Apr 19, 2014
Apr 15, 2014
Apr 1, 2014
Blues singer Ada Brown is best known for her recordings of “Ill Natural Blues”, “Break O’ Day Blues”, and “Evil Mama Blues.
Brown’s early career was spent primarily on stage in musical theater and vaudeville. She was a founding member of the Negro Actors Guild of America in 1936, and worked at the London Palladium and on Broadway in the late 1930s. She sang with Fats Waller in the film Stormy Weather in 1943, and followed it with appearances in Harlem to Hollywood.
Mar 31, 2014
Mar 29, 2014
Mar 25, 2014
Hazel Scott became a “niece” or “little sister” to many entertainers of the 1930’s/40’s—singer Billie Holiday was one of them.
Billie was very protective of Hazel—so protective that she once embarrassingly chased her out of a nightclub she’d managed to sneak into. Hazel was 15 years old at the time.
Mar 22, 2014
Mar 22, 2014
Mar 19, 2014
Black Weirdo Of The Week 14: Tiona McClodden
Born in Blytheville, AK. Raised in Greenville, SC. Living in Philadelphia, PA.
I produce and distribute my work through my film and media imprint, Harriet’s Gun Media. Most of my work examines the queer black experience in the most specific ways and broad ways simultaneously. My work takes a look social realism, re-memory and more recently biomythography. I’m trying to build a decent body of work and so far I’ve completed these films- black./womyn.: conversations with lesbians of African descent, a short narrative film Bumming Cigarettes, and an experimental film portrait, roots.|&|rigor. featuring my buddy and Philly based sculpture artist Lorna Williams. I also just had my first solo exhibition of the first part of my upcoming four part series, Be Alarmed: The Black Americana Epic, Movement I - The Visions which I plan to mount in a few cities this year. I try to stay working for the most part.
What is your craft/career/creative expression?
Filmmaker and visual artist. I produce conceptual narrative work-I’m into that “head to the hand” art thing and I’m constantly trying to work that out through motion picture format and now through physical production using my hands. I’m in a transition from primarily documentary moving into this hybrid fiction/non-fiction place of work. I’m into producing “insider art”.
How long have you been working on your craft?
Professionally since 2002 when I quit working at a café, dropped out of college, and started working with a mentor at the time.
Why do you consider yourself a Black Weirdo?
I’m cool with fucking around with the formula that makes me who I am. I’m black, queer, woman, and a bunch of other shit and I refuse to partition my shit. I’m definitely about Black Excellence at all times, no matter the form of work or presentation. I’m anti square shit and monolithic. I embrace my weirdness and that of other folks. I move in my body and work with all these things at the same time unapologetically. I think the idea of Black Weirdo is fitting because it has no limitations really, there is no blueprint, and so I’m down for it.
Upcoming events/ projects?
I’m creating some new work with some of my fellow artists and friends called #DRUGMONEYBOUGHTTHISDRESS which is looking at black artists, the work we produce, accessibility to that work and class politics. Still screening my short Bumming Cigarettes and working on my second installment of my Be Alarmed film series, The Seamstress. Finishing up a script to my experimental narrative fiction feature Flowers which will feature black queer femme identified folks as the main protagonists. And working on a music video project with you folks-THEESatisfaction for your new album!