Winter Nite

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!Get Tickets!

Once again, we bring the heat and good vibes to this Tdot winter of contentment in frigid temperatures. We have the very best djs and the real deal raw samba of Batucada Carioca. It all happens at Super Wonder Gallery right on College Street near Clinton. What makes this jam fun is the liberty of expression, come out and feel no shame and dance bc no one cares. Click the link above for your advance tickets.Batucada Carioca, are old school alumnae of Uma Nota dating back to the days when the jam was at the Gladstone Hotel. They are led by the effervescent Maninho Costa, a true samba percussion master, born into the tradition inn Rio de Janeiro. For this little gig he has brought together his "nove de ouro" or the "nine of gold," a small group of Batucada's ace players locked in a groove so tight that the surdos and repenique promise to pull you from within and create a bridge between earth and some other-wordily realm of pure bliss. Check our old school blog post that gives you a full breakdown of Batucada, including more pics and video.BatucadaJ Laijenny cutJennifer Laiwint, or better known these days as J Lai, is an artist through and through, dabbling in visual art, Capoeira Angola, and in the last few years making an impact as a dj that moves the dance- floor. She brings a dancehall tip, some baile funk, RnB, electro-tropical and global and Baltimore club mixes for all. Check her mix below.The indelible General Eclectic. General Eclectic is the resident dj and co-founder of Uma Nota, and one of the most popular and well versed djs in Toronto. His crates go deep and his ability to play across genres and always bring the crowd to a groove is legendary. We won't go on about him too much, but he's been called a million dollar dj.And.... (drum roll) debut-ing this jam... dj Win-win! Our homegirl Winnie is gonna show us what she's got and get the jam rolling. Mad styles Winnie, originally from Halifax, is known her fun house parties, playing with Maracatu Mar Aberto, hanging in Kensington Market, and generally cutting a rug on the dance-floor at a number of jams around the world. Let's call it global influenced electronic dance music. Come early and check out the Win-win situation. See you all at Uma Nota Winter Nite!The Win-win situation.  

Bargain Bash! Uma Nota and Footprints in An Honest Farewell

Anyone who's lived in Toronto for some time knows about Honest Ed's. For decades of Toronto's history, the big, tacky store at Bathurst and Bloor was THE destination for cheap housewares, gaudy colour schemes and corny puns on hand-painted signs. ("Welcome, don't faint at our low prices, there's no place to lie down" and "Only the floors are crooked!" are just a couple of examples.)In a recent post, Judith Cohen, an ethnomusicologist, folk musician and longtime member of the Uma Nota community (she's also the mother of performing artist Tamar Ilana), remembers some of the things she'd find at her "corner store" of 33 years.

“Everything” included... VHS tapes (back in the day)! The lowest pharmacy fees. Toothpaste.  Photo albums at a fraction of camera store prices. Batteries. Coffee mugs. Kettles. Shower curtains. Socks. Kitchen clocks. Boots. Tinned sardines. Italian and Portuguese cooking oil. Light bulbs. Toys. When my daughter was little, I could outfit her for a summer for $20.Non-stick (sort of) frying pans. Bath towels, and beach towels with improbable designs. Blue jeans with only a few loose threads.  Sturdy fall jackets. Dubious Birkenstock sandal imitations. Plastic lawn chairs. Bookshelves. Picture frames. Knitting wool. Clothes drying racks. Garish skirts and blouses labeled, with insouciant mendaciousness, “Fashion.” Hanukkah candles and chocolate coins, and for Passover, kosher matzah, grape juice and candied fruit.

