Thursday, December 30, 2010

Liberated Muse in 2010

(In photo: Liberated Muse members who attended the 1st Reader's With Attitude Author's Pavillion in Richmond, VA. l to r: Moon, RJ Johnson, Sharon Lawrence, Mahoganee, Serena Wills)

Thank you for spending 2010 with Liberated Muse. For those who have been with us since the site's inception in 2008, I want to extend a grateful thank you for your support.

Liberated Muse is a space for creative folk to engage. Since 2008, the site has been the home space for connections and opportunities, where dozens of artists have corresponded and networked to create work, promote events and share with their community. This year, some of our achievements included:
  • Feb. 2010: The 1st To Haiti, With Love Benefit Concert to support the nonprofit after the devastating earthquake which killed hundreds of thousands in the small island country. To this day, the effects of the earthquake have been tremendous. The "To Haiti With Love" concert featured artwork by visual artist CHOKE and performances by Dionne, Enoch 7th Prophet, Head-Roc, Quineice, Teisha Marie and Anonamas ft/The Bangladesh Project. Stay tuned for further benefit concerts to support Haiti in 2011.
  • Feb. 2010: Liberated Muse was a featured site in the 2010 Music Podcast Consortium's Cupid's Hunt Podcast Collaboration which was founded by Liberated Muse member Todd Grundy.
  • March 2010: Liberated Muse's Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman hosted the Author's Speak showcase at the 1st Reader's With Attitude Author's Pavillion in Richmond, VA. Several Liberated Muse members participated or attended, including writers Kevin Sabio, RJ Johnsonand Serena Wills, musician Afi Makalani, spoken word artist/rapper Sharon Lawrence and singer Mahoganee who was the featured musical act.
  • May 2010: Liberated Muse's Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest served as a community partner for the highly successful AudioTrip event produced by Lil So So Productions.
  • June 2010: Liberated Muse Productions presented the play "Running: AMOK" in 2010, presenting a preview of the play at Annie's Art Gallery which attracted a great turn-out and also featured a live concert featuring singers Dionne, Teisha Marie, Anonamas and Quineice who also starred in the 2010 season of Running: AMOK.
  • July 2010: Running: AMOK debuted in the 5th Annual Capital Fringe Fest
  • July 2010: Liberated Muse Productions presented the 3rd Annual Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest which featured numerous Liberated Muse members including Gods'illa, Substantial, Enoch 7th Prophet, Quineice, Anonamas, Colie Williams, and more.
  • August 2010: Liberated Muse received a certificate of appreciation from the US Census Bureau for helping the Census Bureau in 2009 to reach citizens who had yet to complete their census form. The US Census Bureau was a 2009 sponsor of the Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest.
  • October 2010: The Liberated Muse artist community re-launched after shutting down in August.
  • November 2010: The Liberated Muse publication Liberated Muse Volume I: How I Freed My Soul was featured at the 2010 Black Age of Comics Convention in Chicago, Illinois. The Black Age of Comics Convention is founded by Liberated Muse member Turtel Onli.
We are looking forward to collaborating with you in 2011. We will be calling for artists to perform, writers and visual artists to contribute to upcoming online and print publications and patrons to attend our events, which include a Spring season of Running: AMOK, the return of the Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest and our monthly benefit concert series. We are always looking for volunteers, as well. Email us at for more information on how to get involved!!

-Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman

Thursday, December 23, 2010

FREE DOWNLOAD: Common Folk: Voices of a Movement Volume I (2010)

Movements of political change have always been driven by art and music. When an issue needs to be communicated to the masses, in a language that everyone understands, art is ultimately the quickest messenger.

Common Folk: Voices of a Movement (2010) was a 3 part concert series exploring & creating a new conversation on the topics of Health, Immigration and the Environment. It provided a platform and stage for musicians, poets, and speakers from around the country to address these issues through an open call for submissions. The concert series took place at Bus Boys and Poets in Washington, DC. The pieces in this compilation CD are drawn from both the live performances and also online submissions.

