Performing at The Amph on Little Island was so cool! For Island Music Weekend, I invited musicians Claudia Goddard and Chris Davis. And hula dancer Marina Celander would tell the stories of the music through dance.

The weather was hot! Playing in 95 degree heat at high noon without any cover proved challenging but the show went on. You wouldn’t know from blue skies in the photos but as soon as our set was finished, the skies turned dark and thunder storms closed Little Island for a couple hours. Sadly, the acts that were scheduled to follow us had to be rescheduled.

As the island was evacuated for safety, we performers had a unique opportunity to spend time underneath Little Island. I watch the other groups dance and play music. Marina and I sang a couple of Hawaiian songs. It was a great day.

Thank you to the World Music Institute for curating and inviting us.

Little Island gets festive in this weekend-long celebration of live music and dance from island nations and territories all over the world, curated by the World Music Institute, one of the leading presenters of world music and dance.

Island Music Weekend begins on Saturday with Hawaiian music and dance by Andy Wang Trio w/ guest hula dancers, followed by the percussive drums and dancing of St. Vincent with the Wabafu Garifuna Dance Theater. Indonesian ensemble Saung Budaya Dance will represent the music and dance of Sumatra and Java, followed by guitarist Yasser Tejeda & Palotré performing contemporary roots music of the Dominican Republic. Saturday evening’s closing showcase will feature the Cuban rhythms and melodies of pianist Arturo O’Farrill & The Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra with special guests Papo Vazquez (Puerto Rico) and Yasser Tejeda (Dominican Republic).

Sunday’s Island Music Weekend begins with local, legendary, Puerto Rican Plena & Bomba ensemble, Los Pleneros de le 21, the steelpan sound of Trinidad and Tobago will reign next with the CASYM Steel Orchestra, followed by renown piper and whistler Kevin Crawford Trio playing traditional music from Ireland. Acclaimed singer and songstress Fantcha will then showcase Morna music of Cape Verde. Sunday evening starts with musical wonder Paul Beaubrun and his infectious Haitian rhythms setting the stage for Jamaican dancehall legend Sister Nancy who will close out Island Music Weekend with her classic reggae sound.

Pier55 in Hudson River Park @ West 13th Street


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