Announcing Funk Parade’s Final Programming!

Funk Parade’s Final Programming Announcement!

Funk Parade will take place this Saturday, May 3rd in various locations in the U Street neighborhood. Check out the Full list of programming for the Day Fair, Parade, and Music Festival from 12 pm to 10 pm!

FP Poster

DAY FAIR (Noon-5pm) ———————————————————————————

Music, performance, art and workshops in areas along U Street from 9th St. NW to 16th St. NW will bring the neighborhood the spirit of Funk. Outdoor performance area programming will include:

M.A. Winter Performance Area Presented By Capital Bop

1423 U St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

CapitalBop presents two of the city’s most energizing improvisers, right in the cradle of D.C. jazz. The styles of Donvonte McCoy and Quincy Phillips (who’s just back from a world tour with Roy Hargrove) show the influence of classic bebop, ’90s hip-hop, gospel and so much else.


Courtesy of Chuck Levin’s and 7DrumLessons

Sponsor Activations

· Yelp! – Giveaways and Swag

· DestinationDC – Learn about events business in your community.

· BicycleSpaceDC – Raffles, Info Classes, Boombotix

Local Vendors

District Doughnut; Curvy Chix Chariot; Banana Love Muffins; Cherry Blossom Creative; Unitees


City First Bank will be doing face painting for kids on the bank’s front steps.

The Funk Parade Reeves Center Performance Area

14th St. NW & U St. NW; 1PM-4:30PM

Program Line-Up & Details

1PM-1:45PM: Howard U Step Performers & Dancers

1:45PM-3:15PM: The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts presents street performer Derek McAlister and Evan Young

3:15PM-3:30PM: District Affiliates Fashion Flash Mob

3:30PM-4PM: Batala Drummers


DC Bike Party’s Sound Bike will be providing Funky Beats for the people all afternoon and collaborating with Musx on the Musx Live Jukebox.

Sponsor Activations

· Hail0 – Music, free promo codes, Hailo community partnerships and more.

· GoodShuffle – New Membership and Community Booth

· MusX – Check out Live App Demos and MUSX Live Jukebox

· Hope Foundation – Community Info Table

· ANC – Meet your ANC Reps

· Safe Access DC – Community Info Table

· Marc Morgan  - Meet Marc Morgan, At-Large DC Council Candidate

· Thurgood Marshall Center – Raffles, Games and Giveaways

· Headcount – Register to Vote and win Sweetlife Festival Tickets

· Think Local First


·   8AM-1PM: 14th & U Street Farmers Market will be Open

· Fashion Flash Mob & Street Fashion Show organized by: Lettie Gooch, Junction Vintage, & District Affiliates. Make sure to visit our friends over in the Fashion District between 15th and 16th on U Street.

·   Kennedy Center Street Performers


Hung Tao Choy Mei Leadership Institute Presents: “The Return of Black Broadway”

The Duke Ellington Stage; 13th St. NW & U St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

12PM-12:20PM: Universal Capoeira Angola

12:30PM-12:50PM: Faycez You Know (band)

1PM-1:20PM: Da Originals (hip hop dance)

1:30PM-1:50PM: Frankojazz (band)

2PM-2:20PM: Head Roc (hip hop artist)

2:30PM-2:50PM: DJ Break

3PM-3:20PM: Hung Tao Choy Mei “Lucky Lions”

3:30PM-3:50PM: Thaylobleu (band)

4PM-4:20PPM: Malcolm X Drummers & Dancers


Courtesy of Chuck Levin’s, 7DrumLessons and Flashband Project

Industrial Bank Family Performance Area Presented by Words Beats & Life

2001 11th St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

12PM-1PM: DJ Eskimo

1PM-1:30PM: Dance Exhibition Princess Mhoon Dance Institute

1PM-3PM: Beat Production Workshop by  Beat Society

3PM-5PM: Words Beats & Life MC Workshops

3PM-3:30PM: Concert by Javier Starks

4PM-4:20PM: Words Beats & Life B-Boy Exhibition


Courtesy of Words Beats & Life

Sponsor Activations

Special thanks to the DC Humanities Council

· Industrial Bank – Community Welcoming Table for the Whole Family

· Relay Foods – Relay Foods Grab Bags and Discounts

Local Vendors

sPACYcLOUd; Capital Candy Jar; Pichardo Boutique; Andrew Lisi; Enterprise CarShare; Roxanne’s ARTiques; DC DYES; Capital City; Plush Beautybox


