Year of the Rooster!  with the Afro Yaqui Music Collective featuring Min Xiao-Fen and Gizelxanath

Year of the Rooster! with the Afro Yaqui Music Collective featuring Min Xiao-Fen and Gizelxanath

Saturday, January 28

7:30 pm


Come celebrate Chinese New Year as we enter the Year of the Rooster--at Red Rooster. The Afro Yaqui Music Collective will be collaborating with the legendary Pipa virtuoso Min Xiao-Fin, whom the The New York Times has called "a pipa player like no other," and the Village Voice proclaims has "taken ancient Chinese string music into the future." With The Afro Yaqui Music Collective, Min Xiao-Fen will be performing her "From Harlem to Shanghai and back" suite, a tribute to Count Basie trumpter Buck Clayton's performances in China in the 1930s. 

The Afro Yaqui Music Collective will also be performing works by the late, guggenheim award-winning Fred Ho, whose revolutionary Moneky Orchestra combined grooving jazz-funk with Peking Opera styles and wild improvisation. Met Opera soprano Gizelxanath Rodriguez will be singing a fusion between Peking Opera, Indigenous Yaqui music and the jazz-blues tradition that will bring 2017 in swining.


Afro Yaqui Music Collective
Afro Yaqui Music Collective
“Fred Ho’s style is a genre unto itself, a pioneering fusion of free-jazz and traditional Chinese music that manages to combine truculence and delicacy with such natural ease that it sounds positively organic.”

Fred Ho—called the “greatest baritone saxophonist of all time” by The New Yorker—would be celebrating his 61st birthday this August. Ho was a tireless revolutionary who prosletyized on behalf of Chinese Americans, African Americans, workers, women, Indigenous communties, mother nature, and oppressed entites the world over. His music captures the meaning of resistance and true intercultural solidarity.

Recently returned from the Kennedy Center, The Afro Yaqui Music Collective (AYMC) is a multicultural big band which descends from the ensembles of Guggenheim award recipient Fred Ho, whose work was influenced by West African, global Indigenous, and East Asian musics. The Afro Yaqui Music Collective has been acknowledged by the New York Times as “furthering [Ho’s] musical legacy,” and the band has been presented at an eclectic set of venues over the country including through Lincoln Center and Red Rooster in Harlem, the Free Library of Philadelphia, and universities around the Americas from Pittsburgh to Vermont, to Mexico and Cuba.

The AYMC is co-led by Gizelxanath Rodriguez, a Mexican operatic vocalist and cellist of Yaqui indigenous descent who is an internationally performing soprano and activist, and the recipient of a 2014 ACE Award. Gizelxanath co-leads the band with her partner, Ben Barson, the 2018 Johnny Mandel Prize Winner in composition from ASCAP. Barson met Fred Ho and Magdalena Gómez during his undergraduate studies at Hampshire College, and has worked with them ever since. Barson was Ho’s Baritone saxophone protégé who “Ho felt has the heft and sound to represent [Ho’s] assertive approach.” (The New York Times). Barson is also a recent recipient of several compositional awards from ASCAP.

In this spirit of building revolutionary bridges, the Afro Yaqui Music Collective has invited the great Cuban drummer Hugo Cruz from Havana to collaborate with the collective. Cruz's work crosses boldly between contemporary jazz and the Afro-Cuban percussion traditions embedded in son and tumba francesa traditions.

Also joining the collective is Alberto Villalobos, of the popular New York supergroup the Villalobos Brothers, a trio of high-octane Mexican violinists, whose music is inspired by the musical styles from Veracruz, Mexico. In addition, Alberto Villalobos is an accomplished sculptor and artist whose work documents state violence and cultural memory in Mexico.

The band will also feature the lyrical stylings of Nejma Nefertiti-- a multi~media hip hop artist, producer, sound designer, audio engineer, songwriter, and natural perfumer. Nejma Nefertiti utilizes hip hop and technology as tools to empower black, brown, and first nation youth for generations to come.
Venue Information:
Ginny's Supper Club
310 Lenox Ave.
New York, NY, 10027