Reviews about Avotcja & Modupue
"In one word... FANTASTIC!" Lady Bianca-Oakland Blues Diva "Her "Oaktown Blue" ranks with the works written by the best Blues writers, Bessie Smith, Langston Hughs & Sterling Brown included. Jon Jang has some fabulous "chops"! He can play in styles, Chinese as well as Blacks', without ever being a tourist. His "You'll Never Walk Alone" would please Roy Hamilton." Ishmael Reed-legendary award winning Author (excerpt from liner notes of Avotcja & Modupue "Live @ Yoshi's") "A powerful, poetic, musical tour de force from a talented woman who knows what needs to be said and has the courage and chutzpah to say it loud and proud! Avotcja and Modupue will move you to tears, contemplation and action. Must be heard to be believed!" Melanie Berzon-Mgr: KCSM-FM (The Jazz Station) "Infused with her generous spirit & talented tongue, Avotcja's Poetry & Music will carry you over. Catch a ride, as her wide wings swoop & sail. She wails!" Leslie Simon-Women's Studies & Project Survive (City College of San Francisco) "This music mirrors the cultural crossroads of the Caribbean, a region that has absorbed the cultures of the people that have passed through there into a sensual multifaceted polyrhythmic stew. Avotcja's poetic sensibility brings out the creative powers in these extraordinary musicians and pushes them in new and exciting directions, led on by the words images and not tethered to the confines of a traditional "song" format." Gregorio "Greg" Landau-two time Grammy nominated Producer (excerpt from liner notes of Avotcja & Modupue "Live @ Yoshi's") "Rapid fire words of truth woven skillfully through a musical tapestry of sometimes "Gut Bucket Blues", sometimes Jazz at the edge. All the player on this recording are' in the pocket", and in sync with each other. No loops, no tools, no auto tuning -- just pure unadulterated, in your face music and words to grow by!"
Linda Tillery-Founder & Director of the Award winning Cultural Heritage Choir (excerpt from liner notes of Avotcja & Modupue "Live @ Yoshi's")
An outright tour de force. Poet, Musician, and DJ, Avotcja is on intimate terms with the Blues, grounded in their power, unafraid to speak the pain, the pride, the truth. She calls out the names of Oakland blues musicians like she's invoking the saints. Her words can make you laugh, cry, pray, get up and dance or vow to make your life a better thing. Avotcja and this extraordinary group of musicians that includes Jon Jang on piano and Frances Wong on saxophones and flute, have created a new international music that is indeed beyond category. Gratitude, Live @ Yoshi’s is a multi-dimensional listening experience to be enjoyed again and again. Elaine Cohen-Poet & Author Of Unfinished Dream: The Musical World of Red Calendar "Avotcja is one of brightest and most dedicated poets I have ever met , and any show that she is involved in is sure to be both at the cutting edge of creativity and entertaining at the same time. A true sister in the struggle." Ramon Piñero-Florida based bilingual Puerto Rican Poet
Carijama Awards 19??-2004 California Arts Council Grant 19?? Zellerbach Family Fund Grant 199? Serpent Source Foundation For Women In the Arts Grant 199? "Pat Bond Award" /Oakland, CA 2004 "Blues DJ Of The Year" Bay Area Blues Society's Hall Of Fame Awards/Oakland, CA 2000 & 2003 Sister Of Fire Award (Woman of Color Resource Center)/Berkeley, CA 2002 Creative Humanitarian Award from Milestones Project/San Francisco, CA 2001 Corporation For Public Broadcasting Grant 197?
