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Wizards pay homage to city’s musical tradition with the naming Capital City Go-Go

Jae Alan

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On Friday, the Washington Wizards announced the name of their new G League affiliate–the Capital City Go-Go.

The Washington Wizards honor their city’s renowned musical culture by announcing on Friday, that their new G-League affiliate team will be named the Capital City Go-Go.

According to Wizards’ owner Ted Leonsis, the name was developed from successful go-go nights last season, which spurred Leonsis to meet with the local community.

Leonsis added, that the name is natural and the organization is paying homage to the long-standing culture, that was pushed to the forefront by “The Godfather of Go-Go,” Chuck Brown, whose family the Wizards embrace during go-go nights.

“I remember the first year that I bought the Wizards and moved into the office here, looking out my window and seeing Chuck walking up the street,” Leonsis recalled in the presser of the local legend who passed away in May of 2012. “Man, he was just the coolest, the coolest looking guy. I remember he had this great black hat on and the way he strode up the street, everyone running around him giving him handshakes so it just feels right for us and I think the city will bond with it.”

Esteemed in Washington, D.C., the subgenre originated in the mid-60s with the contributions of Chuck Brown and the Soul Searchers, Young Senators and Black Heat. The music is a mix of rhythm and blues and old school hip hop and focuses on the usage of lo-fi percussions. It uses a funk rhythm and emphasizes live audience call and response that can be done in dance halls or street percussions.

Younger generations may not be quite familiar with Chuck Brown because In the early 2000s, TCB, a D.C. band, created an innovation to go-go called bounce beat. The innovation gave rise to more recognizable bands such as Reaction, TOB, New Impressionz, ABM, and XIB. Bounce beat carries a deeper tone and relies on instruments such as timbales, drums, bass and keyboards.

Capital City has two logos — a primary and alternate. The primary logo features a Conga drum, the most distinct instrument used in the genre, with stripes that represent the D.C. flag and a classic Washington basketball.

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Anacostia Events

The Few…The Proud… Jo Ann Block January 26 – March 3, 2018

Jae Alan

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(Washington, DC) In what is sure to be a very current and conversation starting exhibition, mixed media artist Jo Ann Block brings The Few…The Proud… to the new Vivid Gallery. Block is known for investigating queer history, sexuality and identity, as they are inscribed within historical and contemporary culture.
The Few…The Proud… runs January 26 – March 3, 2018 in Vivid Gallery (2208 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC 20020). The opening reception will be held on January 26, 2018 from 6-9PM. Block will host an Artist Talk on February 10 from 2-4PM.Gallery hours are Wednesday – Saturdayfrom 12-7PM and by appointment.
Her work has been exhibited at American University Museum (DC), Transformer Gallery (DC) Williamsburg Art and Historical Center (NY) Metrospace (MI), Baum Gallery of Fine Art (AK), Thompson Gallery (MA) and Ventura College Art Gallery (CA).  Block currently resides in Washington, DC. She moved to the area over five years ago from California. She received her B.F.A. from UCLA, and M.F.A. from Vermont College of Fine Arts and holds a fellowship with Touchstone Gallery (DC), as well as two summer residencies at SVA in NY.
About Vivid Gallery:
Vivid Gallery is an exhibition space that opened in 2010. Previously located inside the Anacostia Arts Center, Vivid Gallery relocated to 2208 Martin Luther King Jr Ave. and remains a project of ARCH, a nonprofit organization dedication to the revitalization of Historic Anacostia. Learn more at archdc.org

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Anacostia News

D.C. cultural activist fights to preserve black art, history in gentrifying Southeast

Jae Alan

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Vernard Gray seethes with frustration every time he hears people talk about certain historic D.C. neighborhoods as “up and coming,” as if to completely overwrite the history of longtime residents who have called the places home for decades.

That is why Gray, 76, a D.C. native, artist, curator and longtime cultural activist in the local arts community, has just launched a website called Made East River that offers a comprehensive directory of people who make artistic products or offer creative services in Wards 7 and 8.

“We’ve got stuff of value east of the river,” he said. “Let’s discover it. Let’s explore it. Let’s make something happen.”

Gray has picked a pivotal time to start his project. In the face of rapidly encroaching gentrification in Southeast — and with it, the threat of massive change and displacement — he is hoping that Made East River will help the area take charge of its culture and history and preserve a narrative directed by African American residents.

Majority-black Southeast is too often treated “like the backwater of the city,” Gray said. “Gentrification is happening. There’s no way of stopping it. But when they show up, they’ll think, ‘Okay, there’s something happening here.’ And they’ve got to honor that.”

To promote his website, Gray has reached out to local artists, emailed community listservs and distributed fliers around Southeast. If the website doesn’t take off, Gray has backup ideas, among them hosting workshops where local artists can share their knowledge with residents.

 

Read more @ The Washington Post    Welcome to Anacostia

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