(This article is jointly published between REDEFINE magazine and South Seattle Emerald.)
Khu.éex’ (pronounced koo-eek; “potlatch” in Tlingit) is a 10-piece intergenerational band whose musical style is fluid, with improvisational prowess that allows them to span genres as wide-ranging as funk and hip-hop to jazz and spoken word. With members spread throughout the Seattle region to as far up north as Bellingham and Juneau, Alaska, they are a project with a majority Native membership and a penchant for singing in Tlingit and Haida. Following a sold-out show at High Dive on Indigenous Heritage Day in November, they will be performing a Valentine’s Day show at the Seattle Aquarium.
This Saturday, the first-ever Black & Loud Fest brings local Black-fronted rock and alternative music to Fremont. The free fest highlights Pacific Northwest bands and artists who fall into genres outside of what is generally considered “Black music.” Black & Loud takes place on Sept. 10 from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. at LTD in Fremont at 309 N 36th St.
We’ve all had that moment: You’re walking down the street, and you notice eyes on you. You feel someone’s gaze permeating your being and instinctively know they think things about you, that they’re forming opinions of you based on their interpretation of what they see. The radar, the detection system used to identify you in other people’s minds, is the basis for Gui Chevalier’s new single “Radar.”
Newly released on March 18, 2022, Nic Masangkay’s “Mothers” explores the unlearning of possessive love and how to better honor our matriarchs. The song was inspired by 2000s R&B music and was released with a new music video filmed in Washington’s Deception Pass.
“Mothers” is the second single to Masangkay’s larger project, We Came of Age as Love Was Changing, which will be a prose poetry book, music album, and multimedia performance.
The young musicians of Seattle JazzED’s Girls Ellington Project are inviting community members to an evening of improv and live music on Tuesday, March 15, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Royal Room in Columbia City.
The free event is geared at empowering “women and nonbinary people within the wider jazz community to be seen and heard,” the group said in a press release. “Femme instrumentalists and vocalists that wish to jam will be welcome on stage” to join the all-girl high-school jazz band and other Seattle musicians.
Entering into a new world is to be reborn, become brand new, fresh. One can be content in their own world, unwilling to take on new experiences, while others enter new atmospheres effortlessly.
Music has the ability to assist you on your healing voyage, and South End singer-songwriter Unapologetically Jason’s new album To New Worlds does just that. It was like landing on a planet that I’d never encountered, yet it still seemed so familiar. It felt almost oxymoronic.
Ernestine Anderson was just 16 years old when she announced to her parents that she was going to leave Seattle and go on the road to sing with a big band. She’d only recently moved to the city from Texas and was attending Garfield High School. Two years later, when the Johnny Otis band came to town, she made good on her promise, leaving Seattle in 1946 to eventually live in New York, Switzerland, and other cities throughout Europe during an illustrious six-decade career, during which she recorded more than 30 albums. But, no matter where she lived, her heart always pulled her back to her family and the city she loved.
Seattle’s Central District in the 1940s and ’50s was a jazz mecca. Fellow Garfield High School alum, Quincy Jones, described it as “screaming around the clock.” Both Anderson and Jones performed with Garfield’s jazz band and in various clubs on Seattle’s Jackson Street. Music journalist Paul De Barros’ book, Jackson Street After Hours: The Roots of Jazz in Seattle, has become the standard historical text on the Central District of Seattle and the jazz scene that was going on during the 1940s through the early ’60s. But Anderson felt she needed to make it elsewhere before she would be recognized professionally at home.
“There were a lot of clubs in the Central area of Seattle: The Black and Tan, The Rocking Chair, and a whole bunch of other[s],” said Eugenie Jones, jazz singer and coproducer of “Celebrating Ernestine Anderson,” a series of community events being held this month to honor the life and legacy of this incredible Seattle icon, who died in 2016.
Since time immemorial, Indigenous people have celebrated storytelling as a way to connect the present to past lessons and future dreaming. Narrative sovereignty is a form of land guardianship, and Nia Tero supports this work through its storytelling initiatives, including the Seedcast podcast, as well as in this column for media partner the South Seattle Emerald.
My name is Amelia Filohivalu Yvaana Kami, but I commonly go by Mia Kami. I am Tongan. Both of my parents are Tongan. My mom comes from the main island, from the villages of Kolomotu’a and Hofoa, and my dad is from Haʻapai, which is an outer island. I’m currently based in Suva, Fiji, where I just completed my studies in law and politics at the University of the South Pacific (USP). I am a singer. A songwriter. A new graduate and job-seeker. A daughter. A sister. A woman of the Pacific.
In 2018, a cousin of mine reached out because she was involved in an anti-logging campaign in the Oro Province of Papua New Guinea, and her group needed an anthem to motivate the team while inspiring awareness about these issues in the world and building momentum for their campaign. It was a smart decision. Art communicates and motivates in a way that data and speeches do not, merging the heart and the head. I was honored to be asked.
When I’m in the early stages with a song, it’s just me and my guitar. I start with a theme and some chords, then let the melodies and the words flow, recording myself so that I don’t lose anything good. With this anthem, I didn’t want to be too obvious, so I stayed away from lyrics like “deforestation is bad.” Luckily, pretty early on, I found the word “rooted,” and it just stuck. “Rooted” became the center and title of the song.
In response to the COVID-19 delta variant, The Seattle Public Library (SPL) has teamed up with an array of entertainers, community organizations, and artists to create “What the World Needs Now: A Dreamathon.” The Dreamathon is a series dedicated to encouraging community members to imagine a better pandemic life through art, music, and knowledge.
“We started COVID response projects in 2020 but intentionally decided that community-led work should be at the center of what we were doing,” SPL public engagements program manager Davida Ingram said. “So there’s a really beautiful array of culturally specific work that happened in response to COVID that has a lot of implications for racial justice and the role that arts and culture sort of plays in amplifying concerns around public health.”