On Valentines Eve, One ticket gets you into two incredible shows: Jazz is Dead upstairs at The Echo & The Return of 70’s Ethiopian Funk God, Ayalew Mesfin w/ Debo Band downstairs at The Echoplex • Will be one for the books! •
The love is real, Los Angeles ❤
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The Return of Ayalew Mesfin, The 70’s Ethiopian Funk God!
February 13th, 2018 Vinyl Me, Please., Now Again Records and ArtDontSleep present: The Return of Ayalew Mesfin w/ Debo Band
With opening performances by: Wondem and Ethio Cali
From the album Hasabe (My Worries), a Now-Again x Vinyl Me, Please release, coming January 23. Ayalew Mesfin is among the legends of a 1970s Ethiopian funk era whose music was forced underground by his country’s government. Now, over 40 years later, his triumphant return gives us a chance to discover a rare & beautiful moment in music history.
We’ve been working really hard on this and we are excited to be presenting it to you. If you purchase entry into one of the events, you will be granted entry into both events. This is a very special one time happening and only going down in Los Angeles!
ArtDontSleep is excited to share this unveiling of sorts with you. Emanon, a long time favorite group of ours, is premiering new material and pretty much everyone on this line up is presenting new material! From the Dirty yet Scientific mind of Exile, we bring you the following event:
Thursday, September 19, 2013 ArtDontSleep presents: DIRTY SCIENCE
Live Performances by: Emanon Blu and Exile Fashawn Dag Savage
Special Guest Appearances by: Med, Thurz, CO$$, Blame One, Choosey, Denmark Vessey, Jimmetta Rose Smith, ABJO and more!
If you Love Fela Kuti and Live in California, this is your chance to be a part of a truly special celebration of Afrobeat. If you live in San Francisco, Fresno or Los Angeles, please be sure to be part of one of these epic and legendary nights.
Presale Ticket Location: http://theartformstudio.com/
701 E. 3rd St. Los Angeles, CA. 90013
6400 Sunset Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90028
Promotional Support by: LA Weekly, KPFK and FusicologyDig Deeper:
Today living in Paris, Allen has long been acknowledged as Africa’s finest kit drummer and one of it’s most influential musicians, the man who with Fela Anikulapo Kuti created Afrobeat – the hard driving, James Brown funk-infused, and politically engaged style which became such a dominant force in African music and whose influence continues to spread today.
Allen was playing with the Western Toppers when he met Kuti in 1964. “Fela had been presenting a jazz records programme on NBC (Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation) on Friday nights. He decided he wanted to form his own jazz band and play the music himself in the clubs. He’d tried out several drummers, but none of them were what he was looking for. He began to think there was no-one suitable in Africa. Then someone recommended me to him. I auditioned – and he asked me if I’d learnt to play in the USA! I had the style he wanted. We played strictly jazz together for about a year, as the Fela Ransome Kuti Jazz Quartet, before we started Koola Lobitos.”
Koola Lobitos, formed in 1965, played a mixture of highlife and jazz. A few years later, at the urging of funk musicians including Bootsy Collins and other members of James Brown’s band they met on tour in the US, Kuti and Allen simplified things further. “One idea, one song” became the Afrobeat paradigm).
Koola Lobitos’ nascent Afrobeat would have been nothing without Allen’s innovative bass drum patterns, which were unlike those used by any other kit drummer working in Lagos at the time. His bass drum dealt a double whammy, b- boom, b-boom. Where other drummers would play a single beat, Allen made it a double, giving Afrobeat its trademark forward thrust. “The bass drum patterns are unique to me,” says Allen. “I’d never play one, one. Any drummer can play that straight beat. But that’s just like putting a metronome in there.”
In 1969, Koola Lobitos made an extended visit to the US, where they lived a hand to mouth existence. “The living conditions were rough,” says Allen. “We started on the east cost, where there were lots of Nigerian students, and we did well there. Then we went west, via Chicago, to San Francisco and Los Angeles.” Audiences, which were still largely composed of Nigerians, grew smaller. “Fela got fed up just playing to Nigerians. He said if we were going to play to Nigerians, we might as well do it in Nigeria where there were a lot more of them.” The Koola Lobitos album The ‘69 Los Angeles Sessions, made on the hoof towards the end of the tour, documents the emergent Afrobeat style of the band.
Kuti’s political consciousness, nurtured by his politically active parents back home – and soon to become a defining feature of Afrobeat – was sharpened in the US, where he befriended a black American woman called Sandra Isidore. A member of the Black Panthers, Isidore introduced Kuti to the ideas of such people as Malcolm X, Angela Davis, the Last Poets, Stokeley Carmichael and Eldridge Cleaver, all of whose thinking played some part in the development of Kuti‘s own political philosophy, Blackism.