There will be an all-day, open-play, chess exhibition,face painting and a skate limbo contest by sPACYcLOUd, and mural painting by Albus Cavus.


Lee’s Flower Shop and Industrial Bank South Performance Area presented by Urban Artistry

1929 11th St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

Live artists will be painting murals on the One Love Massive bus, while Urban Artistry and Alliance Francaise provides street shows and dance instruction.


Courtesy of One Love Massive

Local Vendors

Simon Vintage; Art by Nathan Seay and Brayden Hooper; Sandi Galle Photography; Goshmob/Noondance; Finder’s Keepers Vintage; Todacouture


Urban Artistry and Alliance Francaise are currently participating in the Urban Corps 2014: Trans Atlantic Urban Dance Festival. Saturday’s programming is organized by Urban Artistry in collaboration with Alliance Francaise.

African American Civil War Memorial Museum Performance Area

10th St. NW & U St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

12PM: A Band Called Future

1PM:The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts presents Evan Young

1:30PM: The Funk Ark

2:15PM: Work It Studio Flash Mob

2:30PM: DC Legendary Musicians Band

3:30PM: Take Over Band

4:15PM: Maggot Brain Funkadelic Guitar Jam


Courtesy of our Sponsor Chuck Levin’s and Partners, 7DrumLessons and Flashband Project

Sponsor Activations

· Bank of Georgetown – Table Giveaways

· Chuck Levin’s – Meet & Greet

· WPFW – Meet & Greet with Radio Personalities

· ZipCarDC – Community Registration with Discounts and Swag

· DC Vote – Register to Vote and Get Involved

· Work It! Studio – Free Demo and Sample Class Instruction

· WeWantTheFunk – Fun Foam Fingers and Funk Paraphernalia

· DC Legendary Musicians – Meet & Greet DC Legends

· 7DrumLessons – Drum Lesson Sign-Ups

U Street Flea Funk Parade Market

9 ½ St. NW & U St. NW; 1:30PM-3:30PM

Program Line-Up & Details

Live Performance by Brass Connection!

District Flea Funk Parade Market

945 Florida Ave. NW; 1PM-4:30PM

Program Line-Up & Details

Live Brass Performances from Yamomanem, Kennedy Center Street Performers and additional guests.


District Flea will have vendors all day providing food and the only outdoor Beer Garden for Funk Parade Festival goers.

Along with performance areas, there will be other day fair activities happening around the neighborhood including:


Den of Thieves Vinyl Lounge

2005 14th St. NW; 12PM-5PM

Program Line-Up & Details

The Vinyl District Presents The Electric Cowbell Sound System at Den of Thieves (Funk Parade Edition). All vinyl sets by some of Washington DC’s most eclectic, global groove thumpers.

12PM: DJ Crown Vic.

1PM: DJ Steven Swann

2PM: Sir Ramases


4PM: Nucleus Bros.

Tech Embassy

Affinity Labs; 920 U St. NW; 11AM-3PM

Program Line-Up & Details

Program Line-Up & Details (continued)

Think of The Tech Embassy as a science fair, only you get to help make some of the experiments happen, right there in person — no matter how much, or how little, you know about “tech.”

Stop by to test drive a 3D printer, learn how local students are fighting food deserts, make your own LED light art, dig into the DC world of civic hacking, and more. The Embassy will also have a separate outpost at Hamiltonian Gallery (1353 U St. NW).

Tech Embassy Partners include: Code for DC, Code for Progress, Affinity Lab, DC Public Library and Digital Commons, Hamiltonian Gallery, Mapbox, The Open Technology Institute at the New America Foundation, and the Sunlight Foundation.