The store's fame owed much to the late Ed Mirvish himself, an outgoing and jovial character whose giant retail operation paved the way for the Mirvish theatre production empire and the beloved Mirvish Village area on Markham St. beside the store. The theatre productions will continue, but the village will meet its end when the store, long since sold off, is demolished, turned into condos and retail units by its new owners. (The famous giant illuminated sign is being relocated to the Mirvish Theatre in the Entertainment District, The Globe and Mail reports.)While the "the longest goodbye in retail history," which included sales of all those hand-painted signs and the last of many clearance items, finished up on Dec. 31, 2016, there's a final series of events taking place in the giant old building in the Annex, and we invite you to participate.Design by General EclecticIt's all happening as part of a four-day sendoff called An Honest Farewell, organized as part of the Toronto For Everyone "co-creating our city" initiative by The Centre for Social Innovation."We believe that Toronto can be the global model for inclusivity, community and social innovation," the Toronto For Everyone website explains. "Honest Ed’s may be closing its doors, but Ed’s legacy is his unique ability to foster community can carry on. For years, Ed opened his doors to immigrant families, hosted street parties and gave away free turkeys. Now it’s time for us to carry the torch through all of our city and community building initiatives, starting with TO4E this February 23-26, 2017."Honest Ed's get-down finale is called Bargain Bash (tickets here), happening on Saturday, February 25 starting at 9 p.m."Join us as we bring together some of the hottest dance parties in Toronto, all under one roof, for one truly epic Saturday night farewell extravaganza," T4EO invites. "Explore the newly empty rooms transformed, bask in palpable nostalgia and find yourself on one of three dance floors, participating in a night made for the history books."Featuring:

  • Footprints DJs Jason Palma and General Eclectic. Live Afro-Brazilian drumming performance by Maracatu Mar Aberto (presented by Uma Nota).
  • Electro Swing TO, Toronto's original speakeasy dance party, featuring resident DJs Medicineman & The Great Grantsby.
  • Hip hop, dancehall, soca, reggae, afrobeats and good music brought to you by Dre Ngozi and DJ Bambii.

This is a special one-off jam for the Bargain Bash festivities.Our groove affair goes down in the former Bad Boy space on Bathurst, and features the deep dance floor vinyl selections of Footprints DJs Jason Palma and General Eclectic with the polyrhythmic release of an Uma Nota live show, represented here with powerful Afro-Brazilian Maracatu rhythms and songs.[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSfsypAACdw[/embed]At Bargain Bash, we present Maracatu Mar Aberto, whose thundering bass drums and rich, layered percussion hold the rhythm for beautiful Afro-Brazilian songs. Performing as a special guest with the maracatu drummers is Brazilian vocalist and past Uma Nota featured artist Flávia Nascimento, an award-winning singer/songwriter living in Quebec and recording original Brazilian-Canadian music.

Foot Prints LIVE DJ Mix - April 27th, 2013 Part 1 by Footprints Toronto on Mixcloud

Meanwhile, with a shared belief that you can't know your future until you know your past, Footprints DJs Jason Palma and General Eclectic showcase their unique all-inclusive approach to DJing and crate-digging at the monthly, vinyl-heavy open format dance party. Steadily packed with soulful dancers for the past 14+ years, Footprints is where Palma and G.E. connect the dots between wide varieties of music, from Funk, Soul, Disco, Afrobeat, Latin and Brazilian to Dub, Reggae, Electro, House and Hip Hop.What else can you expect? How about custom visual projections by Pleasurecraft Studio, an opening drum and horn parade  into the space to honour the local community and history, and other surprises.Stay current on party updates with our Facebook event page and join us for Bargain Bash on February 25, along with Electroswing TO and Manifesto's High Power crew, and celebrate the official farewell party for Honest Ed's.