Once back in Lagos, Kuti renamed the band Africa 70 (it had in the US briefly been Nigeria 70, and was later tweaked to Afrika 70). With Allen forging the music’s vibrant signature rhythms, and Kuti its incendiary lyrics, the duo had, within a few years turned Afrobeat into a style rivaling the then reigning juju and highlife in popularity.
“Fela said I sounded like four drummers,” says Allen. “I was the only one who originated the music I played.” Fela used to write out the parts for all the other musicians. If Allen sounded like four drummers, it could have been because, in his mature Afrika 70 style, he was drawing on four different styles – highlife, soul/funk, jazz and traditional African drumming. A unique and mighty sound. (In 1970 when James Brown played in Nigeria, his arranger made careful study of Fela’s band and Allen’s drumming in particular, as did Ginger Baker, another disciple).
In 1975, Allen recorded his debut album, ‘Jealousy’, the first of three made with Afrika 70 and produced by Kuti. ‘Progress’ followed in 1976, ‘No Accommodation For Lagos’ in 1978. But by 1978 he was ready for a change of scene, and a year later he parted company with Kuti. The touring entourage had grown to outlandish proportions and there was talk of him not getting due respect or recompense for the contribution he had made to the creation of Afrobeat and the success of Afrika 70. “It’s not a big story,” says Allen today. “I was tired, I’d just had enough.” His final studio collaboration with Kuti was on an album made with American vibraphonist Roy Ayers, ‘Africa Centre Of The World’ (released in 1981). In 1979 he formed his own band, Tony Allen and the Afro Messengers, and recorded his first album away from Kuti, ‘No Discrimination’.
“Music is my mission,” says Allen. “I never get satisfied and I’m still learning from others. The musical world is very spiritual, and I don’t think there’s an end to it. As musicians, it’s our mission to keep going.”
Soul music is timeless, but if there was one decade when it defined the times that would be the seventies. The style was born in the mid-sixties at a time when its creators were struggling to establish their place in American society. Sam Cooke, Lou Rawls, Solomon Burke, Curtis, Otis, Smokey, Marvin, James, Sly and Bobby Womack among countless others, sketched out a blueprint for a new, modern Black music that would soon sweep the nation from Harlem’s 125th street to rural Virginia’s Tobacco Road and as far as Watt’s 103rd street. Ironically, it took some Brits and Bob Dylan’s endorsement to hip whitestream America to what they were missing out on in their own blackyard. As the sixties turned into the seventies, and all but the Panthers deferred their dreams of racial revolution, soul music matured and flourished as if all the hopes, dreams, anger and disappointment of a generation of young Blacks found expression in the music of Stevie, Curtis, Marvin and Minnie.
We almost lost Detroit, but from this and many other cities’ ashes emerged a beautiful and bold music – a more personal, and therefore universal, expression – that evolved into one of the most dominant culture expressions of the decade. By the dawn of the seventies, soul music was mainstreaming with the crossover success of artists like Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers, Marvin Gaye, Isaac Hayes, Minnie Riperton, Al Green and Michael Jackson. Just about everyone was getting in on the new trend of socially conscious lyrics, fatback drums and stop-on-a-dime horn sections. The popular and critical response to this music blew open the doors for a whole family of styles. Soul music was appropriated and incorporated into just about every other genre imaginable: soul-jazz, soul-rock, psychedelic soul, latin soul, and blue-eyed soul are just a few of the more popular hybrids.
And then there’s Funk. Like Metal is to Rock ‘n Roll, Funk is an extreme manifestation of Soul music that emerged in the late sixties and early seventies from the bold rhythmic experiments of Soul music’s pioneers like James, Sly, Curtis & Stevie. Soul music was the foundation and Funk was the attitude, the secret spice to get the people moving and it was applied liberally to songs by new and established artists alike. Some musicians, like Parliament-Funkadelic founder George Clinton, started their careers in the sixties singing Soul, but after Sly and James took their music to faster, funkier and blacker places, they followed headlong into uncharted funkmospheres, further expanding the sonic, social and sexual boundaries of Soul music. Herbie and his Headhunters, Donald Byrd, Roy Ayers to name but a few respected jazz musicians were helpless against this powerful new sound, giving us jazz-funk.
Sadly, America’s soul obsession wouldn’t last forever. Like a salesperson that didn’t understand its product or consumer, the music industry forced the soul into extinction by forcing it into platform boogie shoes and a rigid 4-4 dance beat. Some survived, but most artists’ careers tanked or they were forced to radically change their game. Forty years later, soul music is more popular than it’s been for decades with new talent and audiences gravitating to its sincere sentiment, heartfelt harmonies, and bad-ass beats.