Project List for Tech embassy includes:

DC Music Project (a people’s history of live shows in the District), Name that Tech/Technology Should Be… (two interactive art installations by OTI), 3D Printing with DC Public Library, Heart Spark (heart attack prevention tech group), District Housing (a DC affordable housing project), Fort Fairmont (funk DJs with a laser light show), ANC Finder (hyperlocal govt!), Food Desert Mapping Project (starring the world’s brightest 10yr olds), OurDCSchools (policy response project re: school boundary change — important for parents), LED building station (maybe seed bombs, too), Q&A table out front with Code for DC and Code for Progress, and much much more..

Live Mural by Art Under Pressure

1342 U St. NW; All Day

Program Line-Up & Details

Art Under Pressure will sponsor the creation of a new mural near their new 1342 U Street location.  The mural will be a typographical celebration of U Street’s illustrious past. Titled “The Return of Black Broadway.” The mural will feature a quote from DC Hip-Hop elder, Head-Roc, who’s album with the same title, marks it’s 10-year anniversary.

Art Under Pressure Artists in Residence Eric B. Ricks, Cory L. Stowers, Ernesto Zeleya and more, will install the mural during the DC Funk Parade as part of the celebration.

Other Community Activities in the Area



Miss Pixie’s & 14th St. NW

Special discounts and prizes throughout the neighborhood and community supporters.

Merlot’s Masterpiece

Art Sale and Live Art Expo

Fainting Goat & Local 16

Hosting Funk themed brunches


After visiting their booth, you will get a discount coupon for frozen yogurt.

Ben’s Chili Bowl

Funk Parade Party in restaurant.


Roof Top Funk Party All-Day

The Mighty Funk Parade (5pm-7pm) ————————————————————-

Convening at Vermont and U Sts. NW. This is a PARTICIPATORY parade, not a watching parade. Come ready to dance, clap, sing, blow a horn, whatever. In addition to whomever wants to participate, the parade will include:

  • Asheru & The Ballou High School Marching Band

  • Batala Percussion Band

  • Hung Tao Choy Mei Lion and Dragon dancers

  • Yamomanem Jazz

  • BicycleSPACE riders

After the parade, FLASH MOP, an ever-changing, open-to-all crew of local do-gooders who whistle while they work it and boogie while they beautify, will clean up.

Parade Map:

MUSIC FESTIVAL (7pm-10pm) ———————————————————————

Free shows, in a dozen of the neighborhood’s finest venues. The lineup:



U Street Music Hall

9:30PM: Fort Knox Five

8:30PM: EU

7:30PM: Nappy Riddem

7PM: QDup


10PM: Cheick Hamala Diabate

9PM: Backbeat Underground

8PM: Joe Keyes “The Late Bloomer” and The Late Bloomer Band


7PM: Flashband Project - Flashband Funk Party

Patty Boom Boom

8PM: Lucky Dub

7PM: Kickoman

DC9 Nightclub

8:30PM: Elikeh Afropop

7:30PM: Black Masala

Between & After Sets: Sol Powered All Stars

Liv Nightclub DC

7:30PM: Clones of Funk

The Brixton:

8:30PM: Aztec Sun

7:30PM: Beyond Modern

Jojo Restaurant:

7PM: The Good Thing

Busboys and Poets:

7PM: A Special Edition of Live! From Busboys: Women of Funk  - Performances by B. Steady w/ DJ Pinstriped Rebel on the 1s and 2s! and Open Mic!

Twins Jazz Club

7:30PM: Tony Martucci

Work It! Studio by WandaWoman

7PM: Funk Dance Party featuring “The Root of Funk” with drum sensation Tiacoh Sadia

Fainting Goat

4PM-5PM: Toile

7PM-9PM: SwagFunk

AFTER PARTY ——————————————————————————————-

A music festival isn’t complete without an after party. Enjoy the following:

A big thank you to our a major sponsors including: JBG Corporation, BRINK Media, WJLA and News Channel 8, The Washington Informer, WeWork, Councilmember Jim Graham, Brightest Young Things, FotoWeek DC, and The Awesome Foundation.

