06 / 09 / 14
Procreativity 101: How to Make Art Babies


Homeroom 101 co-founder Fred Sasaki comes on The Morning AMp to talk about his upcoming lecture, Procreativity 101, where he discusses how to be an artist and a parent. The segment includes Lise Haller Baggesen and Alberto Aguilar who will take part part in the lecture.

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6homeroom 101, art, parenting, vocalo, morning amp, hungry brain, nonprofit, themorningamp,

05 / 29 / 14
#Surrealism & #War: How Art is used to Help War Veterans Cope with their Experiences


The National Veterans Art Museum current exhibition explores the relationship between Surrealism and the experience of war. The AMp hosts Brian Babylon and Molly Adams spoke with curator and veteran Aaron Hughes about the artists featured in the show and how the Surrealist tradition can help veterans express what they have witness.

Photo Credit: Aaron Hughes “21 Days to Baghdad/Chicago: Day 21-Chicago Skyline” from Mileh Tharthar, Iraq, graphite on vellum, 2009

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6talk radio, real life radio, surrealism, war, national veterans art museum, aaron hughes, baghdad, iraq, kabul, afghanistan, art, paintings, npr, vocalo, wbez, real talk, themorningamp,

05 / 09 / 14
A Real Night at the Museum at Chicago's Art Institute


Every storied Chicago institution has to get their young and hip on to look cool and to gain members. Art Institute Special Events Director Alicia Rose and Matt Woodburn of Chop Shop and 1st Ward Events joined us to show how the big museum is doing it.

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6chicago, art institute, art, night at the museum, chop shop, chicago events, special events, themorningamp,

04 / 23 / 14
Renaissance Woman Esther Armah Joins the Morning AMp to Talk Saviour? and More


We were joined by the fabulous Esther Armah, journalist, talk show host, and playwright to talk about her most recent work ‘Saviour?’, a play about race, privilege, and entitlement. It is showing at the Eta Creative Art Foundation right now. We also talked about representation of women of color in the media.

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6esther armah, saviour?, savior, eta creative art foundation, eta, art, theatre, plays, social justice, white priviledge, race, race issues, themorningamp,

01 / 10 / 14
Urban Artistry: Haleema talks to Featured Photographer Xavier Nuez


World renowned photographer Xavier Nuez’s series Alleys & Ruins captures the underbellies of cities in literal new light, as he shines multicolored hues on long exposures of underpasses and ripped fences to give beauty to the scenes we overlook. Vocalo contributor Haleema Shah spoke to him about his work last year and you can catch Nuez at his open studio in Pilsen tonight. If you are interested in attending the event, please visit the 2nd Fridays event website!

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6xavier nuez, photography, npr, vocalo, art, 2nd friday, fridays, tgif, chicago public radio, chicago public media, wbez, nonprofit, elmhurst college, art exhibit, cities, gang, underbellies,

10 / 24 / 13
Is Kanye West an Artist or One Who Appropriates Culture?


"Maybe he’s trying to do to the confederate flag what we did with the ‘n-word’ - take the power away from it. I’m just throwing that out there." - Brian Babylon

Kanye West is nothing if not sensational, right down to his tour merchandise. T-shirts sold on the Yeezus tour include depictions of a skull in the Native American style of art as well as the confederate flag. On the topic of cultural appropriation, one Native American commentor on Complex Magazine’s website had this to say;
“As a Native American, seeing a skeleton with a headdress on is just plain disrespectful and it reinforces the idea that Natives are a thing of the past. F*** that. We’re still here and don’t need this from someone who claims to understand the struggle of oppression.”

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6kanye, west, kanye west, hip hop, yeezus, confederate flags, confederate, native american, cultural appropriation, art, april scissors, brian babylon, molly adams,

10 / 17 / 13
Angelo Vermeulen: The Philosophy Behind the Future of Space Exploration


I keep my life simple - physically. Most importantly I connect with people in different cultures all the time. […] This constant exposure to new people, mix of older and younger people, and constant exposure different perception on things, keeps things constantly in perspective. How European I am, and how I have a specific way of looking at things.”

Angelo Vermeulen on what keeps him focused in his space science journeys

Earlier this year six scientists spent four months on Mauna Loa in Hawaii pretending like they were living on the surface of Mars. The leader of the team is our guest, Angelo Vermeulen, a Belgian artist/biologist/philosopher/amazing person. Angelo joined the AMp’s Molly Adams and guest co-host Ernest Wilkins as he talked about the philosophy behind the future of space exploration and why he believes it is humanity’s destiny to go way, way up there. We also learned about the experiments done in Hawaii and why psyche of astronauts is just as important to maintain as the components of the spaceship.

