Black WOMEN Rock! at Yerba Beuna Performing Arts Center May 12th Concert I
Jessica Care Moore
jessica Care moore is the CEO of Moore Black Press, Executive Producer of Black WOMEN Rock!, and founder of the literacy-driven, Jess Care Moore Foundation. An internationally renowned poet, playwright, performance artist and producer, she is a distinguished 2016 Kresge Arts Fellow, A 2017 Knight Arts Foundation winner, and the 2013 Alain Locke Award Recipient from the Detroit Institute of Arts. moore is the author of The Words Don’t Fit in My Mouth, The Alphabet Verses The Ghetto, God is Not an American, Sunlight Through Bullet Holes, and her forthcoming collection,We Want Our Bodies Back. Her poetry has been heard on stages like Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the London Institute of Contemporary Arts. She has performed all over the world. jessica Care moore believes poems belong to everywhere and to everyone. moore recently won a 64,000 Knight Arts Grant for her large scale Afrofuturistic ballet, Salt City, a techno-chorepoem.
She is a highly respected poet among Hip Hop artists, recording with Nas on his 1999 Nastradamus album. Her recent recordings include the track “Eternal Reflection” on Jeezy’s Church in These Streets, and “Poetry Suite” on Karriem Riggins Head Nod Suite project. She is signed to Talib Kweli’s Javotti Media Label, who put out her first album, Black Tea – The Legend of Jessi James, which features Jose James, Roy Ayers, Talib Kweli, Wordsworth, One Belo and Ursula Rucker.
Born in Detroit, jessica Care moore first came to national prominence when she won on the legendary “It’s Showtime at the Apollo” competition a record breaking five times in a row. Her searing performance of the poem “Black Statue of Liberty” earned moore several meetings with high profile publishing companies, but in 1997, she paved her own path and launched a publishing company of her own, Moore Black Press. She released her first book, The Words Don’t Fit In My Mouth, and sold more than 20,000 copies. Along with her own work, she proudly published famed poets such Saul Williams, Shariff Simmons, Def Poetry Jam’s co-founder Danny Simmons, NBA player Etan Thomas, Ras Baraka and former Essence Magazine editor Asha Bandele.
jessica Care moore’s work is not limited to her own publications. She has been published in several literary collections, including, 44 on 44, (Third World Press, 2011), A Different Image, (U of D Mercy Press, 2004), Abandon Automobile, (WSU Press, 2001), Listen Up! (Random House, 1999), Step Into A World, (Wiley Publishing, 2001), Role Call (Third World Press, 2002), Bum Rush The Page: A Def Poetry Jam (Crown Publishing, 2001). She is the youngest poet published in the Prentice Hall Anthology of African American Women’s Literature, by Valerie Lee, alongside literary greats such as Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker, Octavia Butler, Maya Angelou and many others.
jessica Care moore has graced the cover of The New York Times, The Metro Times, Michigan FrontPage, Detroit News, Detroit Free Press, African Voices Magazine, Black Elegance Magazine, and has been featured in print and online magazines across the world, including, Essence,Huffington Post,Blaze, The Source, Vibe, Bomb, Mosaic, Savoy, One World, Upscale,Ambassador Magazine, UPTOWN and others. Her multimedia show, God is Not an American, was produced by The Apollo Theater and Time Warner’s NYC Parks Summer Concert Series. She was the host, writer and co-Executive Producer of the poetry driven television show, Spoken, which was executive produced by and directed by Robert Townsend and aired on The Black Family Channel. moore’s poetry is featured on Nas’ Nastradamus album, Talib Kweli’s Attack The Block Mix Tape, and she is a returning star of Russell Simmons’ HBO Series, “Def Poetry Jam.”
As an activist, jessica Care moore has lent her powerful voice to the international fight against AIDS. She performed for the United Nations World AIDS Day Commemoration two years in a row and was one of the organizers of Hip-Hop-A-Thon, a concert in San Francisco which helped increase AIDS education in the Black and Latino Bay-Area communities. moore has also performed in front of thousands of people during AIDS WALK Opening Ceremonies in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Florida and Atlanta. She is currently on the Executive Board of the Detroit Chapter of the NAACP.
jessica Care moore currently lives, writes and creates in downtown Detroit, where she is proud to be raising her 11–year old award winning poet, actor, musician and hockey playing son, King Thomas Moore-Poole.
Check out more of JCM at mooreblackpress.com
Steffanie Christi’an is a rock maven with magnificent presence. In an era where it is challenging for original music to gain and keep people’s attention, this singer/songwriter breaks through the ubiquitous white noise that crowds the musical landscape. Audiences willingly submit to her infinite energy and fiery passion while they are captivated by her hypnotic vocals. Take some Tina Turner, add a dash of Rage Against the Machine, along with a sprinkling of Alanis Morissette, and you have the perfect combination of Rock and Roll and Motown personified by Steff Chris.