For more news, including announcements of venues, band lineups, participating artists, sponsors and more, follow Funk Parade on Twitter at @FunkParade, on Facebook at, or go to

Donate! Volunteer! Get involved!  Email

#  #  #

About Funk Parade

Funk Parade honors the power of bringing people together and making them feel all right. That power is embodied in the spirit of funk, and the U Street neighborhood. It began with two people who love Washington, DC, live music, and the U Street neighborhood: Justin Rood, a lifelong DC resident, and Chris Naoum, whose organization Listen Local First has helped hundreds of musicians find audiences and gigs throughout the Washington area. The project has since been embraced by dozens of local businesses, neighborhood groups, community leaders, musicians and artists, who have pledged their support to the event. They hope you will join them and the mighty Funk Parade!

Full Festival Music Lineup for Kingman Island Bluegrass and Folk Festival


This is the most exciting time of the year for Listen Local First.  Two huge festivals in the pipeline, but the one we want to brag about in this post is The Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival presented by Whole Foods Market, happening Saturday April 26th on the beautiful Kingman and Heritage Islands.

This is the 5th year the festival is happening.  The first two year were literally a couple hundred neighbors, a keg of beer and a couple neighborhood bands pickin in a circle for a couple hours.  Last year the festival made a major leap with a main stage programmed from 1-8pm, two busking areas, a children stage, over a dozen food trucks, kayaks and nearly 8,000 visitors  attended throughout the day.

This year with the help of some amazing Sponsors, Whole Foods, Events DC and REI to name a few, the festival is well on it’s way to becoming one of the most unique, affordable, outdoor, all local music festivals in the city.  If you join us on the 26th, not only will you get to enjoy 5 stages of live music entertainment (including Children’s stage for families) but you get a Whole Foods game and refreshment tent, REI climbing wall, kayaks and outdoors skills training sessions, BicycleSPACE mini  race course and bike raffle, Boogie Babes children’s stage and craft area for kids, and of course the Food and Beer Trucks.

The music programming for the day will feature two main stages, two island stages, and a children’s stage. Over 30 amazing local musicians will be performing throughout the day. All of these musicians are from the DMV Region and perform around this area on a regular basis.

Take a look at the links below and decide which acts you’ll be checking out at the Festival.  Also check out the events leading up to the main event on April 26th:





1:00pm – 1:35pm Delafield String Band

1:45pm – 2:20pm King Street Bluegrass

2:30pm – 3:05pm Only Lonesome

3:15pm – 3:50pm 19th Street Band

4:00pm – 4:35pm Second String Band

4:45pm – 5:20pm By & By

5:30pm – 6:05pm Sligo Creek Stompers

6:15pm – 7:45pm Hackensaw Boys


Side Stage Artists: Performing in between mainstage acts

Linsay Deming

Jonny Grave

Lea Morris



1:00pm – 1:35pm Ballad’ve

1:50pm – 2:25pm South Rail

2:40pm – 3:15pm Justin Trawick and the Common Good

3:30pm – 4:05pm Junior League Band

4:20 – 5:00pm Vandaveer

5:15pm – 6:00pm Miss Shevaughn & Yuma Wray


Acre 121 Island Stage – Located at Kingman Island Park Entrance

1:00-2:00pm – Gramophonic

2:00-3:00pm – Nathan Robinson of Roof Beams

3:00-4:00pm – Don Kim

4:00-5:00pm – Pet Parade

5:00-6:00pm -Wes Tucker


Gypsy Sallys Island Stage – Located on the Kingman Island Dock

1:00-2:00pm – Sunrise Review

2:00-3:00pm – The Beanstalk Library (acoustic)

3:00-4:00pm – Karen Jonas

4:00-5:00pm – Victoria Vox

5:00-6:00pm - Hollertown


Boogie Babes Children & Family Stage

1:00pm – The Banjo Man

2:00pm – Bridgette & Dawn

2:45pm – Mr. Skip

3:30pm – Uno, Dos, Tres con Andres

4:15pm Marsha Goodman-Wood

4:45pm Nick Bayard


When:   Saturday April 26th, 12:00pm – 8:00pm

Where:  Kingman Island located on the Anacostia River-

575 Oklahoma Avenue NE Washington, DC (entrance at RFK Stadium Lot 6).

Biking and metro are encouraged. A free shuttle will run from Stadium/Armory Metro Station. Free parking is available in RFK Lot 6.

