Blog Archives

Gospel recording artist Tramaine Hawkins.

Bay Area African American Women in Music: Tramaine Hawkins takes Gospel to Selma and the Symphony

As a teenager growing up in Berkeley during the 1960s, Tramaine Hawkins, the daughter of Ronald and Lois “the Pie Queen” Davis, was well aware of the Civil Rights Movement. She was too busy, however, [...]
Lady Bianca

Bay Area African American Women in Music: Lady Bianca Brings Urgency to Blues & Gospel

Whether wailing with her multi-octave pipes and rhythmically pumping piano in nightclubs and at blues festivals, or every Sunday morning at Oakland’s Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church, Lady Bianca infuses her songs with breathtaking urgency. [...]
Bay Area vocalist Linda Tillery.

Bay Area African American Women in Music: Eclecticism remains Linda Tillery’s Forte

Ever since she answered a newspaper classified ad in 1967 that read, “Wanted: One Soul Singer” – which happened to be the title of her favorite Johnnie Taylor album – Linda Tillery has been one [...]
Diana Gameros. Photo by José Luis Aguirre/ElMensajero.

Oakland East Bay Symphony Presents “Notes from Mexico”

Oakland East Bay Symphony and Music Director Michael Morgan continue their popular and insightful annual “Notes from . . .” series this season with “Notes from Mexico,” featuring composer/performer Diana Gameros, pianist Llewellyn Sanchez-Werner and [...]
"Big Mama" Thornton

Bay Area African American Women in Music: Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton Belted the Blues

Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton, arguably the greatest blues woman of the second half of the 20th century, was alternately tough and tender whether singing on stage and on records, or interacting with musical and [...]
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Dizzy Wright, Casey Veggies, Pell Will Perform at Benefit for Eric Garner’s Family

The Bay Area event production collective HGMNY is hosting a “Concert for Justice” to benefit the family of Eric Garner, Thursday, April 9, at the New Parish, 579 18th St.in Downtown Oakland. The fundraiser will [...]
From left: Lashawn Holcomb, Alvin Gilmore, ChauntiAna Thomas, W. Allan Taylor, Ricardo Moncrieff, Carol Thomas, Reggie Murray, and Oshalla Diana Marcus. (Not shown: Chauntina YaVette Keene-Thomas). Photo by Godfrey Lee.

Readers Theater Puts on August Wilson’s “Piano Lesson” at Hannah Gallery

August Wilson’s play “The Piano Lesson” was performed at the Hannah Gallery in Marin City Friday, Feb. 27. Oshalla Diana Marcus directed the play, presenting it as a Community Readers Theater in which actors read [...]