with Nona Hendryx, Joan As Police Woman, Morley, Imani Uzuri, Toshi Reagon, Tamar-kali, Hanifah Walidah, Alsarah, Be Steadwell, Women of The World, Ganessa James, Alex Nolan, Allison Miller, Christelle Durandy, Climbing Poetree, Robi D Light, Martha Redbone & many more
Sat September 20th, 2014
Minimum Age: 18+
Doors Open: 6:00PM
Show Time: 7:00PM
Event Ticket: $20
Word*Rock*&Sword returns for YEAR 4 at Le Poisson Rouge. This concert is a part of Word*Rock*&Sword: A Festival Celebration of Women’s Lives. 8 Days City Wide. Founded by Singer/Composer/Producer /Activist Toshi Reagon as a call to Women and all the people who love them. This call is to put an end to violence and inequality for women on the planet. We also mean to celebrate, uplift, and share our gifts with our communities.
MC: Karen Williams
Featuring (line-up is subject to change):
Joan As Police Woman
Women of The World
Marcelle Davies Lashley
An All Star Band Featuring
Allison Miller- Drums, Juliette Jones- Violin, Alex Nolan- Guitar, Christelle Durandy- Percussion and Vocals
This is a general admission, standing event. Happy hour from 6-7pm including $3 beer and $5 well drinks.
Word*Rock*& Sword: A Musical Celebration of Women’s Lives V
If Labelle fans grieved the end of an era, Nona Hendryx fans would welcome a new one as the revolutionary art-rock, new-wave goddess embarked upon her own impressive solo career, which spanned eight studio albums and engaged her with an impressive line up of collaborators (from Prince, Peter Gabriel, Talking Heads, Laurie Anderson, Vernon Reid of Living Color, AfrikaBambata, Bono and the soul influenced funk band Cameo), resulting in several top ten hits and a Grammy nomination (“Rock This House,” from her album The Heat, 1985, with Keith Richards on guitar).
(read full bio here_
Nona Hendryx official site
Joan As Police Woman
Joan as Police Woman (Joan Wasser) is a world-renowned recording artist, songwriter, performer, producer and multi-talented instrumentalist. First trained as a classical violinist, Wasser was influenced by the music of Jimi Hendrix, Siouxie and the Banshees, Nina Simone, and Black Flag. She went on to perform in a number of alternative rock bands including The Dambuilders, Those Bastard Souls, and Helium. Throughout the early 2000s, Wasser went on to collaborate with artists including John Cale, Lou Reed, David Sylvian, Antony & The Johnsons, and Rufus Wainwright, several of whom went on to be featured on her own records. In 2002, Wasser formed Joan as Police Woman, and her debut album Real Life was released in 2006 to great acclaim. Pitchfork celebrates her songs that “remind us of a time when pop tunes wound up in jazz clubs without losing anything in translation.” She recently returned from an extensive European tour for her 6th studio album, Let it Be You, a collaboration with Benjamin Lazar Davis. Tonight Wasser will play songs from her upcoming unreleased album and is joined by Parker Kindred, Ben Perowsky, Oren Bloedow, Jared Samuel and Thomas Bartlett.
“Soulful adventurism – a voice so wondrous and moving it makes everyone else’s seem ordinary and mundane” THE GUARDIAN
“Ravishing and lovelorn” MOJO
“The coolest woman in pop” THE TIMES
Morley official site | Morley on Facebook | Morley on Twitter
From Carnegie Hall, Nice Jazz Festival to the Nomad Women’s Festival in the Sahara Desert, Morley has brought her unique blend of jazz, folk and soul to the world’s stage. Be it solo with her acoustic guitar or with full electric band, her message is consistent and clear; love, justice and inspiration. Morley performs all over the world, and had the distinct honor of presenting at TEDWomen. Her song “Women of Hope” (video by Damani Baker “Still Bill”) has been featured in Nobel Women’s Initiative documentaries and has brought her before many world leaders and policy makers. She has performed for His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, Ban Ki-moon, Mary Robinson, and Ela Gandhi. She has written, collaborated, and shared the stage with such distinguished artists as Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon, Toshi Reagon, Richie Havens, Robert Wilson, Raul Midón, Amadou et Mariam, Joan Wasser, Dave Matthews, Sheryl Crow, Queen Latifah, Angélique Kidjo, Sarah McLachlan, Max Roach, Wynton Marsalis,Joan Wasser, Manu Katche and Cassandra Wilson. Morley’s previous recording, Seen, came out on Universal/Polydor. Prior to that, the Days Like These CD was released independently, before being picked up by Universal. Morley’s debut, Sun Machine, was released on Sony/WORK, songs from her albums have been featured on several television programs, both nationally and internationally. Morley’s voice was also featured as the soundtrack for the Ralph Lauren fragrance, “My Romance”.
