A Live Musical Journey through Hip-hop’s Many Intersections
Featuring Kris Funn & The Corner Store Jazz Quintet, Paige Hernandez, Baye Harrell and Akua Allrich
Collide with music’s past and present through hip hop samples and actual liner notes from your favorite artists. This electrifying show combines live music, poetry and a multimedia design that enhances a medley of your favorite jams while bridging together generations of music lovers.
Liner Notes premiered at the Atlas Performing Arts Center in 2012 and has since become a successful series with several installments. To date, Liner Notes has sold out over twenty performances and has paid tribute to approx. 200 artists and their music. Featuring Paige Hernandez, Baye Harrell, Akua Allrich and Kris Funn’s Corner Store Jazz Quintet.
Liner Notes Cast and Crew
Akua Allrich (writer, vocalist) has proven herself to be a musician of extraordinary talent and crowd-moving passion. With finesse and charisma, this vocalist, composer and teacher, has successfully etched out a place for her unique musical expression, electrifying audiences with sold-out performances. The launching of her freshman album, A Peace of Mine, and second album, Uniquely Standard, Akua Allrich Live! has earned the young artist international acclaim including distribution in Japan. Akua Allrich has inspired music lovers from all walks, who enjoy her exceptional work and expect nothing short of brilliant artistry from each of her offerings. www.akuallrich.com
Ayesis Clay (technical director, writer) is a proud graduate of North Carolina Central University where she received her BA in Theatre. An actor in the Washington, DC area, Ayesis also is the Theatre Department Chairperson for the Center for the Visual and Performing Arts in PG County, Maryland and sits on the county’s Theatre Advisory Board. During her time at the CVPA of PG County, Ayesis has had the opportunity to work in a number of capacities such as directing, scenic design, light design and operator, company management and House manager. Presently, she is the touring stage manager for the critically acclaimed show, “Paige in Full”.
Kristopher Funn (writer, musical director, bass) was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland and currently resides outside of DC with his beautiful wife and their awesome dog. After graduating from Howard University with anhonors degree in computer science, Kristopher decided to pursue a career as a professional jazz musician. He has performed and toured internationally to every major jazz festival in the world with artists such as Kenny Garrett, Christian Scott, Nicholas Payton, Jeff Majors and Pharaoh Sanders. Kristopher has also appeared and written songs on several recordings including the Christian Scott’s latest album, Christian Atunde Adjuah. He continues to perform in the Washington D.C. area while touring with the Christian Scott Quintet. www.funndamentals.com www.cornerstoremusic.com
Baye Harrell (writer, lyricist) has embraced the title of Hip Hop Theater Artist to best encompass his multiple jobs. He has performed for audiences throughout the nation from Anchorage, AK to Off-broadway as well as at his hometown’s Studio Theater and the 9:30 Club. He originated the role of Zomo for Imagination Stage’s “Zomo the Rabbit,” Kwame in Jennifer Nelson’s “25-7-365,” and script consulted for “In Pursuit of Me: Story of Christylez Bacon.” As an emcee, his group Hueman Prophets has released two studio albums and opened for such notable artists as Questlove of The Roots, Common, and Trey Songz. He is a producer for the radio drama entitled “The Answer,” web docu-series “The Angle,” and last September received rave reviews for his play “Hueman Prophets’ Read: White and Blue” presented through CulturalDC’s Mead Theater Lab. www.twitter.com/bayeharrell
Angelo Hernandez (guitar) “StrumminSoulSince66” is a native Baltimorean who is inspired by James Brown and the “British Invasion”. Angelo is self taught and has played guitar for nearly five decades. In that time, he has done several TV appearances, recordings, opened for national artists and performed in over 100 live performances. After a twenty year hiatus, Angelo was brought back to his instrument through his family and hip hop. He embraces hip hop as cultural preservation and believes that, “Hip Hop is the new Liner Notes”. Angelo is a guitarist with Wolf -Pack, Ethnick Media and B-FLY ENTERTAINMENT. His music is featured on such projects as All the Way Live!, Havana Hop and Imagination Stage’s Zomo the Rabbit and John Henry. Angelo is honored to perform with his daughter, son in law and The Corner Store in the Liner Notes series!