Who:   The Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival presented byWhole Foods Market is a collaboration between Living Classrooms, Councilman Tommy Wells’ Office, REI, Events DC, Boogie Babes, BicycleSPACE, Listen Local First, Kleen Kanteen, programming partners Gypsy Sallys and Acre 121 and media partner WAMU’s Bluegrass Country. All are welcome to attend.

Cost: $10 suggested donations to support Living Classrooms’ environmental education programming for DC youth on Kingman Island.

Tickets can be purchased ahead of time at or at area Whole Foods Market stores.


Funk Parade IndieGoGo Launch from Funk Parade on Vimeo.

As many of you already know, Funk Parade is a one-of-a-kind parade, street fair and music festival planned for DC’s U Street neighborhood on Saturday, May 3rd, 2014.  Funk Parade celebrates DC’s vibrant music and arts, the U Street neighborhood, and the Spirit of Funk that brings us all together.

Today Thursday March 13th we launched out Funk Parade Indiegogo Campaign

Raising $20,000 from the community will help us hold the Funk Parade the city deserves. This money will go to the cost of the parade itself, particularly the police and permits which the city requires, and to the musicians and performers who will make the day amazing.

This isn’t another event to eat corn dogs and watch a band play.  Funk Parade is about collaboration and involvement, about getting up and getting into it together, imagining it and making it what you believe it should be.

What do you get? To reward our Indiegogo participants, we have lots of goodies including great perks from local neighborhood businesses, including:

Special Thanks to Those Who Helped Make This Campaign Happen:

The video is edited by Don Kim with video footage courtesy of Don Kim, Ben Droz and Urban Artistry.  The Funk Parade Theme Song is “How to Start a Band” courtesy of Fort Knox Recordings and Fort Knox Five (featuring Ian Sveononius).  Special thanks to Lettie Gooch, Junction Vintage, Miss Pixie’s, Edge’s Barbershop, Theresa Watts, Kim Jade Fry, and Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham.



funky funkerton

REMEMBER: Join Us Tonight Thursday March 13th for the Funk Parade Kickoff Party

Liv Nightclub 2001 12th St NW

Doors open at 8pm

Tickets –


Come join us to celebrate the launch of our Funk Parade Indiegogo campaign with live performances from The Funk Parade All Stars (members of Elikeh, Lucky Dub, Eme & Heteru) aka Ninja Bunny with tons of special musical guests,  DJ Michael Saretsky (TNT) & DJ Nitekrawler (Moneytown) and performances from the Urban Artistry and the Hung Tao Choy Mei Leadership Institute


Tito’s Vodka will be offering free cocktails to the attendees who purchase our SUPER Supporter Ticket.


Event Page –

Follow Funk Parade on Facebook –

Follow Funk Parade on Twitter – @FunkParade

Share the Funk Parade Promo Video  -

Check out our website (created by BrinkMedia) –

Kickoff Events for The Funk Parade and The Kingman Island Bluegrass and Folk Festival this Week!