in/future Transformative Art Experience

in-future-ben-watt-meyer-fb-crop-photo-bryne-mclaughlin-1024x538in/future is totally awesome. The arts & music festival brings together a whole lot of beautiful ingredients for a truly innovative and art-inspiring experience. Here are three reasons to go for the final weekend.It’s at Ontario Place. For Torontonians (especially over-30 peeps), it is super nostalgic, and regardless, this ‘70s/’80s on-the-lake world of the future, park of revelry, even in its current abandoned state, is an inspiring setting. In last week’s NOW Magazine cover story on the festival, one of the festival programmers, Layne Hinton, said: "We're taking all our cues from the West Island and Ontario Place and its history. It's interesting because they built the space with all these futuristic ideas and utopian models, but they were also referencing something from the recent past. So we've been interested in that relationship, the play of time the site seems to hold." We are talking instant romance for those on an alternative-style date night. Art Spin, the wonder adventurists of Toronto, have curated some beautiful installations from various artists (you have to see it). Led by Hinton and Rui Pimenta, they teamed up with Small World Music Society, who have put together a wicked musical programme removed from commercial glitz, wholly diverse and eclectic and of the greatest musicianship. (It also helps our ego that many of the artists have in the past been presented by Uma Nota!) The fourth element for this art bending experience this Friday? Uma Nota presents three incredible Brazilian live acts and a roving DJ that take your after-work transformative art experience to the next level. Check out what’s on offer below. Oh yes, and we also must say that the best part is the crowd that comes out: Diverse, fun, and beautiful people who love adventure and artistic inspiration.Luísa MaitaA Sao Paulo cool kid whose music fuses downtempo electronica, a bit of Ceu’s vibes, some Vanessa da Mata flavour and a bunch of urban Cumbancha feels. She is one of the more accessible contemporary Brazilian artists, and while the US media like NPR have caught onto her, but she is still flying under the radar here in Canada. Her sound is kind of a soul vibe, some pop even, very urban and cool. Now Mag wrote: “Coaxing imagery from Brazil's inimitable culture, [Maita] expands on the traditions of classic samba with modern influences that include Feist and Cat Power.”Bruno CapinanBruno’s sound is maturing like mad. He is leaving us doing the groovy head-nod with his new directions. Our homeboy Jonathan Rothan had this to say about Bruno Capinan in a recent NOW magazine piece: “Singer/songwriter Bruno Capinan's personal, exploratory songs have an epic indie feel that matches his equally epic stage wear. He released Tudo Está Dito, his third album, in 2014, and has since performed and recorded in Brazil with Gilberto Gil's son Bem Gil. He [was] part of a "new music of Brazil" showcase at the Rio Olympics in August, and his next album arrives in the fall.” It’s coming out very soon and for that we are also excited.Maracatu Mar AbertoMar Aberto is our maracatu of choice in Toronto [albeit a little biased!]. This show features, direct from Brazil, Garnize from Tambores de Olokun and the lead vocals of Zeca Polina and Quebec based songstress Flavia Nascimento, Mar Aberto's show promises emotional upliftment and ecstatic performance translating directly to the dancers and audience.Over the last seven years, Mar Aberto has developed Toronto-bred Maracatu language -- creating a distinct Maracatu style that is rooted in a Toronto vibe (a band of bohemian agitators linked to different underground cultural events) while learning and respecting traditional maracatu nations, expanding from original school of influence, the venerable Maracatu Estrela Brilhante of Recife in Pernambuco, Brazil. garniDJ General Eclectic on the Boom BikeGroove with one of Canada's finest DJs, and resident Uma Nota selector, who will be performing live on his newly created Boom Bike! 1500watts of pure awesomeness all contained on a hand crafted specially built tricycle setup!boom-bike

Winter Nite

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Let’s cast out the cold and enliven the heart with the most diverse jam in Toronto. If you liked our summer Block Party, this is your party off the beaten path, in a new location, designed and specially made for our enjoyment pleasure. We originally were going to call this event 'Inside the Block, Party' because the location is wholly new and literally in the middle of an industrial block, wedged between two streets. Also, like the Block Party, it is totally set up by us, from sound, to decor design, to bar and food ... start to finish. This one will be the tropical jam inside a cold-ish winter nite.

Buy Tickets

The Responsables

Laying down the reggae, funk, and dirty grooves, this outfit brings the good vibes. With four part harmonies, a blend of reggae roots, a touch of Afrobeat, and some funky breaks, it's always a dance party.

Responsables

General Eclectic

Resident selector General Eclectic is renowned in the downtown core as the man who has styles upon styles. His crates go deep and when he is on the decks, the people only know how to dance. He is the man behind Footprints, Shin Dig and a number of other jams and of course, part of the original Uma Nota trifecta. He brings the tropical, the deep sound and has promised a wickedly original wicked set for this night.

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K-Zar Dubwise

Co-founder of the roots reggae, dub and bass culture series Dub Connection and Rockers Arena, K-Zar is the embodiment of the original underground jam. One of the builders of Dub Connection’s formidable sound system, this selector brings a reggae sound to move the town, and will play the happiest set he has ever thrown down. All to make the people move their bodies to the lovers’ sound.