Innovative vocalist and composer Imani Uzuri is an eclectic artist who travels internationally from Morocco to Moscow creating and performing in world class venues across various genres including concerts, recordings, experimental theater, performance art and sound installations. Uzuri’s work has been called “stunning” by New York Magazine and incorporates her interests in world culture, experimentation and sacred music. She has earned critical acclaim for her debut album, Her Holy Water: A Black Girl’s Rock Opera as well as for her collaborations with diverse artists such as Herbie Hancock, John Legend, Wangechi Mutu, Sandford Biggers and Vijay Iyer. The Village Voices says, “With a voice that would sound equally at home on an opera stage or a disco 12-inch, Imani Uzuri is a constant surprise…seamlessly combining jazz, classical, country and blues motifs into highly personalized compositions.” Uzuri’s new album, The Gypsy Diaries, draws on her rural Southern roots as well as influences ranging from Sufi devotionals to Romany laments and features sitar, acoustic guitar, cello, violin, Japanese shinobue flute and world percussion. It is a vibrant lyrical and spiritual soundscape that was named #2 on Rhapsody’s World Top 10 List Summer 2012. Uzuri is currently composing a new musical GIRL Shakes Lose Her Skin that she is developing with playwright Zakiyyah Alexander inspired by the works of Philadelphia Poet Laureate Sonia Sanchez. “Uzuri never fails to mesmerize audiences with her narcotic blend of…ethereal sounds” (Time Out New York)
Imani Uzuri official site
Toshi Reagon official site | Toshi Reagon on Twitter | Toshi Reagon on Facebook | Toshi Reagon on Instagram
Described by Vibe magazine as “one helluva rock’n’roller-coaster ride” and by Pop Matters as “a treasure waiting to be found,” Toshi Reagon is a one-woman celebration of all that’s dynamic, progressive and uplifting in American music. Since first taking to the stage at age 17, this versatile singer-songwriter-guitarist has moved audiences of all kinds with her big hearted, hold-nothing-back approach to rock, blues, R&B, country, folk, spirituals and funk. The New York Times described her blend as “…a love of mixing things up…[her] vocal style ranges from a dirty blues moan to a gospel shout to an ethereal croon.” Her live performances, in particular, aren’t just accessible; they’re irresistible. And Toshi Reagon loves her audiences. Leading her renowned band–BIGLovely, launched in 1996–she instantly connects, inspires and empowers.
Photo credit: JOMOTO/Molly Rubin and Tony DiPietro
Tamar-kali official site | Tamar-kali on Facebook | Tamar-kali on Twitter | Tamar-kali on Bandcamp
A Tamar-kali performance is a study in a soul yearning to break free of its earthly bounds. There are moments when her voice soars amidst a flurry of hardcore guitar riffs, earth shaking shimmies and gyrations that you believe you may just witness its escape. Her independent artistry, eclectic sound and versatility have allowed her to perform on variety of domestic and international stages with a diverse list of artists from Paramore and Fishbone to Jean Grae and The Roots.
Hanifah Walidah is a musician, playwright, educator and social arts activist. She currently is touring internationally as lead singer-songwriter for electro-soul band St.Lô. Her rich, twenty-year career has taken an ethnographic approach to the arts to create culturally relevant film, music, and stage works that help foster social change. Recent projects include the feature length award winning rocumentary U People and the nationally noted Black Folks’ Guide to Black Folks, a one-woman show and feature-length film imagining and stimulating conversations among queer and straight communities of color in the contemporary U.S. She is a founding member of the well-known New York City women of color theatre cabaret, Rivers of Honey.
