Boston, MA (PRWEB) April 4, 2011
The all-women band Zili Misik (http://www.microfundo.com/zilimisik/ ) is based in Boston and only occasionally tours outside New England, but each of its songs takes the listener on a long voyage through a spectrum of musical styles, and even languages. Zili has now teamed up with the Boston-based music crowdfunding site, Microfundo (http://www.microfundo.com), to create an inspiring dance video to help the people of Haiti. Zili's video, when completed, will be screened on Microfundo's YouTube channel, so that just by watching the video viewers will generate ad revenue that will then be donated to the Janbe Haitian youth dance program.
The band's name comes from the significant female Haitian spirit Ezili, and Haiti has the strongest presence in Zili's songs, but the eight-member band's focus is much broader than that.
"We are representative of African roots and of African Diaspora coming together," says band leader Kera Washington. In addition to Haiti, Zili's songs use musical styles from Ghana, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Cape Verde, Brazil, Cuba, Israel, and the US.
Zili formed ten years ago, when Washington found the rest of the band through Craigslist and the Berklee College of Music. Washington had been studying at Wellesley with Haitian ethnomusicology professor Gerdes Fleurant.
"He told me you can't understand music unless you're inside it," recalls Washington, "Unless you play it, unless you experience it that way, and you're walking in rhythm, you know? You hear things differently. You understand life differently."
This feeling for music has given inspiration for Zili's latest music project - "Dance for Haiti" - a music and dance production that is meant as a gift for Haiti.
The group is recording a music and dance video in collaboration with the Haitian youth dance program, Janbe, founded in Boston by Haitian Dance instructor, Jean Appolon.
"I feel a great connection to Haiti," explains Washington, "and also to what Haiti has given this part of the world, which we don't think about often. We think about the poverty in Haiti, we think about problems in Haiti. We don't generally think about the richness of Haiti. We want everyone to feel moved by this music."
The band is inviting anyone to video themselves moving to Zili's music and to submit their own dance video. Zili will add and edit the best clips into one collaborative long piece.
"I like that people will see themselves in this music. I also like that even for people who have had no connection to Haiti, that this can help them feel a connection and it can encourage them to go and find out why, find out about the music."
Headquartered in Boston, Microfundo was founded on a simple premise: to change the way the world funds music. Microfundo has taken crowdfunding and extended it to music, with the goal of turning the hit-driven music industry system on its head and engaging fans to fund artists from around the world. The company's rich social network of artists and fans also unites people by building greater cultural awareness and international economic development.
Brad Powell, Chief Inspiration Officer
Brad Powell has more than 20 years of experience in digital media, business development and marketing. Brad has a deep working knowledge of the international music industry and the digital music space where he has worked with artists, labels, managers, presenters and other music industry players from around the world.
Janbe is a non-profit cultural arts organization based in Boston that focuses on the preservation of culture through the language of dance. The JANBE institute was founded in 2006 as an artistic collaboration between two professional dance artists and educators, Jean Appolon and Nailah Randall-Bellinger.