundation establishing music schools around the world in the communities we had met while traveling and recording.  Today there are 9 music programs in 6 countries.

 

How was this collective created?

The PFC Band was initially created to perform a benefit concert to fund and support the PFC Foundation’s first music school in Gugulethu, South Africa in 2009.  The idea was to combine on the stage many of the musicians from our songs around the world who had never met in person.  They had only met through the videos so when they finally got together on the stage there was so much love and talent we knew this musical group was destined to play together all over the world.  Five years later, the concerts are on Fire and audiences everywhere get to join in the global family through the music.

 

Any famous musicians involved in this collective?

As the project has grown more and more musicians have joined in, including Keith Richards, Bono, Sara Bareilles, Stephen and Ziggy Marley, Keb’ Mo’ and Jackson Browne and the list keeps on growing…

 

 

Any touching stories or outcomes as a result of this collaboration?

One great story features PFC Band member / singer Titi Tsira.  She is from Gugulethu Township, a very poor area outside of Capetown, South Africa.  While we where there to open the very first PFC Music school, Titi came to perform and I remember hearing her voice and falling out of my chair.  Titi reminded me of an South African Aretha Franklin!! She has been in the PFC Band ever since and she is also featured on our upcoming PFC 3 CD/DVD Songs around the world singing with Keith Richards and Sara Bareilles.  Titi has come a long way from home to bring the spirit and love of South Africa to the world.

 

Why should we go see your show?

People should come to see the PFC Band so they can join the world wide family using music to connect hearts across the globe. The band is filled with so much talent and soul and the concerts mix Blues, soul, Reggae, Salsa and Zulu Funk together into a performance you will never forget!! There is so much talent in this band from so many different countries and cultures and they unite to create something new and powerful, music for the poeple.

One Love, Mark Johnson

 

Mark Johnson, the founder of Play for Change, in Congo
Mark Johnson, the founder of Play for Change, in Congo

Win Tickets to CumbiaSazo Party this May 31st

I have two tickets to give away to the CumbiaSazo dance party happening this Saturday May 31st! If you don’t know what CumbiaSazo or cumbia is, keep reading. David Itzi Nallah from CumbiaSazo explains it all. This party seems to be ideal for global urban explorers!
To enter for a chance to win a pair of complimentary tickets, leave a comment below. The winner will be selected randomly and notified via email on May 30, 2014.

What is CumbiaSazo?

CumbiaSazo is a DIO (do-it-ourselves) party that brings together various DJs, bands, and visual artists for a night of dancing & surprises. Only happening a few times a year and usually in different locations, the theme is broadly that of being future-rooted, or of looking back while looking forward, and I think offers something unique for a generation of partygoers who want to honor their immigrant roots while forging some kind of new identity in progress. Musically, the party represents a newer Chicago local/global flavor that digresses from the old term of ‘world music’ and instead embraces an almost rave-spirited mixing and mashing of global rhythms that’s fit for a club. Additionally we try to fundraise for local organizations doing good work and so it’s a whole melting pot of communities joining in to create a vibe. Diverse art for diverse people is something we think is hard to find in a party space (especially in a mainstream club environment), so the party is something our collective experiments with by adding in whatever elements people think would be fun- music, bands, art, decor, puppets, piñatas, food, etc.

What is cumbia?

Cumbia is a music genre and family of rhythms popular throughout Latin America that originated in Colombia & Panama during 17th century slavery as a courtship/communicative dance and was born of a cultural mix of black and indigenous backgrounds. Still a peoples music and not quite mainstream, the rhythm has the syncopated feel of a heartbeat, which makes for great bodily dancing, and could be considered a backbone rhythm of Latin America while still being wholly connected to the tree trunk that is African sound from which all other music genres come. While the traditional instruments and influences have morphed and melded across the American continents over time, what’s intriguing to us is that today’s young people of Colombia and connected countries worldwide are re-mixing and re-intepreting cumbia as a way of breathing life into their cultural heritage while having some fun.

Why should we go see your show this May 31st?

Because we work so hard to put it together! Hehe. No really, I would say if you’re curious about new music, enjoy shaking your hips on a dance floor rather than pumping your fists, or consider yourself a ‘global citizen’ in any way, this party’s probably for you.