funky funkerton
DC Funk Parade Kickoff Party - Thursday March 13th 
Liv Nightclub 2001 12th St NW
Doors open at 8pm
Come join us to celebrate the launch of our Funk Parade Indiegogo campaign with live performances from The Funk Parade All Stars (members of Elikeh, Lucky Dub, Eme & Heteru) aka Ninja Bunny with tons of special musical guests,  DJ Michael Saretsky (TNT) & DJ Nitekrawler (Moneytown) and more!
ALSO special guest performances from the Urban Artistry and the Hung Tao Choy Mei Leadership Institute (think Kung Fu Lions and Big Drums!)
Finally Tito’s Vodka will be offering free cocktails to the attendees who purchase our SUPER Supporter Ticket.
Finally keep an eye out for the launch of our Indiegogo campaign which will go live this week.  With your support we can make this event amazing!
*So awesome the Awesome Foundation just gave us a grant! Go Awesome!
Follow Funk Parade on Facebook -
Follow Funk Parade on Twitter – @FunkParade
Share the Funk Parade Promo Video 
Check out our website (created by BrinkMedia) -
Kingman Island Bluegrass and Folk Festival Kickoff Party - Saturday March 15th
Gypsy Sallys – 3401 K St NW 
This evening filled with amazing local folk and bluegrass music marks six weeks until the largest local music festival in the District of Columbia. The 5th Annual Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival presented by Whole Foods Market is happening on Saturday April 26th on DC’s very own Kingman and Heritage islands. For all information on the festival line up, activities and tickets please visit 
The Festival will be announcing its full line up at the March 15th Show and will be offering first buyer special ticket deals for all show attendees.  
Follow KI Bluegrass Fest on Facebook -
Follow the Fest on Twitter – @KIBluegrassFest

Funk Parade Kickoff Party

funk poster

Listen Local First in conjunction with Funk Parade presents: An Extravaganza in the Spirit of Funk

Come join us at Liv Nightclub Thursday, March 13th to celebrate the final stretch of Funk Parade planning and to kickoff our fundraising efforts!

This celebration will feature *for one night only* The Funk Parade All-Star Band (aka Ninja Bunny), including members of Elikeh, Lucky Dub, Eme & Heteru & special guests!

PLUS DJ Michael Saretsky (TNT) & DJ Nitekrawler (Moneytown) and more!

The Funk Parade is a one of a kind sidewalk fair, parade and evening music festival happening on Saturday May 3rd throughout the U Street Corridor.  In order to put on this unbelievable event we need to raise money to cover the costs of permits, security, and payment for musicians and artists.  This night of celebration also marks the launch of the Funk Parade Indie GoGo Fan Funding Campaign.  Stay tuned for more information, donation opportunities, and great give-aways.


Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 day of event, and $50 supporter. Doors are at 8 pm. Come enjoy an extra funky Thursday night at Liv and help make Funk Parade happen!

Listen Local First Presents Two Millennium Stage Shows


Listen Local First presents two Kennedy Center Millennium Stage shows this month:


Tuesday, February 11th, 6pm: In collaboration with Multiflora Production, we present Hailu Mergia with guests Low Mentality

In the 1970s, Hailu Mergia was a famous African funk musician in Ethiopia performing with the group the Walias Band. In 1981, the group performed in the United States and Mergia, along with a few other bandmates, remained in the country to avoid returning to their homeland’s toxic dictatorship. Today he’s been picked up by the label Awesome Tapes from Africa which has allowed him to continue his solo accordion career with synthetic accompaniment. Mergia will be joined by Low Mentality, which is known for its beat and bass heavy reinterpretation of non-American music.

For more information:

Awesome Tapes from Africa’s blog

For more on Low Mentality, see their Official Website

Check out the Facebook Event Page 


Wednesday, February 12th, 6pm: Listen Local First presents Nappy Riddem

“Since releasing their debut album on Fort Knox Recordings in 2011, NAPPY RIDDEM has been busy touring nationwide and releasing a string of remixes, transforming itself into an uplifting and conscious reggae band that is funky enough to pack the dancefloor. Started by Mustafa Akbar and Rex Riddem, NAPPY RIDDEM is now joined in the studio and on stage by drummer Jon Modell as part of their 6-piece live band.