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and special guests Maracatu Mar Aberto

Having recently killed it at the Promise/AlienInflux/BassGators New Year's Eve party, Maracatu Mar Aberto come back one more time to shake the foundations of the Uma Nota party. Expect emotional vibrancy and next level emotion as the drums take you on a party trip that plays with the spiritual. Damn ... welcome the Open Sea to the Winter Nite.

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Plus:

Special shouts to: Clay & Paper Theatre

Venue: Geary Lane, 360 Geary Ave.

Geary Lane is the edgy side of a downtown that is lacking in spaces. Step out of the ordinary and into a liminal party, in a different area … destination location!

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Give It Up for the DeeJay.

Uma Nota Festival has got a wicked line-up of live music and some of the best selectors and beat producers. Let's take a look at the deejays on the bill for Uma Nota Festival 2014.Ushka ushkaUshka is a Sri Lankan-born, Thailand-raised, Brooklyn-living migrant. She is an activist, cultural organizer, and deejay re-defining the boundaries of global bass music and culture. Having grown up in several parts of the world, her musical influences are as transnational as she is. She deejays from the perspective of a dancer, blending a wide range of music from soca to cumbia, hip hop to South Asian rhythms, kuduro and other African styles to samba. She does so with the philosophy that global genre-blending connects cross-cultural struggles and tells important stories between communities but most importantly, she translates this onto dance floors. Ushka plays Saturday Oct 18th for the Digital Tropics Party.[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/users/1151113" params="color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false" width="100%" height="250" iframe="true" /]Poirierpoirier_002hires_by_may_truong_jpg_0Poirier is Montreal’s pre-eminent Tropical Bass producer. Pinpointing the bits and pieces of dancehall beats, soca energy and electronic intensity is futile in the face of Poirier’s dance-driven creativity and air horn-worthy excitement. He has been nominated for a couple of Junos in his time. This is a man who just understands what works in the dance. He’s released several acclaimed albums on Ninja Tune, remixed the likes of Busy Signal, Salif Keita and Pole and has toured the world several times over. In 2013 Poirier embarked on a new mission: the “chamber techno” music of Boundary. This alias was responsible for one of the remixes in the Music Gallery’s Hugh Le Caine project last year. Poirier also got in touch to say that he is coming into town with his main emcee Face-T. Expect the best with Poirier. Poirier plays Saturday Oct 18th for the Digital Tropics Party. [soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/users/494979" params="color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false" width="100%" height="350" iframe="true" /]Rebel Up! Soundclashlandscape_rebel_up_soundclashStarted in the beginning 2007 by Seb Bassleer aka SebCatLitter, the idea of RebelUp! Soundclash was to bring more diverse global styles and potentially more raw and organic sounds to the dance floor out of the big musical biotope that our world has to offer. Instead of dancing to the same well known tunes over and over, RebelUp! offers a podium to discover unsuspected sounds, feelings and expressions. Expect a night of global and political culture mash of sounds from straight-up old skool roots, Arabic roughness, amplified African rhythms, Latino cuts, Asian psychedelica, Balkanized mestizo and gritty electronics. Rebel Up! play the Friday Night Jamboree on Oct 17th . [soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/users/306076" params="color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false" width="100%" height="350" iframe="true" /]General Eclecticgeneral eclecticFounding Uma Nota member General Eclectic is one of Toronto’s most revered djs and selectors. His record collection runs deep and his musical knowledge is beyond vast. As his name implies, his tastes are ‘eclectic’ and he can bring out ska/reggae, soul/funk, afrobeat/jazz, cumbia and the Brazilian rhythms. The engine behind such signature Toronto events such as Shindig, Footprints and Building Blocks, he recently surprised us all with a killer hip-hop set at the End of Summer Block Party. As a founding partner and graphic designer he has been instrumental in the creation of the 'Uma Nota style'. General Eclectic plays the Friday Night Jamboree and The Batucada Carioca 10 year party for the Community Cultural Fair.