ArtDontSleep will bring over two dozen timeless tunes and hi-fi highlights from 1970-1979 to life for one night only with That 70s Soul featuring Seu Jorge, Zap Mama, Alice Russell, Spacek, Coco O. (Quadron) and others. An all-star cast of musicians, including legends Ndugu Chancler and Derf Reklaw along with future legend Kamasi Washington, lead by multi-instrumentalist and arranger/composer Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, will breathe new life into these seventies soul masterpieces. These are many of the same creative and fearless musicians and promoters that brought you the recent East Side Story Show as well as the 2009 Timeless series featuring the music of J. Dilla, Mulatu Astake and Arthur Verocai.
On this special night some of the under-sung musical heroes that are still alive and with us today, like Leon Ware, James Gadson and others be honored through their music and presence.
Leon Ware is best known for the songs he’s written, Marvin Gaye’s “I Want You”, Quincy Jones or Average White Band’s “If I Ever Lose This Heaven” or Minnie Riperton’s “Inside My Love”, though he has no fewer than ten albums recorded under his own name for Motown, Elektra and most recently for the revived Stax record label. His sophisticated and sensual style of soul helped to define the influential quiet storm style.
James Gadson is a living legend behind a drum kit. He’s played behind everyone from Bill Withers and Charles Wright and the 103rd Street Band to Justin Timberlake and Norah Jones, with Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin and countless others along the way. Far from a one-trick pony, he’s also written, produced and sang on hundreds of records from the Doo-Wop era to the present day.
Celebrating the music of:
Al Green, Bill Withers, Bob James, Curtis Mayfield, Donny Hathaway, Eugene McDaniels, Gil Scott-Heron, Isaac Hayes, James Brown, Marvin Gaye, Minnie Riperton, Roy Ayers, Shuggie Otis, Sly Stone, Stevie Wonder & More.
Performances by: The Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble:
Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Ndugu Chancler, Derf Reklaw, Kamasi Washington, Brandon Coleman, Evan Francis, Philip Dizack, Sam Gendel, Elizabeth Lea, Marcel Camargo, Gabe Noel, Destani Wolf, I Ced, Joey Dosik, Jimetta Rose, Codany Holiday, Novena Carmel & More.
Featuring Special Guests: Seu Jorge
Coco O. (Quadron)
Guests of Honor: Leon Ware, James Gadson, & More
Hosted By: Garth Trinidad
DJ Sets by: Quest Love (The Roots)
The Umoja Sound System (Daz, Jun, Destroyer & Monalisa)
KCRW, LA Weekly, Wax Poetics, Fusicology
Sunday 12/16/2012 :: 6pm :: 21 + Wiser
The Mayan Theatre: 1038 South Hill Street, Los Angeles, CA., 90015, 213) 746-4674
The Mayan Theater
1038 South Hill Street, Los Angeles, CA. 90015 :: 213) 746-4674
Doors Open @ 8pm
Breakthrough is the debut full-length album from the Gaslamp Killer, a manic and mystic trip through the mind of a madman. Resident DJ and co-founder of the mythic Low End Theory club night in Los Angeles, the Gaslamp Killer is known across the globe for his impeccable turntable skills and high-energy performances. He delivers the same fire to Breakthrough, a project pulled from within his soul that is his strongest musical statement yet.
The Red Bull Music Academy is a world-travelling series of music workshops and festivals: a platform for those who make a difference in today’s musical landscape. The Academy began back in 1998, and has been traversing the globe since: from Berlin to Cape Town, São Paulo, Barcelona, London, Toronto and many other places. The upcoming edition of the Red Bull Music Academy is set to take place in New York City from April 28 through May 31, 2013. For more information, please visit www.redbullmusicacademy.com.
A Special Live Performance by Ondatrópica feat: Michi Sarmiento, Pedro “Ramaya” Beltran, Mario Galeano (Frente Cumbiero), Will “Quantic” Holland, Wilson Viveros, Markitos Mikolta, Alfredito Linares, Nidia Gongora, Juan Carlos “Chongo” Puello, y Mas.
