Femi Kuti (born June 16, 1962) is the stage name of Nigerian Afrobeat and jazz musician Olufela Olufemi Anikulapo Kuti. Born the eldest son of Afrobeat figurehead Fela Kuti, the musician has collaborated with the likes of Common and Mos Def and hails from Lagos, Nigeria.
REX THEATER JULY 28
NEW SHIRTS ARE IN! CLICK THE SHIRT TO PURCHASE at our store on Commonwealth Press website.
THE RETURN OF PITTONKATONK HEADLINERS and one of the baddest bands around WHAT CHEER BRIGADE!!!
plus TranSaharan Ensemble from North Africa
10 bucks FRIDAY AUGUST 5 @ BRILLOBOX
Here is a great documentary on contemporary gypsy music posted by the BBC. Its definitely worth looking into.
Summer is unfortunately coming to a close but that means I’m ramping up for a great series of shows in the fall and winter. We are quickly approaching the 10 Year Anniversary of Pandemic. This is the first in a series of events leading up.
Friday Sept 4th Pandemic is squaring off again w/ Juan Diego for a night of Cumbia, Tropical Bass, International Flavors, Coastal Vibes, Manele, Chalga, Bhangra, Bollywood, and more. Juan Diego and Pandemic Pete have been teaming up and destroying dance floors for the past 3 years. You may have caught them at the Cosmopolitan Pgh event back in July or at the La Misa Negra show at Bayardstown Social Club.
By the time Tal National reached international acclaim with 2013’s ‘Kaani’, the band’s first release outside of Niger, they had spent a decade crisscrossing dirt pathways through the Sahara, playing epic five-hour sets, seven days a week and selling their CDs on street corners. In the process, they became Niger’s most popular band, with songs blasted on national TV and cell phones. Following FatCat Records’ release of ‘Kaani’, Western audiences and critics embraced the band’s finely-honed sound. NPR were hit by “the band’s tightness and fiery energy”; The Guardian praised “their full-tilt approach, and hypnotic intensity”; while Songlines wrote of “a rich, hybrid sound that draws on familiar West African elements to create something rewardingly fresh and different”. FatCat released their dazzling follow-up, ‘Zoy Zoy’ in April 2015, which Pitchfork called “colorful and bright and dizzying, [recalling the] wall-of-sound quality of Konono No. 1, except more frenzied and texturally varied.”
Niger borders Nigeria, Mali and Ghana, and is also the home of well-known musicians Bombino and Etran Finatawa. Collected within this former French colony can be found Songhai, Fulani, Hausa, and Tuareg populations, all of whom are represented in the membership of Tal National. The nation is no stranger to highlife, kora and afrobeat musics, while giving the world Tuareg Blues and a unique brand of hip-hop. In Tal National’s music can be heard the rolling 12/8 rhythms in the Hausa’s fuji percussion, the pensive aridity of the Tuareg’s assouf and the exquisite griot guitar of Mali’s Songhai, all delivered with virtuoso precision and unrelenting energy. After listing ‘Kaani’ in its top 10 albums of 2013, The New York Times wrote that “the music keeps leaping ahead with one surprise after another: guitar parts that align and diverge and reconfigure, drumming that pounces on offbeats. The patterns are crisp, complex and tireless.”
This concert is co-sponsored with The Consortium, Pandemic and Calliope.
ALSO HELPING OUT W/ ROOTS: A ROOTS REGGAE FESTIVAL
The Detroit Party Marching Band is a guerrilla band based in Detroit, Michigan. The band appears at events unexpectedly. The band has played at events such as Mardi Gras (2012), Theatre Bizarre, Noel Night, Blowout!, the Nain Rouge parade, the Hamtramck Labor Day Parade, 2010 Detroit Free Press Marathon, and HONK! in Somerville, MA, as well as at many bars and parties throughout the Detroit area, both scheduled and unexpectedly. It has supported acts such as Band of Horses, Rebirth Brass Band, and What Cheer? Brigade. It was founded by Rachel Harkai and John and Molly Notarianni, who felt inspired by the second-line bands they saw in New Orleans during Mardi Gras, and also after a trip to HONK! in late 2009. Its repertoire is a mix of Balkan and Balkan-inspired songs, and modern pop and R&B rearranged for brass, usually by the members themselves. They have also toured the Netherlands in Europe as part of the Cross Linx festival. They enjoy the admiration of their mothers, each other, and various drunks in and around Detroit.
Hip hop music has always been unafraid to push boundaries. Perhaps because it simultaneously came from nothing yet came from everything, the genre stands alone in how creatively outside influences can be incorporated into its musical mix.
PitchBlak Brass Band uses the epic sounds of tubas, trombones, saxophones and other typically non-hip hop instruments in the spirit of The Roots and some of rap’s iconic live bands, to deliver an energy that samples, loops and breakbeats can’t always capture. Their blend of soundscapes and lyrical exuberance creates a grand adventure in listening, one that can hold the attention of music fans from across a fairly wide spectrum.
-Manny Faces, Birthplace Magazine
THE PEOPLE”S CHAMPS
With their “crazy ass genre mash ups” (Blakbook), People’s Champs’ truly original sound is equal parts Sharon Jones, tUnE-yArDs, Os Mutantes, William Onyeabor, and Prince. Critics are calling People’s Champs a “New York supergroup!” (Lucid Culture) and “Well on their way to becoming NYC’s de facto Funk and Afrobeat experience” (Deli Magazine).
