Monday, December 26, 2011

The Road Home: Holiday Travel

Hey Everyone,

I know I haven't been on the blog in quite some time. It's been quite a last half of the year. I will be giving you my Year-End Review soon enough, but in the mean time check my final bus ride home playlist.  I put the iPod on shuffle and let it roll for 4 1/2 hours.  Here is what it gave me.

I'm so blessed to be an artist in such an amazing artist community. Some of my peeps come up in the Pod and it really did my heart good. It was a reminder to my of how many wonderful people I have in my life.

So until the complete wrap up here is a little something to muse on. If you don't now the artists that I'm mentioning, but are feeling the title and want to know more, then please look them up.

Have a great Holiday Season everyone and enjoy the music!


Soundtrack to the Road Home (The Final Bus Ride (pt. 1))
  1. Call Me - Tweet (Southern Hummingbird)
  2. Jimi Hendrix - Hey Joe (Are You Experienced)
  3. Belly (Dub Mix)  - David Pilgrim (All Things Being Equal)
  4. That Girl - Stevie Wonder (Stevie Wonder's Original Musiquarium 1)
  5. Pain (It's Gonna Come Heavier) - Silhouette Brown (Silhouette Brown)
  6. Do It Again- Steely Dan (Can't Buy a Thrill)
  7. Como Vou Fazier (Remix) -  Dois Irmaos feat. Mariana De Moraes (Brazilian Lounge)
  8. Berlin -Brazilian Girls (New York City)
  9. Never too Late - Omar (This is Not a Love Song)
  10. Ballad of Dorothy Parker - Prince (Sign O' the Times)
  11. Men in Love - The Gossip (Men in Love)
  12. Soul Makossa - Manu Dibango (Soul Makossa)
  13. Joyride - Joy Jones (Godchild)
  14. Previsao - BossaCucaNova feat. Adriana Calcanhotto (Brazilian Lounge)
  15. Love Song For No One -  John Mayer (Room For Squares)
  16. So Naughty - Chaka Khan (Naughty)
  17. Don’t Go Loose it Baby - Hugh Masakela (Don't Go Lose It Baby)
  18. Belief - John Mayer (Continuum)
  19. John, Ain’t Hard - Taj Mahal (The Real Thing)
  20. Gold - Interference (Once Soundtrack)
  21. Liliquoi Moon -  MeShell Ndegeocello (Comfort Woman)
  22. Bou’ree in E Minor - The Family Stand (In a Thousand Years)
  23. War - Bob Marley (Rastaman Vibration)
  24. You Still Feel the Need - The Isley Brothers (Harvest for the World)
  25. Get Ready, Get Set - Chaka Khan (Naughty)
  26. Moody’s Mood - George Benson (Give me the Night)
  27. October Song - Amy Winehouse (Frank)
  28. Won’t Fade Away - Lewis Taylor (Stoned: Part II)
  29. Hey Uh What You Say Come One - Roy Ayers (Everybody Loves the Sunshine)
  30. L’Interprete - Brazilian Girls (New York City)
  31. Tell Me - Omar (Best By Far)
  32. Story -The Family Stand (In a Thousand Years)
  33. Dance with Me - Peter Brown (A Fantasy Love Affair)
  34. Word Up! - Willis (Take You High/Word Up!)
  35. Africa Unite - Bob Marley (Survival)
  36. Belly - David Pilgrim (All Things Being Equal)
  37. Go Head & Rise - Shelley Nicole's blaKbüshe (The Quick & Dirty EP)
  38. Something You Know - Toshi Reagon (There and Back Again)
  39. Strange Boy - Brazillian Girls (New York City)
  40. Get Up, Get Into it, Get Involved - James Brown (Star Time)
  41. Higher Ground - Ellen McIllwaine (The Real Ellen McIllwaine)
  42. I’ll Stay - Funkadelic (Standing on the Verge of Getting it On)
  43. Forever People (Do it so Delicious) - Just a Band (82)
  44. Rock with You - Micheal Jackson (Off the Wall)
  45. Sister Golden Hair - America (Hearts)
  46. Look Inside - 4hero feat. Face (Play with the Changes)
  47. Winter Sadness - Kook & the Gang (Spirit of the Boogie)
  48. Paper Cup - The Swell Season (Strict Joy)
  49. Party Up - Prince (Dirty Mind)
  50. Street Life - The Crusaders feat. Randy Crawford (Street Life)
  51. I Am American - Shelley Nicole's blaKbüshe (Live at BAM)
  52. Survival - Bob Marley (Survival)
  53. Think (About It) - Lynn Collins (Think (About It))
  54. Give it to Me - Shelley Nicole's blaKbüshe (The Quick & Dirty EP)
  55. Slippin' Into Darkness (Extended Version) - War (All Day Music)
  56. Swamps of Georgia - Jonah Smith Band (Beneath the Underdog)