Why did you choose Thalia Hall in Pilsen for this party?

It was a difficult decision actually. After being underground the past years and even throwing a large warehouse party in Pilsen with it last year, we decided to go above-ground and find legit venues this season. On the one hand at 1200 capacity, Thalia Hall is a space in the city that could accommodate the rising popularity of the party where there are so few affordable options. It’s also in our dear Pilsen neighborhood where many of our organizers live and play, so it’s home and makes sense. However, with its re-opening in the context of a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood I think everyone is wondering what is going to come out of its re-introduction on 18th street. Undoubtedly, the space is mysterious and beautiful and will bring in some internationally-renowned talent to Pilsen’s doorsteps, which can be good, but no one knows what it will look like exactly. Rather than shy from that unknown and bring our beloved party to north-side neighborhoods where the big venues live, we wanted the challenge of introducing people to Thalia Hall for the first time and thought that having this many people, mostly from the area, under this roof, would forge a feeling that hasn’t been felt here in a while. That’s the intention at least and we’re excited to find out what that feeling will be.

The whole music line up and bios are here

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Get an Exclusive Preview of Studio Mangiameli Flamenco Show!

Do you like flamenco or are interested in exploring this dance form? Then take advantage of this opportunity! Studio Mangiameli is inviting four of you, Chicago Urbanite followers,   to attend a final dress rehearsal and get a  sneak peek of its upcoming annual student showcase on Thursday May 29th.  The show is titled Tides and it is an exploration of the moments that leave indelible marks on human lives and alter the landscape of identity. Tides features original live music from some of Chicago’s most recognized flamenco and world music players, including Carlo Basile (Las Guitarras De España), guitarist Diego Alonso and percussionist Bob Garrett, soon to appear in Sting’s new musical, The Last Ship. World-renowned flamenco singer Vicente “El Cartucho” Griego will be this year’s very special guest.

Just leave a comment down below and I will include your name on the guest list. In the meantime, here is a short but insightful interview with Chiara Mangiameli, the director and creator of Tides, about her life-changing experience with flamenco and her inspiration for this show.

 

Please tell us about your background and how you got involved with flamenco.

I have a strong background in theater and additionally I dabbled in various forms of dance throughout my youth and adulthood, from ballet to tap to African dance. Nothing stuck until I found flamenco. The truth is the Gypsy Kings were what got me interested in the more traditional Andalusian art form. I fell in love with the percussive sound of the guitar and the unmistakable melisma of the voice. Ironically I knew nothing of the dance form but once I took my first class, I never looked back and eventually ended up in Seville several times over the course of a few years to immerse myself completely in the music and culture. The inherently dramatic and individualistic emphasis of this dance style felt like a perfect fit.

 

This production is inspired by stories of critical moments in your students’ lives. Can you recall one story in particular that specially touched you?

First, let me say that I tend to draw inspiration from my students because I’m always amazed and touched by the amount of resilience and dedication they have. Everyone that so generously shared a piece of their private life with me had a very moving and genuine story. I can’t say that there was one in particular that touched me more than another, simply because there are aspects of all the stories that I found myself relating to, whether as a dancer, an immigrant, a daughter, a woman.

 

Why should we go see your show? What can we expect?

I strive to present dance and particularly flamenco, in a context that illustrates more than a choreography or a series of movements accompanied by music. I’m interested in why we choose to dance, what makes us vulnerable, transparent, what allows us to relate to each other as human beings. You can expect beautiful original music by my incredible collaborators, a special guest flamenco singer who will knock your socks off, and forty plus dancers that have been looking forward to this show for eight months and have a clear voice and point of view about their place on that stage. My hope is that the audience will be able to relate to some of the stories they hear because at the end of the day, we all have our struggles with navigating the changing tides.

 

Performances will take place at the Vittum Theater, 1012 N Noble Street in Chicago, on May 30 and May 31st at 7:30PM CST and on June 1st at 4:30PM CST. Tickets are $25 and $15 for children ages 12 and under. Parking is free.