AUG 7 Pandemic hits Brillobox again. Things are coming at me so fast i can’t keep it all straight. I’ll have some major updates to the site coming in the next few days. Sit tight and listen to this mix
Pandemic is a dance party featuring music from around the globe. Every first friday and third saturday brillobox transforms into a transglobal dance party. There are no boarders, no pretense, no bottle service.Prepare yourself for a night of Bhangra, Balkan Brass, Cumbia, Chalga, Funk Carioca, Russian Ska and more.
w/ Resident Pandemic Pete & guest Juan Diego (and guest?)
May Day and Cinco De Mayo all in one.
Pandemic is a dance party featuring global dancehall. Every first friday and third saturday brillobox transforms into a transglobal dance party. There are no boarders, no pretense, no bottle service.Prepare yourself for a night of Bhangra, Balkan Brass, Cumbia, Chalga, Funk Carioca, Russian Ska and more. While the term Global bass isn’t a term i enjoy it’s probably the best way to describe it.
This event is FREE but WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT. Please contribute to our indiegogo campaign and tell your friends to also contribute.
WHAT is Pittonkatonk?
Pittonkatonk is a community celebration in the form of Brass BBQ. When was the last time you danced until you hurt? When you saw a band play in a public space where there wasn’t a stage or even a need for a stage? Everyone is treated as a VIP because there are no ticket prices, no vending, nothing holding you back from engaging. Pittonkatonk 2014 was a success because we made a direct call to the community and they answered. In Pittonkatonk’s first year we welcomed over 750 spectators and almost 100 performing musicians. Together we went from dancing the kolo to a moshpit. Pittonkatonk made a lasting impression in the community because it blurred the lines between music festival and a family reunion. Our festival is a success when YOU, the community participates. When EVERYONE can celebrate together regardless of age, race, class. We want YOU to bring what you can, whether its making a dish of food, donating $25-$500, volunteering, helping to clean up, or just spectating.
Council Person Corey O’Connor’s office
Oakland Planning and Development Corp
Pgh Children’s Museum
Center for Creative Reuse
Big tings… Guest DAN DABBER is back w/ Pandemic Pete on Friday April 3rd.
Pandemic is one of Pittsburgh’s longest running dance parties featuring music from around the globe. Prepare yourself for a night of Indian Bhangra, Balkan Brass, South American Cumbia, Brazilian Samba, Baile Funk, Bulgarian Chalga, Russian Ska, and more.
More killer tunes from Man Recordings. Loving this new one from Daniel Haaksman.
Coming up this weekend I’ll be speaking at the Humanities Festival at Space Gallery on Saturday March 28.
PITTONKATONK IS UPON US. Who doesn’t love a day long picnic featuring over 100 performers like What Cheer Brigade, Detroit Party Marching Band, Pitchblak Brass band, Black Bear Combo, Beauty Slap and more. Please consider donating to our indiegogo so we can make it happen.
PITTONKATONK 2015: A May Day Brass BBQ Picnic
Where: Vietnam Veterans Pavilion
When: Saturday May 2, 2015 at 2pm
Pittonkatonk is a May Day Brass BBQ/Picnic held on Saturday May 2nd at the Vietnam Veterans Pavilion in
Schenley Park. This years event will include 4 national touring bands What Cheer Brigade , Pitchblak Brass
Band , Black Bear Combo and Detroit Party Marching Band as well as locals Beauty Slap , May Day
Marching Band , Col. Eagleburger’s Goodtime Highstepping Band , and more. We are also adding to the
lineup 2 local high school marching bands and facilitating a collaborative performance by UPrep High School
Band and What Cheer Brigade.
About Pittonkatonk .
While we don’t charge and admission to the event, this event is not free. The bands need gas money, food,
and accommodations. We ask that folks make contributions to our Indiegogo Campaign . We do not sell
tickets, we do not vend food, everyone is welcome. But if you find a value to this we ask that you consider
donating. This event is a potluck and we ask that members of the community bring a dish to share. Last year
we had over 700 ppl attend and participate. We hope that we can continue to make Pittonkatonk a May Day
BREWS FOR BRASS A PITTONKATONK FUNDRAISER is happening April 22 at Rock Bottom Brewery in Homestead.
Now almost half way through our 10th year of this madness we are stepping it up even more. Friday March 6th we are back at Brillobox for first friday installment w/ a guest DJ and Resident Pandemic Pete
Pandemic is more than just a dance party. Every first friday and third saturday resident Pandemic Pete and a guest of Djs, Bands, Performers of all kinds join forces and bring you boarder defying dance party. You will experience track after track of new dabke from Syria, a punjabi bhangra, eastern european chalga, and cumbia that will sure to keep you dancing. Who knows you may even experience a random surprise brass band. Who knows what will happen. Voted Pittsburgh’s Best Dance Party by the 2014 Pgh City Paper and the party is only just getting started.
Also we are about to launch our Indiegogo for Pittonkatonk.
in the meantime take a look at some great videos
Saturday March 21 we will be back w/ guest DJ STROBE (412 Live) playing Latin House, Bhangra, and more. Also we are working on a surprise guest from across the Atlantic. We will get you more details as that unfolds.