Paige Hernandez (producer, director, writer and performer) is a multifaceted artist, who is known for her innovative fusion of poetry, hip-hop, dance and education. As an AEA equity actress, Paige has performed on many stages throughout the country and recently received an Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council. She has also been awarded for her innovative work in classrooms including the honor of being named a “classroom hero” by The Huffington Post. With her company B-FLY ENTERTAINMENT, Paige continues to develop original and fresh work including The Nayika Project, which just had its World Premiere at the Intersections Festival at the Atlas. www.paigehernandez.com
John Russell Lamkin, III (drums)is a native of Baltimore Maryland. He began playing drums at the tender age of four. John attended The Manhattan School of Music in New York City and later, Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. John has been recognized by, toured, played and recorded with a number of exceptionally talented recording artists including Donald Harrison, Najee, Michael Henderson, Kenny Garrett, Christian Scott, Chick Corea, the late great Lionel Hampton, the late great Abbey Lincoln, and many others. John maintains a deep respect and appreciation of those who’ve set standards in the music world.
Blaine Menelik (Projection Design Assistant) Blaine focuses her talents in video projection/design, digital media, motion graphics and web design. She completed her B.S. degree in Computer Technology with courses in visual communication and digital media arts. She previously assisted Tewodross Melchishua with video projections for Nacirema, a multimedia performance part of Source Theater Festival as well as Liner Notes at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. www.msmenelik.tumblr.com www.twitter.com/BMenelik
Tewodross “Teo” Melchishua (video, projection design) is a digital media producer, video projection designer, filmmaker, animator, VJ & educator. He has produced video design for theatrical productions such as The Pitman Painters (1st Stage Theater), Caesar and Dada (WSC Avant Bard), Paige In Full: A B-Girl’s Visual Mixtape (B-Fly Entertainment) and others. He created video remixes and served as a VJ for Shaolin Jazz – The 37th Chamber project, a mixtape of Wu-Tang Clan with Blue Note label artists and other jazz musicians; as well as other venues, parties and live events. Tewodross currently serves as an associate professor & program coordinator of visual communication and digital media arts program at Bowie State University. vimeo.com/channels/thatsoulcinematic | twitter.com/soulcinematic
Sam Prather (piano, transcription,vocalist) is an exciting and multifaceted musician from Washington DC. Sam has developed a reputation in the local music scene performing and producing with all types of acts. On the funk/soul side Sam has worked on keyboards with YaMama’Nym, 76 Degrees West, and Brandon Combs while on the jazz side he has graced the stage with Heidi Martin, Warren Wolf, Antonio Parker, and Joey Omicil. Sam graduated from UDC where he studied piano with Allyn Johnson and is currently in the Graduate program at Howard University where he plays in the Jazz Ensemble, and studies piano with Charles Covington. www.samprather.com
Herbert Scott (saxophone, lyricist) is a saxophonist from the Washington D.C. area. As a student Herbert participated in various arts programs including the Patricia M. Sitar Center, the Levine School of Music, Duke Ellington High School for Performing Arts and The Washington Jazz Arts Institute. Herbert has also competed scholastically and professionally winning the Rose D’Amour Scholarship, a Laurel Fund Scholarship, Ken and Sandy Beal Scholarship, placing second in the Levine School of Music annual concerto competition, and winning the most outstanding musician award in high school. Herbert has completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Jazz Studies from Michigan State. http://herbspiceandcinnastix.blogspot.com/
Dante’ Pope (percussion and vocalist, Vol. 1 and 3) is a charismatic and exciting musician in Washington. A Native of Chicago, Illinois, he blends his gospel roots with a soulful swing that has entertained Washingtonians at venues such as the Howard Theatre, Blues Alley, and Bohemian Caverns. Dante’ provides personalized private lessons in addition to his work as percussion instructor at the District of Columbia Music Center. He attended the Merit School of Music in Chicago, Illinois where he had Master Classes with Yo Yo Ma, Evelyn Glennie and Robin Eubanks. At Fisk University, he was a member of the world renowned Fisk Jubilee Singers. Dante’ has also played with many other great musicians such as Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, Anthony Hamilton, Eric Clapton, and Moses Hogan.
