I've been volunteering with the Museum of African American History for a few months now. I wanted an opportunity to help preserve and share the richness of Black American subcultures in the States with other people, so I sent them my resume, made an appointment and used it as an opportunity to connect and give back.
The Black musical tradition is very close to my heart - for as long as I can remember, Black music has been defined as the medium by which we (re)create ourselves and the truth of our individual and shared experiences. We moan through Negro Spirituals, chant down Heaven through the Gospel tradition, sing ourselves whole through Soul, and configure a post-Great Migration canon through Hip Hop and Rap.
Orwell told us that "in a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." Well, Black music (in part because literacy was not always safe and likely, and because text does not always serve to articulate the heft of experience) has always been a subversive and revolutionary act.
The New England Conservatory of Music's African American Roots Ensemble joined forces with the museum for a performance called "Where African Rhythms and Western Music Meet" and featured a number of works from Nigeria, South Africa, and the United States. I took some photographs and video - take a gander...
...and check out the Museum of African American Museum of History's events calendar so you can RSVP for the next performance!