Opening Sets By: Very Be Careful Buyepongo Chicano Batman
DJ Sets By: Sloe Poke (Feel Good Musik) Canyon Cody (Subsuelo) Panamami (Bodega) Ganas (Mas Exitos)
Plug Research & ArtDontSleep present: Saturday May 19th, 2012
Live Performances by: Lee Fields & The Expressions Cody ChessnuTT (Live Band)
DJs: Kenny Dope and Kon & Amir
Hosted By: Scarub (Living Legends)
Echoplex :: 1154 Glendale Blvd :: Los Angeles, CA. 90026
8pm-2am 21 + Wiser
30$ General admission
Lee Fields & The Expressions:
There aren’t too many artists making soul music today who had a release in 1969, back when R&B was first beginning to give the drummer some. Lee Fields, however, is one such artist—or maybe he’s better labeled a phenomenon. Since the late sixties, the North Carolina native has amassed a prolific catalog of albums and has toured and played with such legends as Kool and the Gang, Sammy Gordon and the Hip-Huggers, O.V Wright, Darrell Banks, and Little Royal. With a career spanning 43 years, releases on twelve different record labels, and having toured the world over with his raucous-yet-tender voice, it’s mind-blowing that the music he’s making today with Brooklyn’s own Truth & Soul Records is the best of his career. With a catalogue that ranges from James Brown-style funk to lo-fi blues to contemporary Southern soul to collaborations with French house DJ/producer Martin Solveig, Lee Fields has done it all. Today, with The Expressions—Truth & Soul’s house band, Lee Fields continues to evolve, enmeshed into the group’s sweeping, string-laden, cinematic soul sound. Their first full-length together, My World, released in June 2009 on Truth & Soul, was called “one smoking mother of an old-sound soul record” and a “throwback done right” by Pitchfork. While drawing comparisons to groups like The Moments, The Delfonics, The Stylistics, and—of course—James Brown, My World has been able to create a space of it’s own due to the group’s desire to interpret and further the formulas of good soul music rather then parrot and imitate them. Chalk that up to Truth & Soul producers and co-owners Jeff Silverman and Leon Michels, as well as the high level of musicianship of everyone involved. These are the same individuals that wrote, produced, and played on Aloe Blacc’s global smash hit LP Good Things for Stones Throw Records, and have provided the back drop for records by El Michels Affair, Adele, Liam Bailey, Ghostface Killah, and Jay-Z to name a few.
In 2002 Cody took his bass, drum machine, keyboard, guitar, organ, microphone, and headphones into his bedroom and single-handedly crafted his debut album, The Headphone Masterpiece (Ready, Set, Go). The multi- flavored double CD featured 39 songs spanning 99 minutes, impressively all written, produced, and performed on Cody’s four-track cassette recorder. Cody was able to achieve something virtually unheard of in the 21st Century high tech recording world and turned heads all throughout the industry for doing so. Cody’s notoriety and fame soared when Grammy Award winning band, The Roots decided to cover his song, “The Seed” for their Phrenology album and featured him on guitar and vocals. “The Seed (2.0)” video was nominated for an MTV Video Music Award and an MTV 2 Award , introducing Cody to a more mainstream audience. Simultaneously, his own album The Headphone Masterpiece was nominated for the Shortlist Music Prize in 2003. Cody’s resurrection of live music and pop funk style continued to gain attention with his song “Look Good in Leather” appearing in international TV commercial ads and his performance in the 2006 Dave Chapelle’s Block Party movie. Cody, having tasted musical success, continued to tour nationally and internationally with music from his 2006 project The Live Release and received accolades for his video “King of the Game”, directed by Academy Award winning visual effects artist Michel Gondry. Following the 2007 tour, Cody decided to step back for a while in and shifted his focus to his family and self-development.
An evil dance band cloned from the stem cells of multi-instrumentalist/producer Nate Brenner. His songwriting style is deeply rooted in the traditions of the future, which few alive today know anything about. And while the compositions are geared towards the sinister post-apocalyptic dance colonies that are on the verge of sprouting up around the world, an undeniably timeless funk is woven into the Naytronix hit machine. As the bassist for genre-bending institutions tUnE-yArDs and Beep!, he is not a stranger to voyaging across his great many homelands and spinning platinum out of the resources he trades along the way. Naytronix is the confluence of these worlds as well as of the virtues of the past and the dark exuberance lurking in the future. Brenner conducts the show with the exactitude of a subtle supervillain. Let the evil dance party begin.
Mark your calendars, this one is gonna be BIG! We’re all very excited to have this happening in Los Angeles and wouldn’t want anyone to miss out on this bill! Check below for important event details…
“We are having the greatest conversations with Quantic and Robert Glasper about all of the many special guests and surprises that we have in store for this very special show. However, we have been sworn to secrecy! We also wanted to be sure to inform you that TICKETS WILL SELL OUT. They are moving faster than any previous ArtDontSleep shows and we expect to be sold out by next week. We just want to make sure that all of our good friends, that we know will LOVE this event, don’t get left outside in the cold…
Below are a few of our favorite videos and various pieces of music from all of the wonderful artists on the bill. Feel free to listen, download, share, etc. The more folks these wonderful artists reach, the better the world will be! 🙂
Lastly, we printed a very limited amount of tickets for all of our folks that do not like to purchase online tickets. A physical ticket means you dont wait in will call, you just walk straight through the door.