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Michfest 2011 Wrap Up - This is Called the Show

There I am in the center. Pre-haircut!

Usually I give a FULL 7-day wrap up of the entire Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. I really love doing that to give folks who have never been and people who will never get a chance to go (men) a real feel for the festival. But so many things happened in my life post Fest and now we are over a month out from when it all went down. I am still going to give you the full blow by blow of my show, but I’m just going to hit you with the music highlights from the rest of the week. So let’s start where it has begun for the last two years. Road Trip!

Monday August 1st
This year’s Michfest road crew was Toshi, Achuziam and I. Of course we tried to leave Brooklyn at around 6am, but it wasn’t happening. I got up early that morning and picked up Achuziam and then we headed to Toshi. This was a really special trip for Chuz because it was her first time away from her son and the first time she would be hitting the stage in almost two years. When we got to Toshi’s we were going to load the car and go, but her dog was not having it. What I mean is the dog wasn’t trying to go to the bathroom before we left. I swear animals know when we are leaving and try to slow things down. Finally the dog went and we were able to go as well. LOL!

It’s always great being on the road with Toshi and just driving to Michigan in general. We did our usual Panera Bread stop and also drove through a storm. We were sort of caravanning with my girl Laura who would call us from the road every now and then. She was my fest guest so I knew I would be seeing her soon. She left from New Jersey so she was a little ahead of us.

When we finally got to Hart, MI, which near the land, we dropped Chuz at the motel and then Toshi and I headed to the land. Luckily we got there right before they were going to close the gate for the night. I was so thankful that the ladies at the fest had put up my tent for me. I sent it ahead with my girl Kelly as I had last year. They set up Laura’s tent right next to mine and when Ki Ki and Ganessa arrived they would be right in the area too. LaFrae and Alex arrived on Sunday so they were already settled in. Ah, gang’s almost all here! Vicki was in and I think Julie had arrived as well. Ganessa and Ki Ki would be there the next day.

After I got all checked in, a lovely young lady named Thokozani helped me to my tent. Turns out she lives in Brooklyn too. Brooklyn is so deep at the festival. Of course Mariasha and Tina were in the house. Along with BE, Penny and the whole crew! Welcome Home! Yes Welcome Home!

Tuesday August 2nd
I had to jump right in to work because my set was on opening night, which was the next day. I had rehearsal that day and I also had a secret meeting with the ladies of LAVA. For those of you who don’t know, LAVA is an acrobatic dance company in Brooklyn that I love! I had a crazy idea to incorporate them in to my show, but I wasn’t sure how. This is one of the many reasons why Michfest is so magical. There are so many creative and wonderful people on the land that you can make almost anything happen if you just make a call or send an email before you get there. That’s how I got Julie Wolf on my set, but that’s for another part of the story.

