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AFROPUNK @ Lincoln Center, July 2015

Originally posted on #blkgrlswurld:

Everyone’s revving up for the AFROPUNK fest set to take place in Brooklyn later this August so it was great to get a taste at Lincoln Center of the fun that’s only weeks away. I learned my lesson last summer, that free events in NYC can generate substantially long lines and hours of waiting, with no promise of everyone getting a chance to see the show. I enjoyed how AFROPUNK approached this event, by offering a couple of stages to attend.

christina long art, blkgrlswurld, nyc, afropunk, metalcore, summer, 2015, mfa, siac, chicago, brooklyn, black girl Chargaux at Lincoln Center Out of Doors, July 2015, photo by #blkgrslwurld ZINE

When I first arrived at Lincoln Center, I drifted towards the east side of the Metropolitan Opera house, hearing Brooklyn based duo Chargaux performing and had assumed that this was where Vintage Trouble, The Skins and LION BABE were set to play as well. It was a modest size crowd seated in the shade with plenty…

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Artist talk w/ #blkgrlswurld July 18th, NYC

Head over to the Manhattan Graphics Center for an evening with Blkgrlswurld ZINE creator, Christina Long, MFA. For details please see http://www.manhattangraphicscenter.org/artisttalks.html

Saturday, 6:30–8:30 pm | Saturday, July 18 2015

Bio: Born in Chicago and raised in Metro Detroit, Christina Long received her MFA in Printmaking from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2012. Her art practice explores non-traditional printmaking through stop-motion animation, hand crafted artist books and wall mural installations. With a child-like desire for an imaginative landscape she plays with cultural mythologies to share her experiences with blackness, heavy music and illness. Being heavily involved in the metalcore music scene for over a decade, she cares about exposing its supposed lack of African American Female presence through a collabroative art zine known as #Blkgrlswurld.

Print by Christina Long, MFA

Print by Christina Long, MFA

christina long art, blkgrslwruld ZINE, vans warped Tour, metalcore, nyc, girls rock,

Vans Warped Tour, Long Island NY

For the past couple of weeks I stared enviously as the gleeful thrill of the Warped Tour flew across my dash and Instagram feeds. No fair! Finally last Monday I decided I wasn’t going to miss out.

Vans Warped Tour holds a stigma for us metalheads between the ages of 21-29 as being a silly little playground for awkward little kids and Hot Topic shoppers. We image their parents waiting outside the venue in air conditioned mini vans while the mosh pits get muddy and fashionably emaciated tweens pass out from heat exhaustion. Admittedly it depends on what town your in as to how much of this nonsense you’ll see.

Lucky for me, I checked out the Long Island tour which was a couple hours outside of Manhattan and situated right on the coast of Jones Beach :D So beach weather, ocean waves, And metalcore?! It was so perfect, it felt as if I’d been transported to San Deigo or some such west coast locale. I could almost taste the Red Hot Chili Peppers performing from some apartment rooftop.

Beau Bokan, Vocalist of Blessthefall

Beau Bokan, Vocalist of Blessthefall

The line up for this year’s tour is pretty conservative as they continue to book directly through the smaller indie labels like Epitaph, Fearless, Relapse and Rise records. Not too many unknown artists to discover this time, but it allowed a veteran like me to focus on the real fun to be had with Blessthefall, Escape the Fate, Miss May I, Attilia, Silverstein and Asking Alexandria.

We rocked hard underneath the blaring sun, smaller kids clawing my taller frame like a tree, to leap into the crowd from my shoulders. I still don’t get what the circle pit is supposed to do, there are so few times where I’ve witnessed it actually work and create a robust energy of excitement. Wtf are we on a hamster wheel? I’d rather watch out for wacky karate kicks in the pit than run circles around water tanks and t-shirt stands. Come on.

Jones Beach, Long Island

Jones Beach, Long Island

I am soo happy I checked out the tour this year, no kids, no parents just music, sand and sea. NYC doesn’t have enough metal, metalcore or any other heavy music for my taste so I appreciate how the suburbs still deliver \m/

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All photos by blkgrlswurld

Silverstein trying to beat the heat :)

Silverstein trying to beat the heat :)

Miss May I, Warped Tour Long Island

Miss May I, Warped Tour Long Island

christina long art, lincoln center, nyc, blkgrlswurld

Artist Talk w/ John Mauceri and Sandy Cameron

Everyone has been looking forward to the big Danny Elfman performance of Tim Burton film music for most of the summer. Taking place at Lincoln Center for much of July, I attended a pre-show conversation taking place between the show’s lead conductor John Mauceri and its solo violinist, the young and talented Sandy Cameron. The performance itself lasts about 2.5 hours long and explores a number of Tim Burton films that Elfman supported through music, from Corpse Bride and Frankenweenie, to The Nightmare Before Christmas and Edward Scissorhands.