Below you will find the addresses of the two physical locations we are housing tickets at. One is on the west side and one is on the east side.”
Thursday, March 22, 2012 (8pm – 2am)
EVFA & ArtDontSleep present:
The Robert Glasper Experiment feat Bilal & KING
& Quantic & Alice Russell (Live Band)
Main Room DJs: Rich Medina & Anthony Valadez
Lounge DJ’s: Al Jackson, Sacred & Daz
Hosted By: Azul Amaral
Exchange LA :: 618 S. Spring Street :: Los Angeles, CA 90014 :: (213) 627-8070
Roy Ayers was born in Los Angeles, California and grew up in a musical family. At the age of five, Lionel Hampton gave him his first pair of mallets, which led to the vibraphone being his trademark sound for decades. The area of Los Angeles that Ayers grew up in, now known as “South Central”, but then known as “South Park”, was the epicenter of the Southern California Black Music Scene. The schools Roy attended (Wadsworth Elementary, Nevins Middle School, and Thomas Jefferson High School) were all close to the famed Central Avenue, Los Angeles’ equivalent of Harlem’s Lenox Avenue and Chicago’s State Street.
Ayers was responsible for the highly regarded soundtrack to Jack Hill’s 1973 blaxploitation film Coffy, which starred Pam Grier. He later moved from a jazz-funk sound to R&B, as seen on Mystic Voyage, which featured the songs “Evolution” and the underground disco hit “Brother Green (The Disco King)”, as well as the title track from his 1976 album Everybody Loves the Sunshine.
In 1977, Ayers produced an album by the group RAMP, Come Into Knowledge, commonly and mistakenly thought to stand for “Roy Ayers Music Project”. That Fall, he had his biggest hit with “Running Away”. In 1980, Ayers released Music Of Many Colors with the Nigerian Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti.
Since then, Roy Ayers has toured the world, many times over, released numerous records and had dozens of life changing collaborations. Roy also made a hug impact in the world of Hip-Hop and RnB. Many people have sampled him and covered him. Erykah Badu, Mary J. Blidge, Mos-Def, Digable Planets, DJ Shadow, Nas, Madlib, Ice Cube, Public Enemy, Common, The Pharcyde, Pete Rock, Jill Scott and many many more.
Pete Rock, “Soul Brother No. 1.” Rose to prominence in the early 1990s as one half of the critically acclaimed group Pete Rock & CL Smooth. After the duo went their separate ways, Rock continued with a solo career that has garnered him worldwide respect. Along with groups such as Stetsasonic, A Tribe Called Quest, The Roots and Gang Starr, Nas and Notorious B.I.G., Talib Kweli and the late J Dilla, Rock played a major role in the merging of elements from jazz into hip hop music (also known as jazz rap). He is widely recognized as one of the greatest hip hop producers of all time, and is often mentioned alongside DJ Premier and RZA as one of the mainstays of 1990s East Coast hip hop production.
Stephen Bruner is Thundercat and Thundercat is the dominant bassist rising within the ranks of R&B, rock, hip-hop, jazz, electronic, and beyond. The mystique behind the man named for his favorite cartoon seemingly hides an introspective, ambitious, and fearless young artist whose solo debut album is finally emerging in front of the vast catalog of experience he has amassed in collaboration with the likes of Erykah Badu, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Shafiq Husayn, Suicidal Tendencies, Stanley Clarke, and Flying Lotus, his closest partner and head of the Brainfeeder movement. Stephen is joined by a serious cast of jazz monsters!
J.Rocc: One of the original turntablists, J. Rocc founded the Beat Junkies in 1992 with Melo-D and Rhettmatic, but has done just as much on his own as in a group setting. He began DJing in the mid-’80s with a California group named PSK. Soon after forming, the Beat Junkies became a seminal force in the rise of instrumental hip-hop, including core member Babu plus future stars Shortkut and D-Styles.
In addition to numerous mixtapes and his own production for Stones Throw releases, J. Rocc has been the DJ for Madlib’s live shows since the early 2000’s, was the 3rd member of Jaylib (Madlib & J Dilla) during the group’s live events, and collaborated with Madlib on Beat Konducta Vol. 5-6: A Tribute to J Dilla.