Avotcja is a unique voice among our poets, musicians, playwrights and other creative folk today. She combines a fierce, persistent and consistent passion for justice with a beauty of words, sounds and image that can take your breath away. To put it simply, Avotcja is a national and international treasure. Elizabeth (Betita) Martinez-activist, author, educator 2004 You can hear the music in the Avotcja's poetry which always flows with truth, sincerity, energy and purpose. devorah major-San Francisco Poet Laureate 2002 - 2004 AVOTCJA is a sound junkie
A Storyteller/Musician A weaver of magical cloth A gatherer of poetic wisdom & musical medicine & definitely Somebody not to be missed Rafaela Ocasio 2000
"Avotcja finds music everywhere through a soundscape made up of everyday sounds, spoken word & music. She transforms the ordinary into the universal." AFRO SOLO: San Francisco 1999 AVOTCJA's poetry is music and Avotcja's music is poetry. Both are as hot as fire and as soothing as snow flakes. And in both she brings the best of her talent in Spanish and English. Listen to her. Read her . Enjoy her. Celebrate her. Camincha-Peruvian Poet Extraordinaire 2005
Avotcja & Modupue Diamano Coura West African Dance Company Proyecto Teatral de La Escena Sobria/The Clean Scene Theater Project
Caribeana Etc. Sonido Afro Latina Shakiri & Rootworkers Rahsaan Roland Kirk Sistahs With Stories John Handy Dimensions Dance Theater Terry Garthwaite Bombarengue James Spaulding
w/members of Modupue & Glen Pearson "Bridge Across The Blue" (Word & Violin 2004)
Avotcja & Modupue "Live @ Yoshi's 2003" (World Of Wordpower & Song 2004) Phavia Kujichagulia "The Human Race" (A Wisdom Company) 1992 Conjunto Social y Folklorico "Avotcja" (promotional video S.F. State University)/San Francisco, CA 1997 Bobi & Luis Cespedes "Has Anybody Heard My Song?" (World Of Wordpower & Song) 1982 Pepe Ntoto (Julian Priester) "Has Anybody Heard My Song?" (World Of Wordpower & Song) 1989 Famadou Don Moyé "Has Anybody Heard My Song?" (World Of Wordpower & Song) 1989 Terry Garthwaite "Has Anybody Heard My Song?" (World Of Wordpower & Song) 1989
Highlights of Career:
Avotcja & Modupue @ San Francisco World Music Festival w/John Santos @ ODC Theater/S.F. 2004 Avotcja & Modupue @ San Francisco Carnival w/E.W. Wainwright @ Comcast Stage/S.F., CA 2004 Avotcja & Modupue @ Malcolm X Jazz Festival w/Coto Pincheira/East Oakland CA 2004 Avotcja & Modupue @ Asian American Jazz Festival w/Destiny the Harpist, Tarika Lewis, Miya Masaoka, Francis Wong, John Jang & Jimmy Biala @ Locus/San Francisco, CA 2002 Kings & Queens Of Black Consciousness w/Amiri Baraka, Ishmael Reed, Kalamu ya Salaam, Askia Touré, Phavia Kujichagulia, Dr. Cornel West, Marvin X, etc. @ McKenna Theater/San Francisco, CA 2002 Featured Artist w/Jose Montoya & Aya deLeon @ ¡Cine Latino! Film Fest. @ Brava Theater/S.F., CA 2002 Playwright/Director "Oaktown Blue" @ Alice Arts Theater/Oakland, CA 2002 Opened for Peruvian diva Susana Baca @ El Encuentro Popular/Corinthian's Center/S.F., CA 2001 Director "The Bus To Nowhere" by Proyecto Teatral de La Escena Sobria/The Clean Scene Theater Project in The Forum @ Yerba Buena Center For The Arts/San Francisco, CA 2002 Playwright/Director "Bringing Homie Home For Kwanzaa" @ Calvin Simmons Theater/Oakland, CA 2001
Multi Percussionist w/"The Meeting" (w/Winston Williams) @ Chabot College Theater/Hayward, CA 2000 w/Bombarengue @ El Rio/San Francisco, CA 2000 Black Artists Forum w/Piri Thomas & Amiri Baraka @ The Black Dot Cultural Center/Oakland, CA 2000 Afro Solo @ New Performance Gallery, Theater Artaud, Buriel Clay Theater & ODC/S.F., CA 1999-2003 w/Dimension's Dance Theater (featuring Kamau Daáood) @ Alice Arts Theater/Oakland, CA 1999 w/Jack Forbes, Opal Palmer Adisa, Jewel Gomez, etc. @ Poetry Cafe-S.F. Book Festival/S.F., CA 1998 w/Dimension's Dance Theater (featuring Nikki Giovanni) @ Scottish Rite Theater/Oakland, CA 1997 w/Avotcja & Modupue & Yasir Chadly's Marhaba @ La Peña Cultural Center/Berkeley, CA 1997 w/John Handy @ Clarion Suites Lake Merritt Hotel/Oakland, CA 1997 w/Roland Jackson & Fred Anderson Trio @ Pro Arts Gallery/Oakland, CA 1997 w/ Ghasem Batamuntu & the Now Artet, Diane Witherspoon, etc. at Yoshi's/Oakland, CA 1997 w/"Their Children's Children" @ Laney College Theater Oakland, CA & Brady St. Theater/S.F. 1996 w/Dimension's Dance Theater (featuring Avotcja) @ Cowell Theater/San Francisco, CA 1996 w/Blues legend J.C. Burris @ Koncepts Cultural Gallery/Oakland, CA 1995 "The Jammies" w/Bobi & Luis Cespedes & John Handy @ Bimbo's/San Francisco, CA 1995 w/ Sonido Afro Latina @ Stanford University Women's Festival/Palo Alto, CA 1982 w/Rahsaan Roland Kirk @ The Village Vanguard/New York City, New York 1970