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6space, hawaii, exploration, mars, nasa, europe, belgium, european, biology, science, art, philosophy, talk, cool, smart, chicago public radio, chicago public media, wbez, vocalo, npr, public broadcast, public radio, peace prize thursday, spaceships,

10 / 11 / 13
What's In My Headphones? : Foreign Exchange with a Side of a Critic for a Minute


It’s Critic for a Minute Friday, and our Senior Hip Hop Correspondent, Gabriel Mendoza, joined the AMp hosts Molly Adams and guest co-host Ernest Wilkins as he gave a robust review on the latest from Foreign Exchange’s 4th studio album. While this album maybe be placed in the hip hop genre, Gabe thinks that it is more of an uplifting and vibrant piece of music that just so happens to include hip hop elements and artists. In addition to his critique, he also had a critic for a minute he wanted to share - and he had his rant pants on and ready to go.

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6hip hop, foreign exchange, critic for a minute, critique, robust, mature, art, cool, talk, talk radio, chicago public radio, chicago public media, wbez, vocalo, npr, morning amp, morning show, what's in my headphones, studio album, mc, lp,

09 / 24 / 13
Vocalo On WBEZ Ep 83 - Syria talk, Stop Telling Women To Smile, DJ Chicken George

In this episode: An American military strike against the Assad regime in Syria seemed imminent, and the news was filled with analysts and “experts” but not many Syrian-Americans, the people who will be affected in a couple ways by military action. Now, as things seem to have deescalated, the AMp hosts Brian Babylon and Molly Adams checked in with Amr Kawji, who has been advocating for military intervention, and Ramah Kudaimi, who would like to see a non-violent strategy. Both agreed that something must be done to stop the violence.

Stop Telling Women to Smile is a public art series that addresses gender based street harassment. The work consists of drawn portraits of women who have told their stories of harassment, and wheat pasting those portraits as posters with captions that speak directly to offenders on outdoor walls. The creator of the series, Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, joined Music Vox host Jesse Menendez to discuss the project, gender dynamics and more.

We close the show with a DJ set from Vocalo’s DJ Collective member - Chicken George. Tune in!

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6Vocalo, WBEZ, public radio, Syria, military, war, diplomacy, peace, syrian-american, street art, art, sexism, street harassment, harassment, Chicago, gender, women, feminism, DJ, chicken george,

09 / 18 / 13
Reclaimed Soul: Shacks, Poetry, And Soul
47 plays


In this installment of Reclaimed Soul, host Ayana Contreras shares music from The Creations, Esquires, and much more. Plus, we sample poetry from Sonia Sanchez, and hear about an art installation on Chicago’s South Side that uses reclaimed materials to build shacks. Those shacks become centers for art presentations.

To stream fresh, complete episodes live, visit vocalo.org from 8pm til 10pm on Thursday Nights (Central Standard Time). Press play.

for more on the program, visit vocaloreclaimedsoul.tumblr.com/

Source: SoundCloud / vocalo

6vocalo, reclaimed soul, music, soul, soul music, art, architecture,

09 / 10 / 13
Shacks And Shanties: a temporary art project


The “Shacks & Shanties” project is a South Side Chicago installation initiative organized by Faheem Majeed. Shacks were constructed as platforms for artistic performances and installations. I attended one such installation/performance, titled “Ghana Must Go” after the infamous plaid patterned tote bags that are so prevalent in West Africa. I talked to Faheem Wajeed as well as Abbéy Odunlami, the artist behind “Ghana Must Go”. We talked about community engagement, fashion, and appropriation.

This piece was produced for “Reclaimed Soul” (hosted by Ayana Contreras). Reclaimed Soul airs Thursdays from 8-10pm on http://vocalo.org, and over the airwaves  on 89.5fm (NWindy) and 90.7fm (CHI).

(via vocaloreclaimedsoul)

Source: ayanacontreras / ayana.contreras

6art, culture, africa, nyfw2013, Ghana Must Go, reclaimed soul, Faheem Majeed,

08 / 07 / 13

Music & Stories…LIVE! is back. Join Luis and Shantell as they host an evening of music and storytelling at the Chicago Urban Art Society. 

This month’s theme is Roommate Horror Stories and features stories from Nico Lang, Erin Diamond and You!

Music by “Reclaimed Soul” Host Ayana Contreras. 

Chicago Urban Arts Society
600 W. Cermak
Chicago, IL 60616
Doors open at 6:30pm, 7:00pm show time.
All ages (parental discretion is advised) 
21+ to drink (cash bar)

See you there!

6Vocalo, music and stories, public radio, storytelling, event, chicago, art, community, Chicago Urban Art Society,

07 / 03 / 13
Everyone Is A Teacher: A Conversation with Japanther


The last time the NY art punk duo Japanther were in town, they rocked so hard, people’s teeth caps fell out! Needless to say, the group is known to throw a hell of a show delivering their noise rock sound inspired by Surrealist and Dada painters, 20th century avant-garde music, and the like. Ian Vanek of Japanther spoke with Jesse Menendez on The MusicVox about the “art” aspect of the band, overcoming hardships and uplifting people through music, the failing education system, and of course their latest album “Eat Like Lisa, Act Like Bart.”

The MusicVox airs weekdays 4-6 PM on 90.7 FM (CHI) / 89.5 (NWI) /www.vocalo.org

Source: SoundCloud / Vocalo's Music Vox

6Japanther, art, punk, noise, rock, uplifting, education, mentorship, Chicago, NY, Vocalo, public radio,