The Rock Steady EP contains four upbeat reggae tracks that represent NAPPY RIDDEM’s fresh new sound! The EP starts off strong with a track that shows the group is serious about the healing of the nation. “I Wish” is a deep and meaningful track that reaches the soulful depth of Mustafa Akbar’s vocals. The title track, “Rock Steady” oozes positivity with a groovy, rocksteady vibe, and features Rex Riddem on Ukulele and lead vocals. Keeping the dance vibe going is “Rastaman”, rudeboy defiance on top of an irresistible stepping beat results in pure fire! Closing out the EP is “Red Blood”, featuring Brittany Tanner on additional vocals, a emotional ballad for the people, it is sweet and full of soul.

The Nappy Riddem sound has developed into its own brand of “Dancehall Funk” that moves bodies, hearts, and minds. The Rock Steady EP represents a new beginning for this exciting band from Washington, DC. Reggae for the dancefloor, messages for the people, and fresh beats for the heads.”

(Quoted from their official website)

For more information:

Check out the Facebook Event Page here

Nappy Riddem Website 



LLF Partners to bring you The DC Funk Parade May 3, 2014


The LLF team is proud to finally announce our newest partnership and #DCMusic event!!!!

This morning we launched the The Official Funk Parade Website as well as our Twitter (@FunkParade) and Facebook pages. After months of planning and anticipation, Listen Local First, the founding partners, and over 70+ supporting local businesses, civic leaders, and neighborhood organizations are finally spreading the word of the Funk!

The planned event has three parts: a street fair by day, the mighty Funk Parade in the afternoon, and a music festival in the evening.  The events will be rich in music and art, and will honor both the neighborhood and the spirit of funk, “the subatomic particle of love,” which brings people together and makes them feel all right. The date, May 3, is the 211th anniversary of the District’s incorporation.

“Bringing people together in the spirit of music and celebration is part of what makes the U Street neighborhood a crown jewel of the city,” said D.C. Councilmember Jim Graham (D-Ward 1).  “I’m proud to support this unique event.”

Funk Parade is supported by a broad group of leaders, businesses and community groups, from Councilmember Graham, Ben’s Chili Bowl and the Howard Theater to ANC 1B, U Street Music Hall, the Brixton, Bohemian Caverns, Blind Dog Cafe, Twins Jazz, WJLA Channel 7 and dozens more. For a full list of supporters, click here.

Please help us spread the DC Funk Parade word by following us on Twitter and Facebook and sharing on your own social media and with all of your friends!!

Please feel free to contact the team at

And finally, get funky:


Fair Trade Music Event at IOTA Jan. 22


Listen Local First is partnering with Metro Music Source and Fair Trade Music DC to present a networking and roundtable  discussion event at IOTA Club & Cafe on January 22nd beginning at 6 pm. The featured discussion topic will be Fair Trade Music DC, a community initiative aimed at developing local standards for equitable relationships between musicians and venues in the DC metro area.

Come network with other musicians and music industry professionals, and take part in our focus group discussions where you’ll have an opportunity to share your experiences dealing with DMV area music venues on topics ranging from payment to parking. You’ll also be able to take the Fair Trade Music venue survey, which helps us gather the right data so we can all promote and patronize the venues that treat musicians right.

Informal networking starts at 6pm, and we’ll break into groups for facilitated discussion around 7pm.  Afterwards, everyone is invited to continue mingling, or even sign up for the Iota open mic!

To find out more, visit and please take a moment to fill out our 100% anonymous survey.  All it asks is that you select a venue you have played at within the last 6 months and fill in the bubbles that apply to your experience there. You may (and are encouraged to!) fill out the survey for multiple venues you’ve played within the 6 month time frame.

To RSVP, visit the Facebook event page.

Hope to see you there!


About Metro Music Source:

Supporting the DC area’s vibrant music community for over 4 years, the monthly Metro Music Source event series provides opportunities for the local music community to come together, network, and discuss topics of the day in a relaxed atmosphere, encouraging collaboration and knowledge sharing amongst music creators and music professionals.

About Fair Trade Music DC:

Fair Trade Music is a community organizing initiative that advocates for fairness and transparency in the local live music industry, with educational outreach and positive recognition of participating community members.