Uma Nota Festival 2013 Preview Mix by Dj General Eclectic on Mixcloud

  

Pedro Sá Moraes "Beyond the Pleasure Principle"

Pedro Sá Moraes “Beyond the Pleasure Principle” in Toronto, Jan.18, 2014

(Versão em português abaixo)

Navigating the currents of what is Brazilian popular music (música popular brasileira), we have always stepped beyond what agents send down the line and have used our knowledge as fans of the music and active people in the scenes, from Sampa, Rio, Recife, New York, Montreal and the Tdot. With that,  on Saturday, January 18, 2014, groundbreaking Brazilian artist Pedro Sá Moraes pulls through Round Venue.Pedro Sá Moraes is a new wave of exploration in the music. A schooled musician carrying the heritage of the gluttonous tropicalia artist, consuming influences from across the Brazilian musical spectrum and unafraid to digest it and serve it up anew with digital spices. Think Gilberto Gil with Sonic Youth (his own stated influences).Moraes was named one of the "10 Artists You Should Have Known In 2012" by NPR. He is also the curator of the "Explorative Brazilian Music" showcase at New York's APAP conference, whose aim is to present a fresh outlook on contemporary Brazilian music. Pedro uses a world of musical influence he skillfully weaves in with native Brazilian rhythms and musical forms creating a journey full of colour and wonder.On his new album, Além do Princípio do Prazer (Beyond The Pleasure Principle), Moraes blends influences from his country's musical wealth, its luscious melodies and countless rhythms, with an unusual exploration of textures that could make one think of contemporary jazz and vanguard pop and rock artists such as Radiohead and Bjork. “Guitarist and singer Pedro Sá Moraes is a great introduction to Rio de Janeiro's adventurous music scene. At turns rocking and lyrical, Moraes demonstrates his ability to mine Brazil's rich musical veins and turn traditional rhythms and forms on their heads" writes Tim Wilkins of NPR.org.Check the new tracks below (click to play audio):AlaridoA Hora da EstrelaCompleting the trio are Ivo Senra and Lúcio Vieira. Ivo, pianist and musical director of the show,  has worked with the likes of Yamandú Costa, Fernanda Abreu and Seu Jorge, among others. He won the "Brazilian Music Prize" in 2012 as an electronic music producer. Lucio is a killer drummer from Brazil's Amazonas state and is classically trained. Still, he can drop a backbeat, maracatu or four on the flour like most jazz drummers' ninja fairy tales dreams. He has played with Elba Ramalho, Zelia Duncan, Dominguinhos & Rita Ribeiro.Holding it down on this musical journey and keeping the party going late will  be selectors General Eclectic and Firecracker, fresh from a super successful evening as a team at Uma Nota's edition of Harbourfront's DJ skate night, this duo promises the finest tracks for the rhythm addicted and discerning minds. We also welcome the new year in a new venue. Round Venue is a recent Kensington Market addition, and has become a hot spot for music and dance appreciation with great sound, new style and fresh vibes.Uma Nota Culture presents:Pedro Sá MoraesWith DJ General Eclectic & DJ Firecracker (samba, MPB, funk, Latin, reggae, Afrobeat)Saturday, January 18ROUND venue152A Augusta Ave. (Kensington Market)Doors 