African-American Musical Traditions: Melanie DeMore

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African-American Musical Traditions: Melanie DeMore

from 22.50

Saturday February 2, 2019 9:30 am- 1 pm

Fairview Elementary: 23515 Maud Ave, Hayward

Local treasure Melanie DeMore is a musical force, empowering singers of all ages to use music to promote social justice. She will introduce us to musical practices and songs from the Georgia sea islands along with other music from the African-American tradition, and inspire us with the power of music to build community.

Learn more about Melanie’s work

Melanie’s original song “Lead with Love”

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Clinician Bio:

Singer-songwriter Melanie DeMore has a remarkable voice, weaving the fibers of African American folk music with soulful ballads, spirituals and her own original music. DeMore beautifully brings her audience together through her music and commentary. She has toured extensively, singing at festivals, universities, in coffee houses and concert halls. Her recordings Share My Song and Come Follow Me are both heartfelt collections of her music.

In addition to her solo work, DeMore facilitates vocal workshops for professional and community-based choral groups and has taught her program called “Sound Awareness” in schools, prisons, and youth organizations in the US, Canada, Cuba and New Zealand.

DeMore was a California Artist in Residence with the Oakland Youth Chorus for 10 years and has received an award from the Music Educators National Conference for her work with young singers and artists. She is on the music faculty at St. Paul’s School in Oakland, CA where she teaches a cappella singing. DeMore is also a founding member of the Grammy nominated, critically-acclaimed vocal ensemble ‘Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir’, a group that tours extensively in the US and abroad.

DeMore traces her interest in music to her parents who started one of the first Black theater groups in Alaska in the early 60’s. DeMore majored in music at Incarnate Word University in San Antonio, Texas, and later worked as a studio musician, was a member of a melodrama company, sang in an all women’s black a cappella group Scintilla, sang for commercials and wrote music for the theater.

DeMore describes her music as “in the African-American folk tradition of Odetta,” to whom she has often been compared, noting, “I have a very, very, very low voice.” She has shared the stage with numerous artists including Buffy Saint Marie, John Prine, Josh White, Jr., Laura Nyro, Sweet Honey in the Rock and Pete Seeger.