The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival 2014

“You can tell the history of jazz in four words: Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker” – the words of jazz great Miles Davis paying homage to the forefathers of a musical movement now celebrated around the world. Sixty years after his passing, Charlie “Bird” Parker is celebrated for his contribution to modern music through rhythmically and […]

Shakespeare… the Harlem Way

The Classical Theatre of Harlem’s production of “Romeo and Juliet,” directed by Justin Emeka, opened last night at Marcus Garvey Park. This is the company’s second season in the park, following an uproarious run of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” last summer. After attending a performance last year, I had been waiting for this summer’s play […]

Jazzed! The Changing Beat of 125th Street

Harlem and jazz are intertwined with one another, the influence of the music created during the Harlem Renaissance is a lesson in American history.   To walk the wide, tree-shaded streets of Harlem is a unique experience.  Brownstones  stand strong and powerful, with the stories  of music, art, and culture as much a part of […]

Bryonn Bain’s Lyrics from Lockdown Incredible True Story of Being Wrongly Incarcerated

Bryonn Bain’s amazingly true story needs to be told. Wrongly accused of a crime he didn’t commit due to a frightening combination of mistaken identity and racism, Lyrics From Lockdown is a haunting and beautifully written tale of Bain’s incarceration and transformation into a leading prison activist. The performance at the National Black Theater this […]

On the A with Souleo: Did hip hop kill the funk

There are few things more powerful than strong, fierce, and bold women of color that challenge the status quo. This past weekend, independent artist and entrepreneur, Nucomme, paid homage to one such iconic figure in “Betty’s Story: A Tribute to Betty Davis.” The event, which was held at the Apollo Music Café, attempted to conjure […]

3 Things you need to know about the inaugural Harlem Arts Festival

Harlem is going through another renaissance. Whether it’s prime real estate, good food or arts & culture that you’re looking for, you no longer have to leave the neighborhood to get it.  To celebrate this revitalization and to capture the energy and essence of what’s going on Uptown, a group of local residents have created […]

ATCQ – Movement 4

March 1st to 3rd Harlem Stage presented A Tribe Called Quest: Innovation and Legacies – A Movement in Four Parts. This four part series featured performances, dance events and a free humanities event headlined by a panel of hip-hop scholars, journalists and artists. Sat, March 3 Movement 4 – Beats, Rhymes and Beyond: The J. […]

My Image Studios under construction

The journey Back in 2007, I met with the developers of the Kalahari. Carlton Brown and Walter Edwards, of Full Spectrum, were extremely excited about the opening of their first green residential development in Harlem.  The development was to include space for a custom-designed, state-of-the-art movie theater, dedicated to showing independent black and Latino films. […]

Segregated Sound at the Museum of the City of New York

By Gigi LaBelle Last Friday the Museum of the City of New York (MCNY) held a public forum on the topic of race relations and music titled, “Segregated Sound? African American Music and American Popular Song.” MCNY has been a premier destination of all things art, culture, and history, regarding both past and present NYC.  […]

The Goddess Lakshmi at Paris Blues

The Goddess Lakshmi at Paris Blues in Harlem Sunday Nights 7pm, March 27 — July 31st Rene Calvo returns, fresh from his travels in Africa, to perform with his band, The Goddess Lakshmi, for an extended stint at the legendary Paris Blues in Harlem. Calvo, a noted downtown theater impresario (Ailanthus Grove) and owner of  […]

Rethinking Possible with Daymond John and Common at the Apollo

The Apollo has been dubbed the place where stars are born and legends are made. So it was apropos that AT&T celebrated past history makers and future innovators by bringing a national speakers series to the world famous theater on the last Thursday of February. The series also traveled to other major metropolitan hubs like […]

Pathmark Gospel Choir Competition: Harlem Wins

On Sunday, Pathmark invited top gospel choirs to perform on the legendary stage of the World Famous Apollo Theater in celebration of Black History Month. The Pathmark Gospel Choir Competition of Harlem treated local residents and their families to a free, song-filled Sunday, as choirs from across the Northeast went head-to-head with Metro New York’s best for […]

The Apollo Kicks-off Music Café Series

The Apollo Theatre turns up the notch to create a music experience with a set-up like never before in its history. This past Friday, the Apollo Music Café series, showcased some of the best underground and emerging artists in today’s music scene kicks off with Joi’s Futuristic Throwbacks and Devon Lee. “Atlanta’s underground queen Joi […]

Prince donates to Harlem youth organizations

Seven-time Grammy award winner Prince has bestowed a $1 million line of credit to the Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ) and made a special gift to the Uptown Dance Academy in Harlem. The press conference was held at Madison Square Garden at the conclusion of the first leg of Prince’s phenomenally successful “Welcome 2 America” tour, […]