9 p.m.Tickets: $10 advance list & purchase/$15 at the doorEmail info@umanota.ca by January 18 at 4 p.m. for advance listbuy tickets!Facebook event pagePedro Sá Moraes No dia 18 de Janeiro de 2014, Sábado, Uma Nota tem o prazer de apresentar Pedro Sá Moraes, do Rio de Janeiro, para um show no Round Venue em Kensington Market. O Pedro foi nomeado pela NPR como "10 Artistas que você deveria ter conhecido em 2012". Ele apresentará o show de lançamento de seu novo disco Além do Princípio do Prazer. Pedro também é o curador do showcase "Explorative Brazilian Music", apresentado em Nova Iorque durante a conferência da APAP, o qual foi criado para difundir a nova produção musical brasileira.No disco, Moraes combina influências da riqueza musical de seu país, suas melodias sedutoras e incontáveis ritmos, a uma original exploração de texturas que remetem ao jazz contemporâneo e a artistas do pop e rock de vanguarda como Radiohead e Bjork. Imagine um encontro de Gilberto Gil e Sonic Youth. "O guitarrista e cantor Pedro Sá Moraes é uma fantástica apresentação à aventurosa cena musical do Rio de Janeiro. Entre o pulsante e o lírico, Moraes demonstra sua habilidade de explorar os ricos veios musicais do Brasil, e revirar ritmos e formas da tradição pelo avesso" escreve Tim Wilkins, do NPR.org.Novas faixas (clica para tocar):AlaridoA Hora da EstrelaCompletando a banda é Lúcio Vieira (baterista) e Ivo Senra (direção musical e arranjos). Ivo, pianista e compositor, vencedor como produtor musical do Prêmio da Música Brasileira de 2012, categoria "Música Eletrônica" com o projeto eletroacústico Lá Onde Eu Moro, de João Hermeto. Ivo Senra já dividiu palco com nomes como: Yamandú Costa, Arthur Maia, Nicolas Krassik, Jorge Aragão, Fernanda Abreu, Leo Gandelman, Torquato Mariano, Itaal Shur, Gabriel o Pensador, Seu Jorge, Gabriel Moura entre outros. Formado em Composição pela UFRJ, vem se destacando por promover um incomum entrecruzamento entre vertentes da música erudita e do universo vanguardista da música pop. Ao longo dos últimos anos, produziu o CD Carol Naine (Independente), o CD Karaokê Tupi 2, de Gabriel Moura (Som Livre) e o CD Neon, do grupo Escambo.Lucio,  natural de Manaus (Amazonas), onde iniciou sua carreira profissional aos 15 anos de idade, passando por várias vertentes musicais. Estudou no centro de artes da Universidade do Amazonas e logo se destacou como músico profissional em sua cidade natal.  Antes de partir para o Rio de Janeiro participou da Orquestra Amazonas Filarmônica, foi integrante da Orquestra de Violões do Amazonas (maestro Adelson Santos) e da Orquestra Amazonas Jazz Band (maestro Rui Carvalho).A noite também contará com DJs General Eclectic e Firecracker. Depois de uma noite de grande sucesso na edição Uma Nota do DJ Skate Night ao Harbourfront, esse duo de DJ promete um son de alta qualidade que encantará os pés de qualquer aficionado de musica boa.Apresenta:Pedro Sá Moraes Com DJ General Eclectic e DJ Firecracker (samba, MPB, Latin, reggae, Afrobeat e mais)Sábado, 18 JaneiroROUND venue 152A Augusta Ave. (Kensington Market)Portas 9 p.m. Ingressos: $10 lista antecipada / $15 na portaManda email para info@umanota.ca até 18 Janeiro as 4 p.m. para adicionar nomes na lista avançadaCompre ingressos aqui!Ver evento no FacebookPedro Sá Moraes