One Common Unity, the creator of this project, is a grassroots non-profit organization based in Washington, DC which for the past 10 years has been supporting a movement for peace education and the building of a non-violent culture through music and art.

Be sure to download for FREE this compilation CD which features Liberated Muse members Enoch 7th Prophet, Mahoganee and Princess of Controversy and Liberated Muse founder Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Night Catches Us In Theaters Now

The new movie "Night Catches Us", written by Tanya Hamilton, is set in 1970s Philadelphia. Writer Tanya Hamilton said she wanted to make a movie that was "doggedley African-American" and from the trailer and clips below, she has confidently succeeded, featuring a period of African-American history that is hardly ever seen focused on the Black Panther movement. The plot centers around a romance and coming-home story. After years away, an ex-black panther returns to his old neighborhood only to find himself drawn right back into the rivalries and love affair he left behind. The movie stars Anthony Mackie and Kerry Washington and music by the hip-hop group The Roots.

Night Catches Us
Written and Directed by Tanya Hamilton
Starring Anthony Mackie, Kerry Washington, Wendell Pierce, Jamie Hector
Running time: 90 minutes
Rated R for language, some sexuality and violence.
Opened this month at West End Cinema.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Liberated Muse Member Diallo Sumbry Brings Kwanzaa to U Street

Liberated Muse member Diallo Sumbry is never at a loss for something to do. As manager of the nationally-acclaimed dance group The Beat Ya Feet Kings, manager of GRAMMY-nominated singer Maimouna Youssef and the afrocentric music group Farafina Kan, he is always on the move. This Sunday, through his company The Adinkra Group, Diallo will be co-presenting "Umoja on U" a Kwanzaa Celebration honoring the holiday of Kwanzaa as well as well-known DC community workers. Click HERE to read more.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


Visual, Literary & Performance Artists, This is About Your Money!

Friday, December 17, 2010 - 10:00 a.m.
John A. Wilson Building – Council Chamber Room 500
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20004
Councilmember Michael A, Brown, Chairperson of the Committee on Housing and Workforce Development, announces a public oversight roundtable on the creation of job in the District creative economic community. This roundtable continues the discussion on this important growth industry and its potential for substantial job creation and workforce development. The public oversight roundtable will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, December 17, 2010 in Council Chamber, Room 500, of the John A. Wilson Building.

Those who wish to testify should contact Drew Hubbard, Committee Director, at (202) 727-8230, or via e-mail at and provide their name, address, telephone number, organizational affiliation and title (if any) by close of business Thursday, December 16, 2010. Persons wishing to testify are encouraged, but not required, to submit 15 copies of written testimony. Witnesses should limit their testimony to three minutes.

(Thanks to DC Advocates for the Arts for the intel)

Liberated Muse Member Events This Month:




Do you have an event coming up?? Be sure to upload it in our Events calendar for FREE! Uploading your event makes it searchable via Google and garners a wide audience range that may extend outside of your regular fan base. Oh yeah, and it's free! Visit to upload your events, blogs, photos and videos. Invite your friends.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Liberated Muse Member Events Coming Up

December's here and Liberated Muse members (those who have profiles on the website and upload their events and other info to the system) have a bunch of things happening this month. Check some of it out:

DEC. 3 - 12: Liberated Muse member Pam Ward stars in Atlas Theater's production of "Swingtime". 
Written & Directed by Tom Mallan
Conceived in collaboration with Burnett Thompson
Music Director and Pianist Jean Baptiste

Fab songs from the Fabulous Forties tell Swingtime’s story of showbiz, war, discrimination and cultural identity. Cast: Vince Borrelli, W. Ellington Felton, Marshall Keys, Laura Lewis, Tammy Roberts, Alvaro Rodríguez, Pam Ward Click here for more details

DEC. 8: This show features the story of Liberated Muse member Melani N. Douglas and other DC residents in this community voice project. 
Click the flyer for more details.