A native of Detroit, Michigan, Steffanie is a natural born singer who was blessed to begin performing at local events around the city while she was a young child. At age nine, Steffanie secured her first professional gig as a paid performer at boxing legend, Tommy Hearns’ birthday party. Her Detroit roots have cultivated her music; giving birth to collaborations with local legends like, Big Proof from D12 and J Dilla’s original producing partner, Amp Fiddler.
Steffanie was 18 years old when she explored the concrete jungle of New York City. After signing to Famous Music Publishing, she spent a few years writing with some of the industry’s top songwriters and producers. Yet, Steffanie yearned to fulfill her creative destiny by expressing her own unique musical talent. She returned home to Detroit and immediately reconnected with fellow artists who were close to her heart, including Big Proof.
With an unwavering work ethic, Steffanie has performed at hundreds of events. A popular staple in poet, jessica Care moore’s Black Women Rock collaborative, she is also the former front woman of the rock band, FluxPhonic. As a solo performer, she has toured with regional funk and soul bands and has opened for a diverse range of acclaimed artists including Tom Morello, Thousand Foot Krutch, Erykah Badu and Talib Kweli. Her highly anticipated debut album, Way Too Much was released in 2014. It was a fitting reflection of her signature style.
In 2015, Steffanie toured nationwide with Talib Kweli and internationally with the Sisters, Songwriters and Sirens tour created by the Black Rock Coalition, a New York based artists’ collective and non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the creative freedom and works of black musicians.
Dedicated to honing her craft, Steffanie became a full-time artist in 2016, after leaving her 9-5 job as a Marketing Coordinator. This year represented an evolution for her as she toured with seminal acts such as, Taylor Mac and worked on her second album, It’s Complicated. Featured in Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music, Steffanie contributed to what The New York Times deemed as one of “the best performances of 2016.”
Steffanie’s recent sold out tribute concert to rock icon Tina Turner, Nice and Rough: A Night with Steffanie and Tina was a dynamic display of her bold artistry. She is reeling with excitement for what’s to come as she prepares to command new endeavors in 2017 and beyond
Zakiya Harris is a Shapeshifter. She is an afro-eclectic mix of soul, dance and theater. Her music has been compared to the works of Janelle Monáe, Erykah Badu and MIA. Along with her dynamic band Elephantine she seamlessly blends the genres of Soul, Electronica, Hip-Hop and Afro-Beat music within her repertoire.
Sh8peshifter has shared stages with Talib Kweli, Dead Prez, Digable Planets, Gil Scott-Heron, and Tatiana Ali. She’s also been featured at Art Basel, Life is Living, The New Parish, Brick and Mortar, Cafe Du Nord and The Legendary CBGB’s Gallery.
She is also a Changemaker, working at the intersections of entrepreneurship, education & creative transformation. Zakiya is a co-founder of nationally recognized projects Impact Hub Oakland, Grind for the Green, Hack The Hood, Earthseed Consulting, and a Fellow of Green For Alland Bold Food.
Brooklyn born and bred artist Tamar-kali is a second-generation musician with roots in the coastal Sea Islands of South Carolina. As a composer, Tamar-kali has defied boundaries to craft her own unique alternative sound. The aggressive, melodic, rock of her ‘5 piece’ outfit enchants you with its melody, while delivering a swift kick to the gut with its incisive emotional core. Her debut LP Black Bottom, challenged the alt-rock norm.
The pieces she composes and arranges for her string sextet and voice project: Psychochamber Ensemble, marries the classical music of her Catholic upbringing with post-punk sensibilities. The start of 2017 marked her debut as a film score composer. Her ‘expressive and varied score swells around dramatic widescreen views of the Mississippi delta’ [Variety], in Dee Rees’ Mudbound which premiered to rave reviews at the Sundance Film Festival. Her powerful vocals have been featured in the Rees’ award-winning film Pariah (2011, Focus Features) and in HBO’s biopic Bessie (2015), starring Queen Latifah.
A larger audience initially caught a glimpse of her artistry in the documentary AfroPunk. Her incendiary performances and contribution to the film’s soundtrack introduced a generation to her unique story and undeniable talent.
Tamar-kali speaks her lyrical truth with a supreme passion and a voice that will shake your foundation and shatter your expectations with its soulful intensity. Her eclectic sound and versatility has allowed her to perform on a variety of domestic and international stages with a diverse list of artists from Paramore, Vernon Reid, and Roger Waters to Vijay Iyer, Me’shell Ndegeocello and The Roots.