I wasn’t sure what to expect considering neither Danny Elfman or Tim Burton were present, but I came to understand how collaborative these projects can be when it comes to scoring/updating film music for symphony orchestras, when the original music was never intended to be heard outside of the original movie recording. Mauceri has made a career out of legitimizing movie music as critical compositions as serious and well crafted as any classical Beethoven or Strauss suite. As Mauceri explains, the public’s interaction with original music compositions has only increased since the time of silent movies and as we have familiarized ourselves with great works like Star Wars and Lord of thr Rings, the music from those films is just as memorable to us. We have become well versed in the kind of music that keeps us engaged with a visual narrative, and the sort of music (or lack thereof) that can turn us off.

I quickly recognized that Mauceri has teaching experience working with students, as he rambled on to us about historical instruments such as the Theremine instrument and eastern european composers who migrated to the western United States during WW2 who began writing for Hollywood productions. All very fascinating and compelling. I hope to attend any programs he ever teaches about music theory.

Solo violinist Sandy Cameron stars in a special performance of Edward Scissorhands that was specifically composed for her by Danny Elfman. A graduate of Harvard University and the Juilliard Pre College Program, her debut onto the public stage has only just begun. I’m looking forward to her becoming more known in future projects and being a great musical role model for young girls.

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Story drawing by Tim Burton

Story drawing by Tim Burton

 

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Getting Back To It 

The summer is finally getting started here in NYC and we’ve got all sorts of projects cooking with Blkgrlswurld ZINE. It’s been great getting back into printmaking as a scholarship fellow at the Manhattan Graphics Center- I’m thrilled to be meeting new artists and learning more about the local print community. Printmaking is a tight knit circle nationally and internationally- only so many folks know how to churn a Heidelberg press ok?

 Anyways, I’ll try and share here what’s going on in the print shop. I’m focused on silkscreen this summer, hoping to edition some zines, but I’m also planning some press work with chine cole. It’s surreal discovering this printers row of presses, screens and book makers in the heart of Times Square. This city is quirky, I’ll say that much. 😘

Summer events have me running rampant across Manhattan so stay tuned for my take on the NYC Ballet, Juiliard Chamber, System of A Down, From Autumn to Ashes return to NYC, Afro Punk Fest and some other special summer moments. 

christina long art

Doing some monoprinting on top of the Girl in a Plastic Bubble, by C.Long

  

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Good Times at the Brooklyn Folk Fest

Took a little adventure down to Brooklyn Heights this weekend, hungry for relaxed banjo playing and bluegrass fiddle melodies. Upon my entering the church where the fest was being held, I came upon a small group of musicians playing a ridiculously fast Appalachian tune in the kitchen. Just like that I felt as if I were back home in the mid-west, sitting out by the lake on a summer evening, playing fiddle on a tree stump and watching kids roast marshmallows.

The fest was a 3 day exploration of traditional music from a number a cultures and languages, ranging from early Americana, to West African folk tales and East Asian melodies. Hosted by Down Home Radio Show and The Jalopy Theatre it was interesting how music libraries such as the one within the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. invited musicians to explore their collections and learn songs that had been recorded for ethnographic purposes.

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Famoro Dioubate – Djeli playing Mande Balafon music from Guinea

There were collaborative sessions for people to bring their instruments and jam together so it was sweet seeing so many banjo and fiddle players in one place.

Bruce Molsky Instructing students at the fiddle workshop, 2015

Bruce Molsky Instructing students at the fiddle workshop, 2015

I’d made sure to bring my lil fiddle with me for a workshop they’d scheduled with the talented Bruce Molsky but the real fun was watching him play with friends out back while the rest of the audience attended the scheduled performances. What’s nice about his expert skill was witnessing how natural and comfortable performing music is for him. I love meeting artists who have a practice that’s as basic as breathing for them. A craft they do all day, everyday- for fun, business, pleasure anything else. It’s a lifestyle.

Take a look here:

Yea, every now and then those #midwest roots creep up on me ;) #brooklyn #FolkFest #nyc #fiddle #blkgrlswurld

A video posted by Blkgrlswurld (@blkgrlswurld) on