Hanifah Walidah official site
Hanifah Walidah on Facebook
Hanifah Walidah on Twitter
Hanifah Walidah on Bandcamp
Alsarah, is a Sudanese born singer, songwriter and ethnomusicologist. Born in the capital city of Khartoum, where she spent the first 8 years of her life, she relocated to Taez, Yemen with her family to escape the ever stifling regime in her native country. She abruptly moved to the US in 1994, when a brief civil war broke out in Yemen. Alsarah started her musical training at the age of 12. After attending The Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter High School, in Hadley, MA, she spent 4 years at Wesleyan University studying Music with a concentration in Ethnomusicology.
Be Steadwell: With roots in jazz vocals, acapella and folk-Be composes a soulful blend of genres in what she calls queerpop. In her live performances, she utilizes loop pedal vocal layering and beat boxing to compose her songs on stage.Be Steadwell is a songwriter from Washington DC. Redefining the love song in a modern context-Be’s lyrics focus on love and resistance between women.
Women of The World
Women of the World is an international ensemble of musicians representing 9 countries.Honoring global folk traditions, their repertoire spans music in 21 languages.
In many ways, the ensemble is a microcosm of the world, with members working closely together, not just to create and perform music, but also learning about each other’s countries, cultures, languages, beliefs and practices.
With tours in Japan, Canada and the North American region, including performances at the Blue Note Jazz Club, Carnegie Hall, Boston’s Symphony Hall, and features at the Beantown Jazz Festival, TEDxBoston and United Nations events, Women of the World continues to spread the message of peace and unity through music.
Ganessa James official site | Ganessa James on Facebook | Ganessa James on Twitter | Ganessa James on Soundcloud
I think I was born loving music.
I probably started singing in the womb, harmonizing with my twin sister Tiffany James.
I know I soaked up music like a sponge, sang all the time as a kid, and eventually went on to join acapella groups in the schools I went to. Singing harmony felt like sustenance.
When I was nineteen, I bought my first bass and learned how to play it. When I was twenty, I bought my first acoustic guitar, and learned how to play that. I started writing and recording my songs while learning how to play my instruments.
Eventually, I played some open mics with my sister and our band Onliest. Some really cool people saw me playing bass and asked me to join their bands. I took the leap. It took me places: across the country with Saul Williams, on some of the coolest stages in New York with Onliest, Shelley Nicole’s blaKbushe, Derrin Maxwell, Paul Josephs, JOI, Toshi Reagon, and across the Atlantic with Tamar-Kali and the BRC. I even played bass live on a song for Nona Hendryx in last years’s Word Rock Sword event.
I’ve played Michfest as a solo artist and in support of some of my favorite artists, including Joan As Policewoman, and Gina Breedlove, and Shelley Nicole’s blaKbushe. I put out an EP called Believer with a few acoustic ruminations, and I’m working on a new album about falling in love, being in love, looking for love (you get the picture).
It’s been a pretty cool journey so far, and the music keeps coming. Thanks for listening, and stay tuned. Where the rabbit hole goes, none of us knows.
In Love and Music,
Robi D Light
Brooklyn based DJ/Producer, Robi D Light, is quickly gaining recognition for her crowd-pleasing, high-energy live sets as well as production skills. Seamlessly fusing Hip-Hop, Soca, Trap, R&B, Classics and every genre in between, Robi keeps the audience engaged, dancing, and happy.
Robi’s career began in 2010 when she recorded a live mix and submitted it to a London DJ competition. Her mix finished second and was featured in the UK’s DJMag.com. Since then her mashups and edits have been featured on industry blogs and radio stations. Robi’s career highlights include performing for Leslie Lohman Art Gallery, Brooklyn Community Pride Center, Posture Magazine, and sharing the stage with artists such as JD Samson.
Robi D Light on Soundcloud
Miss Redbone’s music flows equally from her own unique, award-winning blend of Native American elements with funk and her deep roots in Appalachian folk and Piedmont blues favored by the matriarchy that raised her on a rich sojourn from Clinch Mountain, Virginia to Harlan County, Kentucky and beyond to Brooklyn’s Dodge City-esque mean streets. Indeed, Garden Of Love seamlessly evokes the mid-20th century old timey gold rush when such artists as her fellow Kentuckians Jim Ford and Jackie DeShannon fearlessly infused their downhome blues between canyon air ballets and retronuevo cabinessence – before their followers developed newgrass and Redbone’s twangy forebears Buffy Sainte-Marie and Rita Coolidge brought Indigenous concerns to the rock & roll arena in the 1970s. Yet don’t call this project bluegrass or the purists might have a fit.