Uptownflavor remembers Bobby Robinson of Bobby’s Happy House

Bobby Robinson, the owner of iconic Bobby’s Happy House, passed away at the age of 93. Bobby’s Happy House was one of Harlem’s first black owned businesses on 125th Street as well as one of the neighborhood’s last standing record shops until it was forced to close in 2008.  You can read more about Bobby […]

Rock, Paper, Soul Hits Harlem

Funk Soul diva Sy Smith will take the stage Sunday, January 23rd at Talay Lounge for the inaugural Rock, Paper, Soul modern groove assembly independent artist showcase. Smith, widely known as the hardest working woman in the industry, will be joined by a whole slew of artists, two of whom (the irrepressible Chinah Blac and grossly […]

Keri Hilson Live Tastemakers Concert at Aloft Harlem

To celebrate the grand opening of the Aloft Harlem, singer Keri Hilson performed at an exclusive live concert with a full band and two background singers. Hilson’s fans were treated to a three-song set from her brand-new sophomore album, No Boys Allowed, including “Beautiful Mistake” and “Lose Control (Let Me Down).” No Boys Allowed was […]

Uptownflavor remembers Jazz legend Billy Taylor

Billy Taylor, a name synonymous with Jazzmobile. A legend in the world of jazz and the artistic director of the Kennedy Center. Taylor died of heart failure yesterday at the age 89. Jazzmobile will be celebrating the 90th birthday of Dr. Taylor next year. Dr. Taylor wrote more than 300 compositions. They ranged in scope […]

UF Pays Tribute to R&B Songstress Teena Marie

Word spread like wild-fire across the Internet this evening that R&B songstress, Teena Marie, had passed away in her sleep. Within minutes, celebrities and reporters were confirming what no one wanted to believe; Teena Marie (aka Lady T, Vanilla Child, and the queen of “Blue Eyed-Soul”) was gone. If you were a follower of her […]

Thanks Kanye: Christmas in Harlem

Thanks to Kanye West we are getting lots of hits to Uptownflavor looking for his new song, Christmas in Harlem. We have a slideshow by the same name from 2008. So if you were looking for Kanye, click here. In the meantime, enjoy our slideshow since you are already here! Related post: Christmas in Harlem […]

Vivian Sessoms “on the sofa”

Fresh off her command performance singing background vocals for the living legend known as Cher, Vivian Sessoms will be the next artist taking a seat “on the sofa.” The second edition of joseph riley land‘s “on the sofa” series, sponsored by Pollen Nation Events & Floral and Billie’s Black, takes place this Wednesday [October 13].   […]

Rendezvous with Henry at The Shrine

Dear Harlem and Harlem Visitors: Remember a couple of weeks ago when I told you to go see Nakia Henry perform at Billie’s Black? A lot of you listened. Good job. For the rest of you… yeah, I’m talking to you… rectify the situation tonight by heading over to Shrine World Music Venue [2271 Adam […]

Goose Bumps & Naked Soul

Acoustic shows are hit or miss. Sometimes you get an artist whose voice reaches out, wrapping around the lyrics, caressing them slowly, delivering such a punch that you get goose bumps. Others make you wish you had stayed at home and watched Homeboys From Outer Space reruns on TV. Nakia Henry’s molasses-soaked vocals are the former. The […]

Hacia Afuera Outdoor Art and Music Festival

HACIA AFUERA Taking Back Our Streets Through the Arts! August 28 & 29 (Sat-Sun), 12-5pm 105 St & Lexington Ave FREE Outdoor Art & Music Festival (rain or shine) Outdoor Art Exhibition featuring art by Patricia Cazorla & Nancy Saleme, Esperanza Cortes, Aissa Deebi, Roberto De Jesus, Laura F. Gibellini, Marissa A. Gutiérrez-Vicario, Alejandro Endoke Makuendo […]

Angela Johnson on the sofa

Billie’s Black launches a new series this Wednesday (August 11) with the first “on the sofa with joseph riley land.” Yes, that would be me. Shameless, shameless plug. But, my job as a writer for UPTOWNflavor is to tell you about events going on in Harlem. And this, my friends, is an event. Co-sponsored by […]

Thelonius Monk: Straight No Chaser

Filmmakers Bruce Ricker and Charlotte Zwerin use Michael and Christian Blackwood’s 1968 footage of modern jazz innovator, Thelonious Monk, to create a singular portrait of this Jazz master’s life both onstage and off. Charlotte Zwerin brings her editing genius (Gimme Shelter, Salesman) to the fore as she weaves new interviews, archival photos and music through […]

MiKA’s Summer Love

Harlem has produced many artists over the years. To be honest, it seems if you’re born and/or raised here you inevitably end up with some creativity in your blood. Born in Harlem Hospital and raised in the Sugar Hill section of Harlem, MiKA received a double, triple, quadruple dose of said creativity, with copious amounts […]