Femi Kuti & The Positive Force / Melvin Gibbs’ Elevated Entity
The Afrobeat pioneer Femi Kuti, backed by his band The Positive Force, will return to Celebrate Brooklyn to turn the Bandshell into a giant Nigerian dance party. The New York Times has championed as the group’s music as “thick, musky Afro-funk—a polyrhythmic elaboration on James Brown’s late-1960s sound—with lyrics that focus on government oppression and the problems of modern Africans.” The evening will begin with a performance by Brooklyn-born Melvin Gibbs, whom Time Out NY has deemed “the best bassist in the world.” Gibbs will showcase his Elevated Entity project, which is something of a downtown NYC supergroup and continues Gibbs’ exploration of African diaspora music with a fusion of Afro-Brazilian rhythms, funk and rap.
Blonde Redhead / Olof Arnalds
The vaunted NYC underground sensualists Blonde Redhead have shape-shifted from dissonant noise explorations to ethereal, dreamy pop over the course of their career, always inspiring intense devotion from their fans. PopMatters says of them, “It is as if they are pressing on piano keys and each key is a trigger that tugs a wire within the listener. There are keys for longing, possession, despair, and ecstasy—and Blonde Redhead travel fast and skillfully over the whole keyboard.”
The heavenly voice of Icelandic folk chanteuse Ólöf Arnalds has shared the stage with the likes of Björk, Sigur Rós, Jonathan Richman and The Dirty Projectors across the globe. Like each of these avant guarde artists, Ólöf asks for the definition of singer/songwriter to be redefined. Stereogum.com says, "She makes a lot happen with very few ingredients: The Icelandic singer/songwriter uses her pristine voice and an instrument or two to conjure a strange, mysterious world." Ólöf is currently mixing her second album which, like her debut Við og Við has been produced by Kjartan Sveinsson.
Celebrate Brooklyn and LimeWire Present
Dr. Dog / Phosphorescent / These United States
Esquire has called Philadelphia’s Dr. Dog as “your favorite band’s favorite band,” and Philadelphia Weekly has described the band’s music as a blend of “a little folk, blues, indie rock, soul, bluegrass—and a whole lot of down-home harmonizing. They channel ” (The Band one moment, the Beach Boys another, and Pavement the next. In the music played by Brooklyn’s Matthew Houck, a.k.a. Phosphorescent, “you can hear Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Will Oldham—but the modern day folkie has a sound all his own.” (Gothamist) These United States’ “distinct electro-folk sound” (NPR) rounds out the bill.
All performances rain or shine
All Celebrate Brooklyn! Performances Take Place at the Prospect Park Bandshell. All performances are free with a $3 suggested contribution except Benefit Concerts.
Please do not bring pets, alcoholic beverages, glass, cans, coolers, recording devices or professional (long lens) cameras.