DEC 17-20: What do a playground, a therapist’s office and a nightclub have in common?????? Join rapper, actress and every-woman Melissa "Princess" Best-Nichols aka Princess of Controversy to find out! Princess presents this one-woman show on womens’ thoughts, stories and and her own personal memoirs.

DEC. 17: Liberated Muse founder Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman will be featured at this month's HOME @ Hillyer Art Space. Hillyer Open Mic Events occur on the third friday of every month, and feature a stunning array of the district's poetic talent. Feature poets perform work in a variety of styles and take the audience for a personal journey into their work. Host Fred Joiner delves even deeper in his post-performance interviews with feature performers, encouraging them to illuminate their personal histories, influences, and perspectives. The interviews allow for a heightened discourse which helps to unveil the mystery behind the words.
Click here for information.

Visit for more member events


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Call for Acts: Alternate ROOTS Fest 2011

Alternate ROOTS is pleased to announce artist opportunities to perform at ROOTS Fest 2011: Many Communities, One Voice, a national arts festival celebrating the very best of our nation’s local art in honor of ROOTS’ 35th Anniversary (to learn more about ROOTS, please visit ROOTS Fest 2011 will be held June 22-26, 2011 in Baltimore, MD. As part of this national event, five days and evenings of local, regional and national performances, workshops, case studies, community dialogues and more will be presented. The performance/artwork content of ROOTS Fest 2011 will highlight the broad variety of performance and visual arts in multiple disciplines in various venues across the city. There will be a two day outdoor festival performance with multiple stages and at least one main stage that are all open to the general public.

The producers also seek to identify the number of artists who may be interested in site-specific performances. If you are interested in this option, please note it on your application form.

It is preferred that interested artists have been engaged in local art/community-based art-making or have been involved in a professionally-run entity/organization for a minimum of three years and have a history of their work being presented within the professional arts industry.

Outdoor Festival - Saturday, June 25 and Sunday, June 26, 2011 (Festival performances will be scheduled beginning late morning through the evening.) There is a probability that there will be outdoor performances beginning Friday, June 24th.

*Technical/dress rehearsals will take place on Thursday, June 24 and Friday/Saturday earlier in the day before an artist’s scheduled performance, as needed.

Please see attached fact sheet to learn more about the outdoor performance venue in West Baltimore, MD, also known as the Highway to Nowhere. The location of the festival will be on 52 acres of green space atop the highway.

Why participate:
ROOTS Fest 2011 is designed to attract a national audience of 25,000 to 35,000 people, the majority of whom will come from the Baltimore/Washington, DC metro area and the eastern seaboard. The outdoor festival performances offer an enormous opportunity for local artists to be seen by the local Baltimore and Washington, DC metropolitan community, a range of presenters, and a broad audience of people who appreciate local arts.

How to apply:
Alternate ROOTS is currently accepting submissions. Please fill out the attached form and submit a video of the actual selection/work you wish to perform. The selection/work can be up to a maximum of 10-12 minutes.  Please do not send video montages as your work sample.

The deadline to submit is: December 31st, 2010.

Please note: Alternate ROOTS will make all selections of performers and artists for ROOTS Fest 2011 events.

Is there an artist fee?
Artists will receive a stipend, and other potential support such as per diem and housing, to participate in the Festival. Once programming decisions have been made all artists must submit a detailed list of their production requirements. Adequate production crew will be on hand: ROOTS Fest technical directors, lighting directors, sound & light board ops, stage management, etc. Any additional costs associated with the performance are the artists’ responsibility and will not be underwritten by Alternate ROOTS or ROOTS Fest 2011 organizers.