Tuesday was an interesting day. It always rains at Michfest. You don’t know what day it’s going to be, but it will happen. Trust! This year’s rain date was Tuesday and it was nothing nice. I just knew that Ganessa and Ki Ki’s flight were going to be delayed but somehow they got there. Tuesday was also the only full band rehearseal that we were going to have. Before we got to the land Ganessa, Lafrea, Alex, Ki Ki, Chuz and I had been rehearsing. The only missing pieces were Vicki and Julie. We had one shot to pull it all together. I knew it was going to be fine, but rehearsal was only 2 hours so we had to make the most of it.

Before reheasrsal I got together with the ladies of LAVA to figure out my entrance for the show the next night. After brainstorming a bit we came up with and idea. The women at the main stage were trying to get everything going to do their own work for the day, but the rain was slowing them down. I wasn’t sure if we would be able to rehearse at the main stage because it was raining, but it slowed just long enough to give us a change to run through our grand entrance. After a few tries it seemed like it was going to work!

Now back to rehearsal. It went amazing! I mean really really amazing! I was so happy. I really wanted to just kiss them all and I’m sure none of them would have minded, but I had to keep it professional. LOL!

Rehearsal Tent
On Tuesday night the rain came down in sheets. My tent leaked again! It was a mess. I spent much of the storm in Central Heating, where they check in the artist and also doubles as a Green Room of sorts. I was in there with a few other folks at the storm raged on. The thunder and lightening was so amazing. I love being outside during a storm. It’s actually one of the things I love most about Michigan.

This year the lightening was really close to home. It struck a tree on the land near the Womyn of Color Tent and split. Luckily no one was hurt. At some point, after getting some extra towels to soak up the water in my tent from Lisa, I went back to my tent to ride it out. Finally sleep took over and I was well on my way to Wednesday.

Wednesday August 3rd
I woke that morning to no electricity. I had a sound check scheduled for 8:45am, but that was not going to happen. Also no electric, meant no water. That meant no one could take a shower that morning. So as Elvira Kurt said, we were camping for real. LOL! Of course I wasn’t the only one who needed to soundcheck, I was just first because I was headlining that night. As the time passed and the check time kept being pushed back other deals were being struck.

Jill Sobule was playing right before me and I have to tell you as I told her, I had no idea who she was. Turns out she sang the original “I Kissed a Girl” before Katy Perry was a twinkle in your eye. Yes I know the songs are different, but you get my point. It was great to meet her. At some point during the day she heard my ladies playing and thought it was be a great idea to have some of them on her set. So what started out as just LaFrae and Ganessa on her set, turned into Alex, LaFrae and Ganessa. So that was my rhythm section, but it was all cool.

Finally when the electric and water came back on we were ready to rock this sound check. I can’t remember if at this point I checked or if Jill checked or if the Opening Ceremonies people went, but I do know that it all got done. Big ups to Connie who I believe is the best stage manager in the world!

After all the checks were done I went back to my tent and chilled until it was time for the show. I’m sure I ate somewhere in there, but I just tried to stay quiet and relax myself until it was time to go.

I don’t usually get nervous until right before I hit the stage, but I was nervous. It’s a big deal to headline Michfest and to do it on Opening Night especially with this being my first time on Night Stage. For those of you who haven’t read my Michfest blogs before and who have never been there are three stages at Fest. Day, Acoustic and Night Stage. Often times Day and Acoustic feel like the testing ground to see if you can make it up to Night State. Everyone comes to Night Stage on Opening Night. They might not come all the other nights, but Opening you can count on a full field; but I was ready.

For this big show I called in the big guns. I asked Micah Lee of BlackSnow to make my outfit. That was quite a feat considering that he measured me and then left Brooklyn and had to make it work without a fitting. He made it work! I was also so excited about my band and LAVA being in the mix. All the pieces came together. It was time.

