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A Diaspora Journey: Conversation with Elena Pinderhughes & Thomas Sage Pedersen
A five-part musical suite, A Diaspora Journey, explores the myriad musical traditions – spanning time and continents – to reflect the many ways that Black people and cultures have expressed and told their stories. The suite blends and integrates musical traditions from throughout the African Diaspora; highlighting similarities in rhythms, melody, and harmony that are found in different regions and that continue to evolve and change with each coming generation. The concert held on Monday, February 20th is the world-premiere of this suite, which was commissioned by Kuumbwa Jazz. Composer and flutist Elena Pinderhughes has composed the suite with musical collaborator and guitarist Lionel Loueke. The suite will highlight how African diasporic musical traditions are a vital source of unity, comfort, resiliency, and strength for Black people all over the world.
Hailing from California’s San Francisco Bay Area, Pinderhughes is an accomplished flutist, vocalist, and composer. She began singing and playing the flute at age seven, and by age nine she was performing and recording with local bands, and had recorded her first album, Catch 22. Cited as “the most exciting jazz flautist to have emerged in years” by The Guardian, Pinderhughes is currently performing with a range of musicians, as well as with her own group, and touring internationally with Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Common, and Herbie Hancock. She is currently working on her debut album, which will showcase her singularly unique vocal and flute-playing style and bring her musicality, harmony, rhythm, and culture together to create a specifically designed sound all her own.
Thomas Sage Pedersen founded the Speak for Change podcast with the mission of creating positive and lasting social change in our local and global communities. From a studio at the Tannery Arts Center in Santa Cruz, Pedersen has hosted over 100 podcast episodes.
Sponsored by SCC Black Health Matters Initiative