As a trailblazer, the genre-morphing singer, songwriter and producer, JOI, has always been ahead of the mainstream cultural and artistic landscape. Debuting with the 1994 critically acclaimed The Pendulum Vibe (Limp/EMI), JOI and producer Dallas Austin created a sharp, kaleidoscopic set of unclassifiable jams (soon-after dubbed ‘Neo-Soul’) powered by lead single “Sunshine & the Rain”. The protest-fueled song was critically acclaimed and remains a staple at her live experiences to this day. An all-black, all-woman version of the album cut “Freedom” was issued for Mario Van Peebles’ film, “Panther”. Mary J Blige, En Vogue, TLC, and a teenage Aaliyah were among the 60+ featured vocalists.
Within just a few short years, JOI became one of the first black models in a major Calvin Klein ad campaign (CK One), married then-husband Big Gipp of Goodie Mob, and birthed daughter Keypsiia Blue Daydreamer. She independently released the adventurous Rock/Funk skewing sophomore album Amoeba Cleansing Syndrome in 1997. Backed by indie rock collective Fishbone & produced by Dallas Austin, the album was an instant classic amongst those blessed with copies of the once-bootlegged project. Gilliam worked on projects for the likes of Goodie Mob, Outkast, Curtis Mayfield George Clinton and others after the album’s tour cycle ended.
During the 2000’s, JOI was signed to the Universal label that produced the funky effort Star Kitty’s Revenge, her most commercially viable album to date. Star Kitty featured signature tunes “Lick,” “Techno Pimp,” and “Jefferson St. Joe”, an ode to her father Joe Gilliam, the NFL’s first black starting quarterback. Soon, JOI was asked to join R&B super-group Lucy Pearl alongside Raphael Saadiq and Ali Muhammad. The trio would perform on Tonight Show Starring Jay Leno & release two singles (“Without You” & “You”) before disbanding indefinitely. In 2006, she independently released the emotional tour-de-force Tennessee Slim Is The Bomb under her own Joilicious Records imprint. She subsequently promoted the album with an extensive US tour.
The last decade has found JOI free of the fledgling label system and fully immersed in Artisan Polishing, her performance mastery and vocal personalization classes where she educates established and developing talents.. Additionally, DJ’ing and vocal work on productions by Max Martin (Ariana Grande, Tori Kelly), Polow Da Don (Monica, Chris Brown) and others. A 20th Anniversary world tour with Outkast preceded her own #20YearsOfJOI show, celebrating the 20th anniversary of The Pendulum Vibe. Joi documented the show for a soon to-be-released feature. A 2015 European tour with D’Angelo And The Vanguard kept Joi (Vanguard vocalist) performing internationally much of the year while continuing on her #20YearsOfJoiAndCounting tour throughout the states.
In March 2016, Joi was featured in “The Art of Organized Noize” documentary chronicling the origins and legacy of the Dungeon Family’s sound and how the Atlanta-based collective changed music forever. Between solo tour dates, she plans to complete recording her highly anticipated fifth solo effort, S.I.R. Rebekkah HolyLove, for Sept. 2017 release. Joi’s music continues to influence culture and soundtrack our lives with placements on film and television including Lifetime’s With This Ring (“I Love You Forever, Right Now” & “I’m So Famous”) and Love By The 10th Date (“I’m So Famous”), as well as Netflix’s Dear White People (“Freedom” – Ep. 4).
Motivated to live out her dreams by any means necessary and help dreams in others become a reality, Ideeyah was also inspired by a dream of her own for her stage moniker. Ideeyah (pronounced ‘idea’) is a Detroit born and bred songstress, songwriter, performer and vessel of healing through her electrifying vocals. The young age of six is when the talented artist started honing her musical ability and it has been an ever-evolving journey since then.
Defining her style as “electronic soul”, influenced by house, soul and funk, you can find Ideeyah zoning out to a plethora of genres from Alice Coltrane to Zap Mama. Her on-stage presence captures attention and easily turns spectators into believers as she exudes an aura of love from her microphone into the amplifiers. Ideeyah’s craft has garnered her mass appeal from her peers in the music world- summoned upon to perform alongside the likes of Jessica Care Moore, Monica Blaire, Joi, Erykah Badu, Norma Jean Bell, Divinity Roxx, Christopher Williams, Malcolm Jamal Warner, Dwele, Theo Parrish, Waajeed, Zo!, Carmen Rodgers, The Foreign Exchange, & Amp Fiddler. She is currently the head mistress of the mic for Collective Peace. Black Women Rock also rests on her musical resume, having been part of the women-only musical showcase since 2010.
