Second Sundays: April 2014

SECOND SUNDAYS is a monthly series of Open Studios, Live Music/ DJ, and Site-specific Interventions presented by Pioneer Works every second Sunday of every month. Opens art & science studios start at 5PM, live music curated by Olivier Conan starts at 7PM.

Washington D.C. is home to the largest Ethiopian community outside of Ethiopia, so it’s no surprise that some of the greatest exponents of the 70′s era Ethiopian fusion made popular by the series Ethiopique should be based there. DCs’ Feedel Band is probably the last of the great Ethio Jazz bands and features saxophonist Moges Habte, from Addis Ababa, who also played with one of the most celebrated Ethiopian group of the 1970′s, The Walias Band – you might have heard their track Muziqawi Silt in Jim Jarmush’s Broken Flowers. Of late The Feedel Band has been mining their 70’s roots and working with producer Thomas Gobena (Gogol Bordello’s bassist, Debo Band producer) on a full-length album for Electric Cowbell Records.

In the 1960′s and 1970′s, the government of Guinea engaged in a campaign known as Authenticité. It was a drive to create a new musical movement that would be specifically Guinean, but would include the modern wonders that were the electric guitar, the electric bass and the drumset. Surprisingly, for a government-sponsored program, the results proved mesmerizing and a myriad new bands were born. The Mandingo bandleader and guitarist Mamady Kouyate was one of those pioneers. He played in a number of bands but most notably with the Bembeya Jazz National – Guinea’s most celebrated band. Kouyate has been living in NY for a few years now where his Mandingo Ambassadors are deeply involved in New York’s Guinean life, but also regularly play for American club and festival audiences.
“Dazzling vocal and guitar patterns over a rhythm section that is like a perfect system” Ben Ratliff, NY Times.

Pioneer Works’ artists-in-residence open their studios, as part of the event. Residents include Andres Carranza; Dorit Chrysler & Valérie Hallier; Gerard & Kelly; Jonathan Harris; Bruno Levy; Jaša Mrevlje-Pollak; Bradley Pitts; Pedro Wirz; and Clocktower Productions’ newly completed radio station.

As part of Pioneer Works festivities on April 13, Pioneer Works will be launching its Radio Channel: Pioneer Works Radio Station! From 5-10pm, Clocktower Radio will stream artists’ interviews and live music. Onsite, the radio studio will show Julian Bozeman’s new video.

Head out to the bonfire in the courtyard to gaze at the stars while NPR’s reads you a bedtime story.

Lulu Miller is a reporter on the NPR Science Desk where she is working with Alix Spiegel to start a new series about Human Behavior. She is also a contributing producer for Radiolab.