How do I get more information?
Send questions to:
Cheles Rhynes/MRP Inc.
Attn: Festival Producer
ROOTS Fest 2011
P.O. Box 5163
Capitol Heights, MD 20791
301-350-0092 wk/fax
301-980-0966 cell

Monday, November 22, 2010

Check Out's Series on 30 Albums Celebrating 20 Years

Who were some of the artists you were listening to 20 years ago? Can you even remember that far back? When you think of soul music, think of some of the artists who were thriving on the charts and making the 90's one of the last decades of megastars who not only looked good but were talented as well? is helping you take that trip down memory lane with their recent series (that ends soon) that showcases thirty of the top albums of 1990 that celebrated 20 years this year. Here are some of the albums already covered:

For the full list of albums reviewed and to read the posts on, click here
Who makes your own list of best remembered albums of 1990?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Anthology of Rap is a New Book Highlighting the Past 30 Years of Rap

Writers Adam Bradley and Andrew DuBois'  presented their book The Anthology of Rap to a packed house in Washington, DC at the historic Lincoln Theater this past Tuesday, and appearances by Common and Kurtis Blow brought the house down as the audience was treated to impromptu performances at the free event. Bradley and DuBois have edited an anthology that brings together more than three hundred lyrics written over 30 years, from the "old school" to the "golden age" to the present day and rappers Kurtis Blow, Kurtis Blow, Jr. and Common were on hand to talk about their own rap careers and how hip hop has transformed their lives.

Unfortunately, I had to leave this wonderful event, presented by the Smithsonian's African-American History Museum and Words, Beats & Life early, so I missed the later impromptu performance by the legendary Kurtis Blow and his son who performs internationally now. But from what I caught on Twitter, the performance of "The Breaks" was like that. If you are in the DC area and in the mood for more events centered around hip-hop, be sure to check out Words, Beats & Life's Remixing the Art of Social Change International Teach-In that is happening the rest of this week with workshops and events featuring the father of hip hop, DJ Kool Herc, and other notables.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Remixing the Art of Social Change: A Hip-Hop Approach 2010

REMIXING THE ART OF SOCIAL CHANGE: A HIP-HOP APPROACH 2010 is not your average conference or gathering. This year it takes place for six days from Nov. 16-21. It’s a teach-in where folks from across the world come together in Washington, D.C. to participate in a unique experience that’s both action-oriented and community-based.

The teach-in outlines the tools and resources necessary to develop curriculum, programs, and artistic and scholarly work based on hip-hop culture. The presenters at Remixing the Art of Social Change are the artists and educators who never gave up on hip-hop and are still actively working through it to promote love, peace, unity and having fun. Last year's teach-in featured pioneer Afrika Bambaataa and scholars, youth, organizations, artists and activists from around the world. This year's REMIXING THE ART OF SOCIAL CHANGE 2010 will feature films, promote advocacy, networking, community building, hold a career fair, present live music, interactive presentations, peer-to-peer skill sharing, arts exhibitions, and of course group ciphers!

Liberated Muse's Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman is one of this year's host/selection committee and will also be a panelist. View below for panel details. Click here for the full teach-in agenda.
Liberated Muse's Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman (far right) is a panelist on Day 5 at the Washington Convention Center

Day Five Events (Saturday November 20th)
Walter E. Washington Convention Center
801 Mount Vernon Place Northwest Washington, DC 20001-3614

It’s All About the Benjamins: What About Before the Money Comes?
Organization | Artist

Guest Panelists
1) Junious "House" Brickhouse, Urban Artistry
2) Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Capital Hip Hop Soul Festival
3) Nichol Johnson, Art of Soul
4) Magee McIlvaine, Nomadic Wax
5) Paige Hernandez-Funn, Independent Performing Artist

View some of the panelists in action below:

Paige Hernandez (courtesy of YouTube & CASRAM Access)

Junious "House" Brickhouse of Urban Artistry

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Top Open Mics in the DC Area: Add Yours To the List

So, where are some of the hottest open mics in the Washington DC area? Well word has it that a lot of them are on or around the U Street corridor in Washington DC. Here are some we were able to find. Add your own in the comments section below:

1) Up and Up Open Mic- Tuesdays- Bohemian Caverns, U Street
The show takes place Every Tuesday @ LIV Nightclub 2001 11th Street NW, Washington, DC. **Admission adjustment** is $5.00 b4 band starts (projected 9p) & $10.00 after.