Get Tickets

Tides Show Studio Mangiameli

 

 

Win Tickets to Caravanserai Dance Party

CARAVANSERAI

This World Music dance party derives its name from Caravan Serai, an ancient  roadside motel that gave weary Silk Road travelers a safe place to park their camels, count their furs, and maybe even sip on some wine. Hot food, hand-washing stations, and live music were a must. Luckily for us, sans camels, Chicago has all those things, without having to experience the austere life styles of the vagabonds of yore. So, grab your headdress and gold coins, lace up your leggings, and join a night of music and dance that celebrates the weary traveler in all of us! The dance party lineup includes gypsy surf band Lamajamal, raucous brass/reed sextet Black Bear Combo, abstract international spinmeister DJ Warp and Middle Eastern dance performer Erika Ochoa, among others.

Sunday January 20  from 7  to 11 pm
1200 W. Randolph, Chicago, Illinois 60607
$12

For tickets please visit http://bit.ly/WwS7x1

Chicago Urbanite followers can get free tickets for this party. In other to participate in the drawing, do the following:

  • Enter your email on the upper right side of this page to subscribe to Chicago Urbanite’s blog.
  • Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @urbclau
  • Leave a comment on this post.

The drawing will be this Saturday January 19 so get your comments in quick. GOOD LUCK!

Win Free Tickets to Femi Kuti Concert on January 21st!

Femi Kuti

Monday January 21, 2013 9:30 PM

18 & Over. Valid State/Federal ID required for entry.
Doors open at 8:00 PM.
Also appearing: DJ Warp.

Advanced tickets: $24

Metro Chicago

3730 N. Clark St., Chicago, Illinois 60613

View Map · Get Directions

Femi Kuti is a Nigerian musician and the eldest son of afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti.  Anyone familiar with Femi’s career quickly realizes that he is simply not content coasting in the shadows. This refusal to fade from the limelight pushed him to break free from his father’s legacy and form his own band, The Positive Force. Femi Kuti became an artist in his own right in the ‘90s with his soulful delivery and balance between world influences and enthralling delivery.

A prominent member of the world music scene since the early ‘80s, Femi Kuti has melded afrobeat and jazz with soulful his unique sound embellishments unlike any other figure in world music. Inheriting his father’s social conscience, Femi Kuti is a social and political activist, as well. More than a musician or artist, Femi Kuti has become the artistic embodiment of his home country in the fullest sense.

Femi Kuti & The Positive Force will be appearing at Metro on January 21 and we have tickets to give away!

It couldn’t be easier to enter:

  • Enter your email on the upper right side of this page to subscribe to our blog or join our mailing list!
  • Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @urbclau
  • Leave a comment on this post and  tell us which is your favorite Femi Kuti’s song or why do you like his music.

GOOD LUCK!

Win tickets to Ethiopian-Persian-Gypsy concert!

Venue: Burlington (3425 West Fullerton Ave, Chicago, IL 60647 )

Date: Sunday December 16, 2012 8pm – 11:30pm

Price: $12

Tigist Bekele was a well­ known rising star at her home country Ethiopia who also went on world tours in early to mid 2000s (including performances in the US). After getting married and becoming a mother, she has been on a hiatus. She is currently residing in Chicago and recording her long-awaited second album to be released in 2013. This concert is a rare opportunity for Tigist’s fans and Chicago world music lovers.

Tewodros Aklilu who just returned from his EU/North African tour with renowned Ethiopian singer Teddy Afro will accompany along with Chicago’s Magic Carpet.

Persian‐Gypsy band Bad Mashadi and electro­‐ethnic solo artist Charles Mantis will open.

Win Two tickets to this Show! 

Just need to be a subscriber of Chicago Urbanite and leave a comment on this post to participate. We will announce the winner tomorrow!

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Win Tickets to Sones de Mexico’s 13 B’ak’tun concert: A Mayan Calendar Celebration

Sones de Mexico Ensemble presents
a spectacular concert experience and light show

13 B’AK’TUN: a celebration of the turning of the Mayan long-count calendar cycle

End of an Era • New Beginning

Sones de México, a two-time GRAMMY award nominated sextet based in Chicago, will present a spectacular concert and a light show in honor of the 13 B’ak’tun. All ages are welcome. This is a show you will not want to miss!

