Come help us kick off our 2014-15 Music on the Porch series with North Carolina hip-hop/funk rebels Shirlette Ammons and jocElyn Ellis. In addition to their groundbreaking solo work, both musicians are part of the Next Level hip-hop diplomacy program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and directed by UNC Music professor Mark Katz. Bring a picnic blanket and stay for a while!
Shirlette Ammons is a Mt. Olive native and Durham-based poet and musician who also directs a youth arts program. Her recent projects include And Lovers Like, a collaborative album with the Dynamite Brothers, and Matching Skin, a poetry collection from Carolina Wren Press. Ammons’s debut solo album, Twilight for Gladys Bentley, updates and reinterprets the work of an unsung blues singer who defied sexual and gender norms while putting on some of the hippest performances during Harlem’s Jazz Age.
Charlotte-area singer and songwriter jocElyn Ellis’s soulful voice and writing talent combine for a powerful mix. jocElyn released her crowdfunded debut album, Life of a Hologram, in November 2013. She has performed around the world with Wyclef Jean, Everclear, and her previous band, The Alpha Theory. She recently launched a new songwriting project, The Apple Seed Society.