I dressed backstage with everyone who was performing in the Opening Ceremonies. I can’t really describe to you how incredible this opening was. I was off the meat rack. This year was dedicated to the Goddess Artemis and the bows and arrows were not out! Amazon womyn were rising for real. There was a lot of bow and arrow drama, but the show-stopper came from Falcon, the women who is the real incarnation of Xena. For real yo! She came out to the edge of the stage, lit her arrowheads on fire and proceeded to shoot at three targets. The first two were not such a big deal because they were pretty much right in front of her, but really the were on fire so one slip up and someone is getting hit with a torch. But the real drama came with the last target, which was over people’s heads and way out in the field. So she shoots and you can hear people holding their breath. I swear the arrow disappeared in the sky and then landed on that damn target that was hella far away. Yes I said hella! I’m not good with feet and yards, but if I had to guesstimate I would say that target was at least 50-75 yards away. I do know football so I’m thinking half a field or more. It was amazing. Then Julie Wolf, Aleah Long and Vicki Randle had the nerve so sing the mess out of “Calling All Angels” while the children and the elders came out in white and people were instructed to call on their angels who had passed. WHAT??!! There wasn’t a dry eye in the house. I was trying to keep in together cuz I had on a full face of make up. Crazy amazing! Whew!

After we all got our tissues, next up was Jill. Now let me back up and remind you that Ganessa, LaFrae and Alex are now playing part of her set and Alex was in 7th heaven. Alex is a big fan of Jill’s so it was like a dream for her, which was great! I love when things like that happen. They didn’t play Jill’s whole set, but they were a wonderful addition.

In between all this me and a few other folks are cracking glow sticks to give to the band and to LAVA for the stage. So as soon as Jill’s set was done we gave everyone in my set, lights and it was on.

The MC on Wednesday was Karen Williams. If you don’t know Karen you better get on it. She’s an amazing comedian and an all around great lady. So when it was time to get set Connie gave the LAVA ladies and me the signal. Jen who is another amazing crew woman came with us into the field. Yes people I am entering from the audience. Jen was holding my wireless mic because the ladies from LAVA were going to carry me in on my back.

Connie & LaFrae, photo by LaFrae Sci
We got out to the field, Karen and Cree (Gina Breedlove’s daughter) introduced me, LaFrae and Vicki started in with the beat of “BlaK Girls”, I stepped up on Sarah and Diana, Rose and Lollo had my back, Jen handed me the mic and…"MICHIGAN!!!!!!!!!" And the crowd goes wild. HA!!!

Grand Entrance by moonlight: photo by Nívea Castro

The crowd and my people: photo by Nívea Castro
LAVA walks in step up the ramp while I’m talking to the audience and the band on my back. I call for Alex to start the wha wha guitar, and soon the ladies slowly put me down on the cat walk. I’m still talking to the audience calling for all the Blak Girls. “One! Two! Three! Uh!” Bass drops! In the words of Mr. Cheeks “Lights, Camera, Action!” It was like that.

LAVA holding me up and holding me down!: photo by Abena Sharon Dale
The set list for the evening was:
1. Blak Girls (we did the original and the afrobeat mix)
2. Give it to me
3. Kelly Gets Off
4. Can’t Blame a Tree
5. Box
6. I Am American
7. In Your View
8. Gimme Shelter (Yes the Stones)
9. Encore: Go Head & Rise

photo by Nívea Castro
photo by Abena Sharon Dale

Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
There were so many great moments during the show. The audience singing “Kelly Gets Off” even though it was brand new to them, the people dancing during “I Am American” and “In Your View” which they had also not heard before. Me running down the catwalk and slapping people’s hands, getting to the end and this woman picking me up and hugging me! Yes it happened. The crazy solo on the keys by Julie Wolf on “In Your View.” The other crazy solo by Alex on “Can’t Blame a Tree.” LaFrae playing with one hand so she could take a photo of me on stage, the amazing signing by Cathleen Riddely. Wow! It was just amazing. All of it! To be able to sing to the night sky like that was nothing short of a blessing. I am so thankful. I am so thankful indeed.

LaFrae's one handed shot of me while drumming

The Ladies of blaKbüshe!