B’ak’tun is a measure of time in the ancient Maya long-count calendar cycle equivalent to 144,000 days (394 years). The current 13th B’ak’tun will mark the completion of a 5,122 year period in December of 2012. While popular culture portrays it as an apocalyptic “end of times,” the Mayans view it more optimistically and see it as a cause for celebration and renewal. Many Mayan communities in Southeastern Mexico and Guatemala are preparing to make special events and festivals to celebrate the 13 B’ak’tun in December.

Sones de Mexico Ensemble joins the celebration with a spectacular show as you have never seen them before. It will be a musical homage to the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Mexico with robotic lights, backlights, and fluorescent paint.

This concert will be filmed for a TV special. Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind spectacle

Saturday, December 1, 2012
two 90 min shows/no intermission: 7pm and 10pm
(doors open 30 mins before the show)

Mayne Stage
1328 W. Morse Ave.
Chicago, IL 60626

Tickets at maynestage.com. Advance tickets start at $20.

Win tickets to this Show 
Chicago Urbanite subscribers! You can win tickets to the 10pm show. Enter our Photo Competition and leave a comment on this post to participate. We will announce the winners on November 29. Good luck!

Come to our Rumba Reggae Party tomorrow and help the Afro-Peruvian children of El Guayabo

Underground Wonderbar
710 N. Clark St., Chicago, Illinois 60654

Saturday November 17
8pm-10:30pm

Chicago Urbanite, Chicago’s top blog promoting world music and dance, invites you to come celebrate and be grateful with us! Live music by NuBambu, the hottest rumba-reggae band in Chicago. Cover includes access to all of Underground Wonderbar stages.

Also, we will be filming footage for Nu Bambu’s Music Video and we want YOU to be in it. Come out with your dance moves and support the band’s video. It will be FUN!

DJ Rebolu will throwing down world music

Free giveaways.

50% OFF beautiful Jewelry by Monsieur Pamplemousse. We will also raffle a gorgeous necklace valued at $162!

YOUR ATTENDANCE WILL MAKE CHILDREN FROM PERU HAPPY THESE HOLIDAYS!

We will be collecting donations for Christmas events that will benefit children from Lima and the Afro-Peruvian community of El Guayabo, Chincha (see pics here). Here is a video of these beautiful children dancing and playing their own music:

Cover: $10

50% off to Chicago Urbanite followers who RSVP here (click on “Join”) before 3pm on Nov 17

(Must follow this blog/ like our Facebook page and RSVP to get discount)

Cover includes access to all of Underground Wonderbar stages. After our show, stay for Lonie Walker & her Big Bad Ass Company Band show. Also DJ MWELWA , FLX, and Kino will have their Global Late Nite from 11pm to 5am

Win tickets to Las Guitarras de España and El Payo Concert

SATURDAY NOVEMBER 10
8:30 PM
07:00 PM LOBBY DOORS

MAYNE STAGE

BUY TICKETS HERE

Las Guitarras de España and El Payo return to Mayne Stage performing Flamenco rumbas, tangos and even a Sevillana or two for you to dance too! Flamenco dancer, Chiara Mangiameli, owner of Studio Mangiameli, will offer some free basic flamenco dance instruction at 8:30PM. Cellist, Ian Maksin will also be a featured soloist for the evening.

Win Two tickets to this Show!
Just need to be a subscriber of Chicago Urbanite and leave a comment on this post to participate. We will announce the winner tomorrow morning. Good luck!

 

Win tickets to Moulin Rouge Show

Venue: Auditorium Theatre 50 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago, IL 60605
Dates: Friday, November 2 – Sunday, November 4, 2012
Times: Friday at 7:30 pm, Saturday at 8:00 pm, Sunday at 2:00 pm
Price: $74-$30

Get transported to the turn of the century Paris…a city of exquisite contradiction…when Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet performs Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet. Featuring a French music score, high-kicking choreography and a passionate story of love, aspiration and heartbreak, the ballet tells the story of Matthew and Nathalie as they tempt fate while seeking love at the infamous cabaret – The Moulin Rouge.

Win Two tickets to this Show!
Just need to be a subscriber of Chicago Urbanite and leave a comment on this post to participate. We will announce the winner tomorrow!

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