There comes a point in every artist’s life where the rubber meets the road and you have to embrace your calling and face the future with no certainty except the fact that there is something in you that must come out and you have to impart on the world. With her full length album entitled BRAVE (released in June 2017), listeners get an experience of Ideeyah embodying the sound of honesty, soul & inspiratio
known as “the ROCK ballerina” The press, the public and powerful names in the entertainment industry agree, Singer- songwriter Kimberly Nichole is a force to be reckoned with.
Exploding on the national scene on season 8 of The Voice, Kimberly Nichole garnered superlative praise from the likes of Pharrell Williams, Christina Aguilera, Lionel Richie, Mark Ronson and Reba McEntire, with her show-stopping performances, stylish presence and vocal power. Fans clamored for her iconic rock covers and led her to the iTunes’ Top 20 three weeks in a row and even landed on the Billboard 100 Charts!
Born and bred in Seattle, Washington, Kimberly Nichole moved to New York City where she launched her career. National and international performances soon followed, allowing her to share the stage with such artists as Slash (Guns N Roses), Living Colour, Alice Smith, Janelle Monae, Nona Hendryx (Labelle), Aloe Blacc, Bilal, Joe Walsh (The Eagles) and Jon Bon Jovi. Her mesmerizing performance style has captured the attention and support of Quincy Jones, songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson and fashion savant Andre Leon Talley. Talley was so taken with Nichole’s talent and fashion-forwardness that he invited her into the offices of VOGUE and featured her in the magazine.
Her original music has been featured on MTV, VH1, BET, LOGO, Lifetime and Showtime. After hearing her music, Tony award winning director George C. Wolfe personally selected her to be the featured rock performer in his film “You Are Not You,” which stars Oscar-winner Hilary Swank.
Inspirational and genuine, Divinity Roxx has made the leap from side woman to Beyonce, to front woman of her own genre-bursting, honest, and compelling musical journey.
Her career as a bass-player skyrocketed after attending a bass camp led by the legendary Victor Wooten where she was invited to tour with him merely three months after the bass camp.
After touring with Victor for 5 years, she auditioned for Beyoncé and was selected as a band member and assistant Musical Director. Divinity has appeared on countless television shows including: The Grammy’s, Saturday Night Live, Good Morning America with personal highlights including a special performance at The White House for President Barack Obama.
Divinity also acted as the Musical Director for K-Pop sensation, 2NE1 and joined them on their first worldwide New Evolution Tour in 2012. She played The Arsenio Hall Show, 106 and Park and The Queen Latifah Show with rapper B.o.B. and has backed legends like Patti Labelle, Kelly Rowland, Erykah Badu and Gladys Knight on BET’s Black Girl’s Rock television show.
Despite these appearances with so many legendary and iconic figures, it is in her solo performance Divinity shines the brightest. Her ability to simultaneously play bass guitar while fronting her own band captivates audiences around the world. Her 2015 release ‘ImPossible’ received critical acclaim as the ultimate mash-up of hip-hop, rock and funk, featuring an appearance by her mentor and Grammy award winning artist Victor Wooten.
Divinity’s live performances are electrifying and uplifting. A fan recently wrote to Divinity after a show in Toronto: “Amazing show. The surge of life and light that comes from Divinity had me three feet off the ground. So glad I was there. You’re fantastic Divinity. Hope I wasn’t too loud. Much love; -Tonyintoronto.
She sports a colorful mohawk shaped like a bass clef. Explosive stage presence isn’t enough to describe the way Nik West moves, wows, and shocks crowds everywhere. “She is a real life gumby on stage, all while singing, dancing, and slapping the hell out of her bass guitar!” With credits that include work for artists such as, Dave Stewart of Eurythmics fame, Prince, Glee, and more, bassist, singer, and songwriter Nik West is anything more than just another pretty face.
Noted music journalist Alex Henderson (Billboard) sums West’s incredible talent up saying “Nik West is one 21st Century artist who isn’t lacking in the chops department. She is a young electric bassist who clearly knows her way around her instrument and plays like she has been inspired by the funky likes of Larry Graham, Louis Johnson (of Brothers Johnson fame) and Marcus Miller.” She is also a highly expressive singer. Known for impressively recording a cover of “Back In Black” by AC/DC, Nik shocked many rock fanatics and became a new favorite of Steven Tyler and Lenny Kravitz.
She has also shared stages with John Mayer, Sugarland, Macy Gray, Bootsy Collins, George Clinton/Parliament Funkadelic, and Orianthi. In June 2016 Nik joined Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, and Slash as a cover girl for American Musical Magazine. She has appeared on the covers of virtually every bass magazine and has been featured in numerous publications for Vanity Fair, Teen Vogue, Rollingstone, Afropunk and more. “Nik West is definitely bringing back the funk groovement and I love everything about what she stands for!” -Bootsy Collins