Ki Ki & Me

After the Party It’s the After Party
I exited the stage to the warm and somewhat overwhelming welcome of my sisters. That love on the other side from my colleagues and friends was neck in neck with the love from the audience. I’m surprised I didn’t cry, but as I sit here writing about it I am welling up a bit. Yes I’m sappy, but I love these women so much. It’s so sad that most of us only see each other once a year, but what a time we have.

My girl Tory and I had been talking for weeks about wine on the land so I was ready for my drink. She got a bottle of white out of her tent, I got a few cups and we all celebrated. That night after the late night meal some of the ladies sat at one of the tables and sang songs to Eshu, Oshun & Yemaya under the stars.

Post Show Glow (You see I have my wine bottle in hand): Photo by Nívea Castro
I took a while for me to come down, but I eventually slept that night. I had the whole week in front of me, but my most important job was done. It was hands down one of the best nights of my life and I’ve been here a while folks. LOL.

Thank You!

I have to say thank you to so many folks who made that show possible and helped out in some way. So thank you to:

The ladies contingent of blaKbüshe!:
LaFrae Sci (drums), Ganessa James (bass), Alex Nolan (guitar), Ki Ki Hawkins (vocals), Achuziam Maha (vocals), Vicki Randle (percussion), Julie Wolf (keys) and Cahtleen Riddley (hands).

Achuziam Maha-Sanchez: Photo By Nívea Castro
Alex Nolan: Photo By Nívea Castro
Cathleen Riddley: Photo By Nívea Castro
Ganessa James: Photo By Nívea Castro
Julie Wolf: Photo By Nívea Castro
Ki Ki Hawkins: Photo By Nívea Castro
LaFrae Sci: Photo By Nívea Castro
Vicki Randle: Photo By Nívea Castro
Sarah East Johnson, Diana Y Greiner, Rose Calucchia and Lollo Romansky

And of course:
Terri Lynn Delk, Toshi Reagon, Tory Trujillo, Laura Vogel, Shalonda Ingram and our fearless Michfest leader Lisa Vogel! Yes and Yes!

Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
P.F. (Post Fest)
Since returning from the festival it has been quite a whirlwind. The plan was to come back and prepare to record my CD, but when I returned my doctor put me on vocal rest until at least the end of September and then I have to evaluate from there. In short I had been singing on very swollen vocal chords for a while. Even though I had a great show at Michfest, I knew something was wrong because I didn’t have a voice for a week after my show. When I tell folks about this some people gasp, but I am glad to be finding out what is going on. If I just have to shut up for a while so I can come out better on the other side then so be it.

Thank you for your ever-present love and support of me and my music. It means so much. You can still be a part of making the album happen. Yes we are still in donation mode. Just go to my website to contribute ( and I thank you for any donation you can give. So as soon as the doc gives me the green light, I can get myself in the studio and cut the new project. Yes!

Photo By Nívea Castro

Can a Girl Catch a Break?
New Album Campaign Continues
Album to be Produced by Toshi Reagon


Michfest Wrap Up 2011 - The Rest of the Week

More Fest!
The Week in Festival
I’m not going to give a full recap of all the rest of the shows that happened at Michfest, but I am going to hit you with my highlights. I can only tell you about what I caught so if you are reading this and you were at fest and I didn’t mention the dope thing you saw it’s because I wasn’t there. It doesn’t mean it wasn’t amazing. So here is the Michfest Rest of the Week in Review.

Wednesday August 3rd
Before I hit the stage on Wednesday night I went to see Climbing Poetree on the Acoustic Stage. Of course Alixa and Naima did their thing. I hadn’t seen them perform in a long time so it was great to catch up with them and their work on the land. I also had an opportunity to catch a bit of Andrea Gibson’s show. She is also a spoken word artist. I had never heard her work before, but it was amazing as well. I couldn’t stay for Alix Olson, but I did get to hear her and Andrea rehearsing a piece in Central Heating so at least I got to hear that. The opening day of festival was magical all around.