2) Busboys and Poets
Every Tuesday @ 9pm $4 14th and V street

*Wristbands for Tuesday night open mic at 14th & V are sold all day in the Bookstore beginning at 10AM until sold out.

3)Queen Makeda,1917 9th st. NW, Washington, DC, 20009
Every Thursday, hosted by Mr. BriggsManagement

4) The Channel Inn  
650 Water St, SW, Washington DC
Every Sunday 7pm-midnight, Free admission, drink minimum

5) Annie's Art Gallery, 4814 Allentown Way, Camp Springs, MD, 20748
Monthly Open Mic

Open Mic With: from John Ledbetter on Vimeo.

Marsha Ambrosius Sings w/ Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder & Isley Brothers on New Mix Tape

Former member of the hit group Floetry, Marsha Ambrosius is wasting no time in transforming her image into one of the singing vixen, offering this free download, Sextape Part 1 which is a preface to her debut solo album which drops in the coming weeks.

Once you trip over to to download the free mixtape, come back and give us your feedback in the space below.

Gloria Ry'ann Headlines December Benefit Concert

Gloria Ry'ann
On December 17, 2010, Peace of Mind Services and Stevie’s Soul LLC will be working together to conduct a “Beyond the Holiday’s Benefit Show” to help less fortunate children  and needy families during the holidays and beyond. All proceeds will
benefit Peace of Mind Services which provides services to needy  families and children for the Holidays and beyond. Entertainers will be the Clean Comedy show featuring Howard G (Kiss My Bumper Commercial), and R&B recording sensation Gloria Ry'ann. There will be a live band, fashion show, vendors, door prizes, raffles, free food and cash bar.

DEC. 17, 2010 from 6:00p.m-10:00p.m

        The Waxter Center
            1000 Cathedral Street
             Baltimore MD 21201

Bring a can good, non perishable item or a toy donation and receive
one free drink. (With proper id)

Adults: $15 in advance, $25 at the door

Children under 12: $10

To purchase a ticket or for information about being a vendor or
sponsor at this event, please feel free to contact Nichelle
410-779-6331 or Stevie 410-419-6629.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Job Opps for Creatives, Nina Simone Lives, and Liberated Muse in New York

Visit Felicia Pride's Backlist for Job Opportunities
Liberated Muse member Felicia Pride's company Backlist has a new resource online to provide paid job opportunities for educators and creatives. Check out this week's list of opportunities here. Job opportunities this week include work positions with the American Poetry Museum, O Magazine, the Metropolitan Opera and more!

Nina Simone Lives On

So, last night, soul divas Ledisi, Jill Scott, Kelly Price and Marcia Ambrosius tackled the Nina Simone classic "Four Women" on the BET program "Black Girls Rock".

Amazing is an understatement to how beautiful the collaboration was. Check it out for yourself below and visit DC's own Saartjie Project to learn about their upcoming performance that was inspired by the song. If you are in a blogging mood, we would love to hear your feedback about the movie "For Colored Girls" that opened last week and also featured the song "Four Women" during its commercials, the song is on the movie's soundtrack. Write a blog on about the movie, we'd love to read it!

Liberated Muse in New York

Moon presenting in 2008
Liberated Muse's co-founder Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman was in Bronx, New York this past Saturday to facilitate a workshop for the annual conference Mosaic Literary Conference. Moon has participated in the Mosaic Literary Conference as a facilitator since 2008, presenting various strategies on how to connect young people with literature. Participants in her workshop this year included a wonderful assortment of talented creatives, including author and activist Lora Rene Tucker, writer and arts therapist L'Oreal Snell, and spoken word artist Luis Bernard.