Mar Aberto Christmas Classic

Mar Aberto Christmas ClassicMaracatu Mar Aberto & Uma Nota Culture present a stellar holiday party:The Mar Aberto Christmas ClassicBring your cheer and raise a glass to celebrate a time of renewal and another year gone by!Come early wine & dine, or come late party and dance. Or both.Everyone is welcome!featuringMaracatu Mar AbertoDance Migration CompanyLuanda JonesMar Aberto SoundSystemDJ General EclecticSpecial guest: Lady SonLula Lounge1585 Dundas Street WestThursday December 19th7:30 p.m.$10 at the door -- $35 with dinnerMore info on the Lula Lounge website here.Facebook event page here.Mar Aberto Christmas Classic

Os Tropies revive Tropicalia in Toronto

Tropicalia (the band) is no more; long live Os Tropies.Os Tropies invite you to celebrate their new releaseThat's the short version of an updated announcement we mentioned in our post (Tropicalia, transformation and magic) last August 2012. That's when the group played the final gig under their former name, and true to their promise, they are back: Now known as Os Tropies (their own nickname for themselves), the project relaunches with a new EP featuring original material and a series of shows at The Piston in Toronto this February.Album art by Amy MedvickThe band emerges from a writing and recording cocoon that songwriter and lead singer Amy Medvick previously described this way:"Our focus is shifting from being primarily a cover/tribute band to working more on original material. Of course, I don’t think we will ever give up playing our favourite Os Mutantes or Novos Baianos tunes, it's way too much fun! But writing in this style is truly exciting and liberating. I feel like there really isn’t any territory that isn’t open to a tropicalista, now more than ever. I’m writing in equal parts English and Portuguese and incorporating anything that inspires me."Though they will continue to feature tropicalismo classics in their live shows and recordings, the EP, appropriately titled TROPICALIA!, marks their metamorphosis from a cover band  to one that writes and performs original tunes. On the five-song CD, Medvick's lyrics in English, Portuguese and French ride energetic grooves drawing from the group's steady mix of bossa nova, psychedelic rock, and samba references, all in keeping with tropicalia tradition.Les Chattes Jolies (available for free downloadIn true Toronto tropical-lovin' fashion, Os Tropies have put together a whole mess of fun and unique musical support for the series of shows comprising their EP release residency at The Piston. Each Wednesday night show has its own theme, based around honouring one or more of the band's crucial tropicalismo references. (Says drummer Eric Woolston: "You can choose your favourite flavour of Brazilian psychedelic spirit possession, or collect the whole set!")The group's photo shoot for the EP release pays homage to the photography for the landmark album Os Panis et Circenses (on which artists like Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Tom Zé, Os Mutantes and Gal Costa all collaborated), down to sly nods to the 1968 classic like the picture frame, the boho-mystic-hippie chic of the day and the fellow agitators and allies in the movement.Supporting artists during the February residency include Aline Morales, Maria Bonita and the Band, Petra Glynt and other locals on the live act side (two guest live bands plus Os Tropies at each show), as well as a host of weekly rotating DJs including Uma Nota founding resident DJ General Eclectic, Firecracker, Maylee ToddDavid Dacks, Friendlyness and Sandro Perri.The original Tropicalia movement and its artists were nothing if not products of their era. Os Tropies, in resurrecting, celebrating and re-visioning the music in all its theatricality and exuberance, create their own Toronto-born interpretation with style to spare. A singular feat for any band, at any time of the year, much less a mid-week residency during the city's coldest months -- still, there is plenty of substance behind Os Tropies' confidence in their series.Os Tropies play The Piston (937 Bloor St. W.) in Toronto on Wednesdays February 6, 13, 20 and 27. All shows start 10 p.m. Cover charge is $5 and the EP is $5. More information is available on the Facebook event page or on the band's websiteUma Nota Culture is supporting this event series. 

Afro Connections: Wunmi in Toronto

Africa has long been regarded as ground zero for the beat and the sole birthplace of rhythm. Without exaggeration, it is the very epicentre from which an endless stream of beat-driven music has flowed since day one. But while the continent itself is as varied musically as anywhere else in the world, we tend to use just one single word to describe the many polyrhythmic influences this part of the globe has given us. That word, of course, is "Afro."Now, this word tends to gets tossed around a lot, but nowhere in the world is it more at home than in Brazil, where rhythmical styles like Samba, Maracatu and Batucada trace their lineage from the African experience.This Saturday's show at Revival in Toronto will feature a great musical encounter from these two areas of the world:For one, we'll showcase the one and only Wunmi from Nigeria. She first appeared back in the late '90s, collaborating with the likes of Bugz In The Attic, Masters At Work and Osunlade and helping to kickstart the whole neo-Afrobeat scene that would soon spread across underground movements in both the U.K. and the U.S. Her stage presence, style of musical attack and singing voice are comparable to greats that have come before her (namely Fela Kuti and Victor Oliaya, among others). What's interesting to note is that while she remains true to this long line of Afrobeat legends, she is a woman in an field traditionally dominated by men. This combination of sensitivity and vulnerability coupled with a hard-edged stage presence creates something entirely new to be experienced and is sure to make this weekends show very special indeed. (More about Wunmi on her very nicely designed website.)The other part of this Saturday's show (a co-production with United Soul) is a showcase of our Uma Nota mainstays Maracatu Mar Aberto. Billed this time out as Mar Aberto Percussion, this performance will feature a pared-down version of our beloved super group playing various drums and instruments alongside myself, DJ General Eclectic. Expect to hear a broad cross section of Brazilian music, specifically Afro-Brazilian styles like Samba, Bossa Nova and MPB alongside newer underground beat productions. This will be our first DJs-and-drumbeats type of event since our three-day festival last November, so we're all super excited to create a dynamic showcase and also reconnect with our music-loving community! See more about the event on our Facebook event page.