Thursday August 4th
On this day it was all about the Acoustic Stage for me. I had missed the first go round of Karma’s show Indigo: A Blues Opera because I had rehearsal, but I knew it was going to be something special. First C.C. Carter kicked things off with her amazing poems and her ode to the ladies with big hips! That is always fun an amazing.

C.C. Carter
Then Karma hit the stage with Mazz Swift (violin), Susan Alcorn (Pedal Steel), Gina Breedlove (vocals), Marcelle Davies-Lashley (vocals), Sokhna Heathyre Mabin, Naima Penniman and Adaku Utah (dancers), Clarival Ruiz and Ashley Brockington (actresses)! What?? It was on folks. That was my first real cry of the festival. If you are interested in knowing more about Karma’s piece please check her out at

Indigo: A Blues Opera
Karma Mayet Johnson & Ashley Brockington

Susan Alcorn & Mazz Swift

Karma Mayet Johnson & Sokhna Heathyre Mabin

On Thursday night God-des and She rocked the house with their hip-hop and soulful vocals and Suzanne Westenhoefer came with her brand of funny! It was all in all a great night as well.

Friday August 5th
Friday was packed! I made it to 6 out of 9 shows and I worked the sweat lodge. It was a crazy wonderful day. Here are the highlights in the sequence of the day.

After I worked the Womyn of Color Sweat Lodge, which was really wonderful, I wandered down to the Day Stage to check out the rest of the Krudas Cubensi set. They are two sistas from Cuba who are MC’s. That show was off the meat rack! You know a show is killin’ when you see someone and you can’t understand all of what they are saying and you are still jammin’. Well that was me and a bunch of other folks at the Krudas show. Following Krudas was Invincible another MC out of Detroit. My girl DJ Rimarkable was on the set and Adrienne Maree Brown was on backing vox for another killin’ hip-hop set, which culminated with Krudas and Climbing Poetree joining Invincible on stage. I had to run and sadly missed Hunter Valentine, but Achuziam said that set will killin’ as well. Invincible will be on tour with Tamar-kali and Jean Grae this fall. You can find out about tour dates at

Later that day on the Acoustic State there was more fire. First up was my auntie Vicki. I don’t know if she knows that I call her that, but now she will know. Vicki Randle along with Julie Wolf on keys and accordion and Lyris Hung on violin kicked things off. Vickie was amazing and I also got an “I <3 Black People” tank top out of it. Vicki and I both love black people.

Julie Wolf & Vicki Randle
I had never heard of the woman who was following Vicki, but as the stage crew was setting things up I knew I had to stay. Up next was Susan Werner. She was on guitar and keys and with Trina Hamlin on harmonica, vocals & drums and Gail Ann Dorsey on bass and vocals. Then on a couple of songs she called to the stage Natalia Zuckerman on lap steel! That just took it all over the top. That whole set was out of control. Trina played some makeshift drum kit that used her snare hard case as a kick drum, just a snare head, tambourine and harmonica. I know there may have been a couple of other things in there but seriously she just wore me out. The whole band did. It was also great to find out that Natalia and Trina are both in New York. Whoo hoo!

Trina Hamlin, Susan Werner & Gail Ann Dorsey

Trina Hamlin

Susan Werner & Natalia Zukerman

Finally closing out the day was Night Stage and what a night stage it was. The night started off with Thao another artist I had never seen before, but was hearing great things about. Well she did not disappoint. She also added a few special guests to her set including the star of the festival, LaFrae, as well as Vicki, Tory and I think Julie too. It was a really fun set. She took the opportunity to run the catwalk as well and she said she felt like Kenny Chesney. LOL! I totally understand. I think I felt like Bono. HA!