Liberated Muse Volume II: Book of the Creatives

The second book in the Liberated Muse series will profile ten successful visual, literary and performance artists who have created avenues for themselves, inspiring other artists following in their path. The book provides creatives-in-training with an in-depth look at how living an authentic life involves a willingness to take risks and stay authentic despite some of life's toughest hardships. Due for release Summer 2011. Call for literary and visual art for the anthology Liberated Muse Volume III: Insanely Free is COMING SOON. You can still buy the first anthology in the series, it's available here on

Monday, November 1, 2010

Member of the Month, Floacist Listening Party & Join Our Network

Hey all! Happy Monday. Check Out Some of Our News...

November Liberated Muse Member of the Month

Chenyelu Bomani
, a long-time member, is this month's Member of the Month. Chenyelu's musical background began as a child with various percussion instruments and he quickly discovered that he had an "ear" for music. Influenced by numerous old school Blues legends and the modern soulful sounds of R&B tempershis music with Jazz and Latin rhythms. Chenyelu produces a unique sound that has a wide appeal. Visit our main page at to learn more about Chenyelu

Floacist Listening Party- Nov. 4

The NuSol Renaissance presents
The Floacist
An Exclusive Listening Party

Formerly of Floetry,Natalie the Floacist, will release her album on November 9th in store
across the country. Mr. Briggs Management will feature an exclusive
listening party @
1917 9th St NW
...on November 4th with
giveaways, live performances and a host of special invited guests. Liberated Muse member Quineice will perform.

Invite Friends to

Be sure to invite your friends to and/or join us on Facebook or Twitter. Thanks to you, we already have over 2, 000 members between our three networks.

Friday, October 29, 2010

REWIND: Liberated Muse Getting In The Halloween Spirit

Last year this time, Liberated Muse had partnered with Authentic Art Consulting for FreeSoul @ ArtSpring. We had fun offering face painting and kids' activities and, of course, lots of candy! Reminisce with us by checking out the video below. Performers included Liberated Members Quineice, and Gary Young, with Lyle Link and Sadie Flick and a special appearance by Ne'a Posey. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

We Vote SoulBounce. You Should, Too

The nominees for the 2010 Soul Train Awards have been dominating the internet. What is new this year are nominees for the   BEST SOUL SITES // Soul Train Award 2010. Yay! Well, first, let's get it out there-- Liberated Muse did not get nominated. Booo. Not this year at least...but some really great sites were nominated, including which Liberated Muse's co-founder, Moon (me) is contributing editor for. Many Liberated Muse members have been featured on Soulbounce over the years, including Kenny Wesley, Teisha Marie, Substantial, Quineice, and Dionne. Soulbounce even covered the Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest during our inaugural year (before I became a writer/editor for the site), so our loyalty stands strong with Soulbounce!
The winning site will recieve two VIP tickets to the taping of the 2010 award show in Atlanta GA on November 10th, airfare and accomodations, a special Soul Train Award during the on-air pre-show, access to the gifting suite and of course: Bragging rights! The Runner-up site will receive two Kodak z18 Flip Cams. So who wins? Well thats up to you the readers. VOTING STARTS TODAY and end November 3rd at Noon. Visit HERE to vote.

Let's Play Your Music-- Singers, Rappers, Spoken Word Artists, We're Talking to You

A message to all members of Liberated Muse

Serena Wills, poet

Musicians, Singers, Rappers, Poets--

Do you have a Reverbnation Music Player? If so, we would love to feature your music on our main page. Here's what you do-- let us know you are interested in having your music featured on the main page by:

(1) Pasting your music player's embed code in our comment section HERE, making sure that it is NOT on automatic play when you copy and paste and

(2) Adding a mini bio about who you are and your work-- no longer than five sentences and

that's it!

Mahoganee, Singer

If you aren't a singer/musician, etc. but have an artist in mind who is part of our community and who you would like us to feature on the main page and they have a Reverbnation music widget, follow the steps above! Only Liberated Muse members or former performers in the Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest will be considered.

Becoming a member is easy, just create a FREE profile today.

