Event

KMHD and Soul'd Out Present
AJA MONET with WRK!
Tue June 25, 2024
( Doors: 7:00 pm ) SHOW: 8:00 pm PDT
Jack London Revue
529 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR
Ages 21 and Up
$30.00
w/ aja's all-star band feat.
Justin Brown - drums | Ben Williams - bass | Javier Santiago - keys | Logan Richardson - sax

 

+ special guests WRK!
ft. YAWA, Jacque Hammond & Vaughn Kimmons (Brown Calculus)

 

aja monet is a Caribbean-American surrealist blues poet and community organizer born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.

Her poems are a work of gravity. They are a fundamental for which all things are attracted, considered upon and enacted towards. Her work moves, constantly, between origin and outcome, allowing them to exist in converse. In her stunning debut album, we glimpse her indefatigable commitment to speak. Those thematic origins of this album at times center around Black resistance, love and the inexhaustible quest for joy.

As a community organizer, surrealist blues poet and teacher aja monet moves between mediums, each one an element to her writing. Here, organizing and activism aren’t the point, they’re the process. The endgame is liberation and the poems, the music, and the art serve as the scribe of the time. Building off a tradition rooted in oratorical facility aja is the conduit for her predecessors to channel through. At any given time you’ll find the revolutionary spirit of Audre Lorde and the Last Poets, you’ll feel June Jordan, Amiri Baraka, Jayne Cortez and even the expressive ephemerality of a passing blue note. All appearing as generational trees from which these poems fruit.

aja is joined on her exceptional debut album by Chief Adjuah (trumpet), Samora Pinderhughes (piano), Elena Pinderhughes (flute), Luques Curtis (bass), Weedie Braimah (djembe) and Marcus Gilmore (drums). Together creating music that is insistent and unrelenting. There are songs reminiscent of jazz club virtuosity and melee, others of a healing balm in gilead, and the chords of Castaway move like that of the call to intercessory prayer. 

When you finally reach the end of this album, you are left with a similar feeling you get when heartbroken, the gravity of barrelling back down to earth, sopping wet with tears, out of breath, overcome with love, despair, hope, and all too aware that all of this, is over far too soon. When the poems do what they do, they do absolutely everything.

Aja Monet
WRK!