Then after Thao was the set of all sets. Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon took the stage with an all star crew. LaFrae (drums of course), Sue Hadjopoulous (percussion), Gail Ann Dorsey (bass), Marcelle Davies-Lashley (tambourine/vocals), Stephanie Battle (vocals) and of course Toshi as the MD and on guitar and vocals. This set had it all. Dr. Reagon sang freedom songs, told stories and of course the music and vocals were off the hook. Ri Ri and I were the amen/tambourine corner in the audience. The good Dr. Reagon was so dynamic that she got not one encore, but two! I have never seen anything like that at fest. I mean after the first encore the audience would not stop clapping. The next band was supposed to come on, but the crowd would not stop cheering. No matter what the MC said we would not stop so Dr. Reagon came back. Honestly she could have played all night and I think everyone would have rode with her for the whole three hours. We were primed for a tent revival that night. There was an amen around every corner. I felt truly blessed after that set. Amazing!

The Bernice Johnson Reagon Songbook

Dr. Bernice Reagon Johnson & Stephanie Battle, Photo by Abena Sharon Dale
MEN followed Dr. Reagon, but I only caught a part of their set. They sounded incredible though.

Saturday August 6th
This was another action packed day for me. I started the day at the sweat lodge for Native women, which was really powerful. I have sat many a lodge, but this was one of the most powerful. Since I was at the lodge I missed Animal’s set, but I could hear it and they sounded great. I’m sorry I missed this as well, but I know I’ll see Animal again. I missed the rest of the day stage, but I made it to Acoustic for three more of my favorite sets of the week.

First Valerie June kicked things off. I had been hearing so much about this woman and it was worth the wait. Anyone who can play the banjo has my vote and she did just that. Valerie plays bluegrass and I love some bluesgrass. She was really amazing.

Valerie June
Next up was Ferron and Bitch. The first time I saw them together was my first festival and I was in tears by the end of the set. They are just that good together. This time I wasn’t crying after the set because Ferron always has jokes, but it was just as amazing as before.

Bitch & Ferron
The stage closed with LAVA. They were so amazing because they managed to do trapeze in the woods! That was the best. Brooklyn does it again! They also performed excerpts from various shows they have choreographed over the last year or so. It was a really great show and lots of fun as usual.

Night Stage started with Slanty Eyed Mama. They are a musical comedy duo of Kate Rigg and Lyris Hung. Their set is always a lot of fun and this time was no exception. They warmed up the crowd and got people laughing and dancing.

Next up was Melissa Ferrick. Melissa came with just her and her guitar and it was a great. A really wonderful set.

The last set of every Saturday night is Chix Lix. Every year is a different theme and this year was the blues. There was a great lineup of vocalists on the set including Judith Casselberry, Karma Mayet Johnson, Susan Werner, Toshi Reagon, Nedra Johnson and many more. The set was a lot of fun and as usual a great way to end night stage at the festival.

The Chix Lix Crew
Sunday August 7th
Well we were supposed to leave this day, but we were having such a good time that we decided to stay until Monday morning. Sunday has pretty much the same lineup every year. Ubaka Hill starts the morning with the Drumsong Orchestra, which is always amazing, followed by the One World Inspiration Choir led by Aleah Long. That is always wonderful as well.

In the later afternoon the comedy sets started on the Day Stage. The year the featured comedians were Jessica Kirson, Karen Williams and Elvira Kurt. All three of their sets were funny as hell! I laughed for an hour and a half straight.

Karen Williams, Photo by Nívea Castro
Later that night was the candlelight concert and closing ceremonies. Always nice, but I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to the humming. LOL. Those who know, know.

Well folks. Michfest 2011 has officially come to a close.

Monday August 8th
Monday morning we got the crew together and hit the road. This time my girl Rachel drove back with us and we also caravanned with Alixa, Samara, Karma and her crew in her car. We took our time getting back. Stopped at Bob Evans for lunch. Yeah Bob Evans! Then we just kept going on our way. Before we knew it we were back in NY and back to reality. It was again great week of festival.

Thank Goddess for our safe return home. Until next year folks. Be well.