POST by Listen Local Warrior – Becca Higgins

Our Best of 2013 Picks, Looking Ahead to 2014 and more….

‘Tis the season to highlight some of the bigger artists and album releases  of 2013! Here’s the Listen Local First Best of 2013 round up:




Top DC Local Artists and Albums of 2013:

Here is the Brightest Young Things Post on DC Music in 2013 -

1. GEMS,  Medusa EP

2. Beautiful Swimmers,  Son

3. The Walking Sticks, Send The Night

4. Deathfix, Deathfix

5. Paperhaus, Lo Hi Lo

6. South Rail, South Rail EP

7. The Morrison Brothers, State of the Union

8. ACME, Synths, Beats, & Psychedelia


10. Mission South, Migration Vol. 2

11. Asheru, Sleepless in Soweto

12. Oddisee , The Beauty in All

13. Laura Tsaggaris, Everyman

14. Cherry Tree, The EP

15. Priests, Tape Two

16. The Cowards Choir, Reunion EP

17. Paint Branch,  I Wanna Live

18. Young Summer, Fever Dream EP

19. Wale, The Gifted

20. Vandaveer , Oh Willie Please


Acts to Pay Attention To in 2014: 

The Walking Sticks

 the walking sticks photo 3

These guys burst on to the DC scene this fall.  While the Ernst brothers have been playing around the area for a while but the addition of frontwoman Chelsea Lee as electrified this three piece indie pop powerhouse.  They have played a couple shows over the past couple months but wait for new




Yes they were all over the Vans Warped Tour this summer but I predict with some new tunes to come these three will be making a bigger splash in 2014 than they did in 2013.—in-the-studio/2305165899001


B Side Shuffle


Wonks that jam.  Though it might not be your favorite genre every city needs their go to jammers.  Opening for Everyones Orchestra gave these guys a whole platform to jump off and exposed them to a much larger local music fan base.  They also seem to have taken up the title of go to party band around the city.  Let’s see what happens.

Cherry Tree

Cherry Tree

This is my total shot in the dark pick.  Yet another trio.  These guys are amazing live performances and have a complete throwback rock and roll sound.  I hope that 2014 is the year that other people start to see how awesome and talented these guys are.


ONE MORE: Band I hope records something new in 2014

The Tender Thrill

 Tender Thrill

I love their last album and I hope they put out more music in 2014.


And for your listening pleasure, a Local DC Spotify mix:




Shedding DC Roots: One Last Track

Jessica Louise Dye of Lightfoot followed failed love to NYC only to find herself falling in love with her new musical identity.

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Washington, DC (November 18, 2013) , “Lightfoot is just a stage name I hide behind, because it’s less scary to sing about personal endeavors when you are in character” confesses Jessica Louise Dye, creative force behind one of DC’s many gifted musical acts. However, as the most prolific artists know, peak creativity is often activated by agony.

In the summer of 2012, Dye recorded a few tracks with Lighthouse DC which she couldn’t bear to release due to the painful past they represent. Since then, she has been touring the world and tightening up her sound while simultaneously recovering from the tragic events that led to her despair. Now, over a year later, Mon Petite Chou is the second of two of those “lost tracks” to be made public. Instead of solely marking a time of sorrow in Dye’s life, the release of these lost tracks now celebrates her triumph over the obstacles she faced. Her and her friends Erik Sleight, Ron Storhaug, Adam Orlando, and Rick Irby who helped cultivate these songs are excited and relieved to have finally made it to this point; stream the latest lost track, “Mon Petite Chou” here:


Despite the somber sound, this featured track is about being grateful for good fortune and realizing that one should endeavor to be more forgiving of those who cause us pain.

Unfortunately, it seems all of Jessica Louise Dye’s personal and musical growth will result in the loss of a wildly talented musical group in the District’s local circuit. Lightfoot will be relocating to NYC in preparation for releasing singles off the latest record this winter. Be sure to keep up with her music from afar, as she’s confident this new album will be her best yet.

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POST by Listen Local Warrior – Becca Higgins