Opening act for Betty Carter @ Hilton Hotel/New York City, New York. 1970 One woman show @ Kimako's Kasbah/Harlem, CA 1970 New York's Henry Street Settlement Theater (DirectorDick Williams)/New York City New York. 1969 w/James Spaulding @ The East/Brooklyn, New York 1969 w/Jayne Cortez & Sonia Sanchez @ ???/Harlem, New York 1969 Le Monmartre Jazzhus/Copenhagen, Denmark 1969 composed & performed the soundtrack for Danish Movie MU NU 1969 w/John Handy & Michael White etc. @ Stern Grove/San Francisco, CA 1967 w/Horace Tapscott's legendary big band Jazz workshop "UGMAA"/Los Angeles, CA 1961-1965 "Music Director" of KIIXTV/Los Angeles, CA 1963 performed w/Studio One Theatre (under Direction of Vantile Whitfield)/Los Angeles, CA 1962
Oaktown Blue: When Heaven Lived On 7th Street
Oaktown Blue is more than just a Poem, more than just another choreographed Play full of hundred dollar clichés about Oakland. Oaktown Blue is a poetic dance, a musical theater piece (with or without the theater), about the beauty of Oakland. The amazing, remarkable, unsung history of a forgotten West Oakland. Oaktown Blue is a Hymn, a modern day Praise Song of a not so long ago time when West Oakland was economically & culturally “the only place to be”. 7th Street was Heaven. Oaktown Blue is also a story of days when the California Hotel was our regal cross town playground, our very own Hilton & was rocking every night with Dancehalls full of Blues Concerts & Mambo Sessions. It’s a theatrical tale
about the coming together of disoriented Black Share Croppers, lonely imported Filipino men, Black entrepreneurs, Latin Dancers, Masons, intellectuals & slicksters. Oakland was a West Coast Blues Mecca. Oaktown Blue is a love Poem. This is my way of saying thank you to all those Spirits that still roam up & down 7th Street. If you really listen, you’re gonna hear them singing wildly & moaning like a homesick whisper in the night wind. Can you hear them? Oaktown Blue is all about you! Avotcja-Writer/Director Oaktown Blue - Coming To A Theater Near You - As Soon As You Hire Us!
Playlist for Avotcja & Modupue: Live at@Yoshi’s
1. I DEAL IN SOULS (Sun Ra/Modupue World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 6:53 a. Medley (tracks 2 & 3) 2. Moonlight In Memphis (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 1:16 3. Oaktown Blue (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 6:57 4. Great Wall (Frances Wong Shih-Ming Music BMI) 9:19 5. You'll Never Walk Alone (Richard Rogers ASCAP) 6. Portrait Of A Ghetto Flower (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 9:53 7. Too Proud To Sing The Blues (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 9:22 8. Two Flowers On A Stem (Jon Jang Zhang Music ASCAP)/In The Night When All 9. Can say is MMMMM!!! (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 4:13 a. Medley (tracks 8 & 9) 10. Memories In The Many Keys Of Horiuchi (Shirley Kazuyo Muriamoto/Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP) 5:58 11. Oxnard Beet (Glenn Horiuchi Horiuchi Music BMI) 10:24 12. Talkin' About La Musica (Avotcja World Of Wordpower & Song ASCAP)/ 13. El Guataque De Coto (Coto Pincheira World Of Wordpower & Song) 5:11 AVOTCJA-Poet, Multi-Percussion FRANCIS WONG-Tenor Sax & Flute SANDY POINDEXTER- Violin JON JANG-Piano VAL SERRANT-Steel Drum & Djembe JOHN-CARLOS PEREA-Bass & Native American Cedar Flute BABA KEN OKULOLO-Talking Drum JIMMY BIALA-Drum Set, Congas. Kulintang, etc. COTO PINCHEIRA-Piano (track 10) HAFEZ MODIRZADEH-Alto Sax & Persian Karna (tracks 1,2 & 3) SHIRLEY KAZUYO MURAMOTO-Koto (tracks 8 & 9) RONNIE STEWART-Guitar (track 3) SANDOR MOSS-Drum Set (track 10) TITO GONZALEZ-Cuban Tres (track 10) FRANCIS WONG JON JANG & HAFEZ MODIRZADEH appear courtesy of Asian Improv Records SHIRLEY KAZUYO MURAMOTO appears courtesy of Murasaki Music
RONNIE STEWART appears courtesy of The Bay Area Blues Society Copyright 2004 World Of Wordpower & Song All rights Reserved. Warning. Unauthorized duplication is a violation of applicable laws. www.Avotcja.com info: Avotcja P.O. Box 422340 San Francisco, CA 94142-2340 E-mail: LaVerdadMusical@yahoo.com