P R E S S R E L E A S E S 2003
December 31, 2003
Antibalas Plays Afrobeat for January 31 Dance Party at MASS MoCA
(North Adams, Mass.) One of the few keepers of authentic Afrobeat sound, Antibalas will perform for an Afrobeat Dance Party at MASS MoCA on Saturday, January 31, at 8 P.M. "The music definitely unleashes the inner freak," according to founder and saxophonist Martin Perna citing an event where an older woman literally broke her foot dancing and declared she hadn't had that much fun in years as she was being carried out.
The New York Times described Antibalas as, "the Nigerian funk propelled by burly saxophones, fierce percussion and righteous anger." The Times went on to say that, "performing constantly around New York has given [Antibalas] a combined tightness and relaxation, the assurance that they can sustain and expand a groove until everyone is dancing."
Brooklyn-based Afrobeat band, Antibalas, (meaning anti-bullets or bulletproof) has up to 17 members at any given time. Founded almost 6 years ago by Perna, the multicultural group grew organically and includes Latinos, whites, Africans, African-Americans, and Asian-Americans. The music is based on the Afrobeat tradition founded in the 1960s by Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, a Nigerian musician and political activist who died in the mid-1990s. The music mixes traditional West African rhythms with American Jazz and James Brown/Parliament-inspired funk. By definition Afrobeat includes a level of political activism, a tradition which Antibalas carries on. "Re-creating the gargantuan sonic universe of [Kuti] is no easy task," according Rolling Stone which went on to call Antibalas' sound, "authentic enough to make Fela smile, wherever he is."
Lickety Split will be open at 7 P.M. for dinner and drinks. MASS MoCA's Dance Party series is sponsored by the Valley Advocate.
Tickets for Afrobeat Dance Party in concert are $12 for adults, $9 for students with I.D., or $6 for kids. MASS MoCA members receive a 10% discount. Tickets are available through the MASS MoCA Box Office located off Marshall Street in North Adams from 11 A.M. until 5 P.M. (closed Tuesdays). Tickets can also be charged by phone by calling 413.662.2111 during Box Office hours or purchased on line any time at www.massmoca.org.
MASS MoCA, the largest center for contemporary visual and performing arts in the United States, is located off Marshall St. in North Adams on a 13-acre campus of renovated 19th-century factory buildings.
For Immediate Release