(Photos above of Liberated Muse members Serena Wills, poet & Mahoganee, singer-- both performing at the 2010 RWA Author's Pavillion in Richmond, VA, produced by the Readers With Attitude book club & co-sponsored by Liberated Muse)

Visit Liberated Muse at:

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Kanye West's New Vid Best Exemplifies Liberating One's Muse

What do you think about Kanye West's latest video which is actually a 30-minute short film? Featuring model Selita Banks, Kanye presents an artistic rendering of his past year's struggle with ego, social etiquette, loss and self-esteem. Do you love it or hate it? Are you over Kanye West after last year's shenanigans with Taylor Swift or is that old news? Share your comments below.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Liberated Muse in Chicago for the Black Age of Comics

Liberated Muse member Turtel Onli is founder of the annual Black Age of Comics Convention that celebrated its 13th year this year last week, Oct. 15-16. Maceo and I traveled to Chicago to support Turtel and to represent Liberated Muse at this annual event. Turtel had invited me to perform and share readings from the Liberated Muse publication Liberated Muse Volume I: How I Freed My Soul and Maceo was asked to facilitate an artist meeting that was held after the convention with illustrators who were at the convention displaying their work. We both arrived before the convention and got a chance to check out the city before the convention began.

For starters, Chicago is an arts town. However, you probably wouldn't know that because it hasn't received the attention that places like New York and LA receive as being art meccas. However, Chicago epitomizes an arts town. Everywhere you turn, there is a splendid example of artistry- from the architecture in the downtown area, to the sculptures sprinkled throughout the city from folks like Picasso, there is art everywhere. Performance art is abundant as well, as it should be. The Blues grew out of Chicago. Here are some shots I snapped while on a tour of the city.

On the 15th when I performed readings and my original tune "All of Me", I was part of the Bronzeville Art Trolley tour which took folks to different art galleries in the Bronzeville community in Chicago. The venue I performed at, Little Black Pearl, was part of the tour and folks got off the trolley car to come in and view art on the walls by illustrators from the Black Age of Comics. Little Black Pearl does amazing things in the community, providing after-school programming for youth in addition to showcasing art. Check them out here. I got to introduce these visitors to the Liberated Muse book and represent DC while I was at it. It was a blast. I performed with a Chicago-based keyboardist, Aki Antonia, who actually hails from Bronzeville. Regina Brown, a vocalist who tours as a support vocalist for artists like Gladys Knight, shared the stage with me prior to her amazing performance the next day at the Black Age of Comics Convention. Check out some of the photos below that Aki's son Atiba took of us performing. Also, be sure to visit Aki's blog here. She blogs about arts happenings in her community.

Me (Moon) and Aki Antonia at Little Black Pearl performing

Turtel describes the convention as a group exhibitions, lectures, vendors, signings, and workshops. The year's convention was amazing, featuring well-known author LA Banks and Black illustrators from across the country, including artists Eric Battle, Arie Monroe and Afua Richardson.

I got video of LA Banks giving an author's talk during one of the lectures and was inspired by her testimony of why no one should give up on their talents. Here is one video out of the four that I was able to get. Visit our site at to view all four (each is less than 10 minutes)to hear her hilarious personal stories.

The world's first Black Age of Comics Convention was given in Chicago IL Feb. 1993. The term, "The Black Age of Comics", meaning creators & products derived from the Urbane, indie, or cosmic experience and independent creativity. It welcomes all positive creative professionals, innovators, students and fans.Turtel should be proud of his event-- Maceo and I had an incredible time. Here are some photos from the event. Make sure you plan to attend next year!
Me (Moon) and Maceo representing Liberated Muse in Chicago

Illustrators and Artists of the Black Age (photo by Maceo Thomas)

Artist Arie Monroe

Me (Moon) with artist Ken Ray

The Fringe by Steven Harris. Love this comic. Bought this t-shirt.

Read more about the Black Age of Comics here