Past performers with Liner Notes:
Dr. William E. Smith (Saxaphone- Intersections) is a musician/producer/educator. He has recorded and or performed with many notable artists: Hezekiah Walker, Fred Hammond, James Moody, Donald Byrd, Cynda Williams, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Malcolm Jamal Warner, Wayna, Mike Phillips, Aster Aweke, Gigi. He has released five albums with his jazz group The W.E.S. Group and as a solo artist W.E.S. He continues to produce and record music for other artists as well and creates music for TV and film. He is a published author (Hip Hop as Performance and Ritual) and the Music Industry and Ethnomusicology coordinator at North Carolina Central University.
DeAndre Shaifer (Piano- Dunes)DeAndre “Dre King” Shaifer, originally from Gary Indiana is a multi-talented instrumentalist/composer/producer. Dre earned a bachelors degree in Jazz Studies from UDC and has since developed into a successful producer having worked with Raheem Devaughn, Kindred the Family Soul, Wale, Fat Joe and Raekwon. Dre currently lives in Dallas Texas with his lovely wife of 3 yrs, Lauren. www.twitter.com/dreking
Braxton Cook (saxaphone Aug 2012) As a young emerging saxophonist, Braxton has already garnered several accolades. He has been honored to be one of 30 other high school musicians selected from a nationwide competition to participate in the 2009 Grammy Jazz ensemble, held during the same week as the Grammy Awards. During his freshman year at Georgetown University, Braxton was selected as NFAA’s 2010 YoungARTS Finalist and participated in an all expenses-paid week in Miami, Florida. Then in Fall of 2011, Braxton transferred to the prestigious Juilliard School on the Irene Diamond Scholarship. During his time there, Braxton will continue to study music privately with Ron Blake, Steve Wilson and perform at various local clubs in the NYC area.
Farai Malianga (hand percussion Aug, 2012) born and raised in Zimbabwe, began his career in African Dance in Colorado with Leticia Williams’ Harambee. Musical Director Judy “Fatu” Henderson. Upon arriving in New York he began studying with pioneers Yousouf Koumbasa, Mbemba Bangoura and Ronald K. Brown. Performing with the Masters; Chuck Davis in BAMs ‘Dance Africa’, Reginald Yates with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Heritage O.P. With Dance Companies; Harambee , Umoja , The New Jersey Chamber Orchestra, Obediah Wrights Balance, BSRC, Def Dance Jam and Opus With Musicians; Roy Ayers, Wunmi Olaiya,, Manchild Black, Akua Allrich, Melanie Charles, Scott Patterson, Saycon Sengbloh, Amma Whatt!, Nomsa Mazwai and Nakia Henry And on the Broadway Stage in the musical ‘Fela!’ Malianga’s composition credits include commissioned works for Camille Brown, Karen Loves’ Umoja, Christal Browns’ Inspirit Dance Companies and “Jenaguru” An African Creation Myth for the Smithsonian.
Special Guests for the November 2012 Show: Adia Gill, Agyei Akoto, Makayla Lorick Eboni- Thair Lewis, Ashanti Hernandez and Charles Funn.
Special guests for the October 2013 Family show: Adia Gill, Agyei Akoto, Makayla Lorick, Alvin Deskins, Ashanti Hernandez, Isaiah K. Devers, Charles Funn, John Lamkin II.