New York, Philly, and Melbourne
Presented by ACT4Music Curator Ernest Stuart.
Curated by Ernest Stuart, featuring Ben O’Neill, Alexa Barchini and Jackson Fitzgerald, I Hold the Great Rack and Luke Carlos O’Reilly plus special guest Lee Mo.
Ernest Stuart is a Philadelphia-bred trombone player that fell in love with jazz early. He eagerly pursued music throughout his adolescence, sometimes with—and sometimes without—his family’s knowledge. At various points in his jazz education, he surreptitiously signed up for band classes on his own (though he worried his mother could not afford to buy him an instrument), spent his high-school-service-worker wages on trombone lessons, and meted out as much time playing in jazz clubs as he did attending class while he was getting his music degree from Temple University. After a post-college stint in New York, Stuart returned to Philadelphia to continue his recording and performance career, including several years spent playing and touring internationally as part of the band Red Baraat, and performing, and touring, with the likes of John Legend, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Seal, The Legendary Roots Crew, Aretha Franklin to name a few. He also threw time into founding and producing the Center City Jazz Festival. He is currently tours regularly as part of the house bands for international acts, as well as playing and producing his own original music.
Ben O’Neill has been creating music with a diverse range of collaborators for over 20 years. He has toured the world with some of the most famous and acclaimed artists of our era, traveling to some 35 countries with the likes of John Legend, Jill Scott, Common and making appearances with artists as wide ranging as Sting, Bilal, will.i.am, Jason Nelson, Tasha Cobbs, Musiq Soulchild and Christina Aguilera. He was a member of the groundbreaking gospel group, Tye Tribbett and GA, which is widely recognized as having changed the genre. His output includes recordings with his jazz/funk organ trio of 15 years, The Mini Qs, several collaborations with electronic producer RVLVR, and a number of solo albums that blend singer/songwriter, country, rock and jazz influences.
His upcoming releases, Light, Vols. 1 and 2, are collections of exceptionally transparent songs that explore themes of meaning and mortality, fear and faith, while pulling an unusually broad range of musical influences into a distinct vision. His Act 4 Music set is a selection of these tunes, performed solo for the first time. One of the artistic goals behind Light, Vols. 1 and 2 was the creation of material that would be complete in its simplest form, material in which no note or lyric was extraneous. This performance can be viewed as an effort to realize that goal.
Alexa Barchini and Jackson Fitzgerald
Alexa Barchini and Jackson Fitzgerald are a Brooklyn based guitar+voice duo, performing originals alongside covers spanning the jazz, singer-songwriter, and Brazilian realms.
I Hold the Great Rack
“…a fascinatingly free journey that balances an experimental unpredictability with quirky humour quite masterfully” – Francis Tait, Trouble Juice Charting the territory between IDM & Art Pop, I Hold the Great Rack (IHTGR) is a musical performance art duo that hijack popular media and stylistic tropes to shift the way experimental art is consumed. Emily Bennett (Great Rack) is led by narratives not predominantly voiced in music; those both banal and significant, portraying landscapes that bleed into the fictional and subjective. Whilst Reuben Lewis (I Hold the Lion’s Paw) has refined a uniquely eclectic electro- acoustic language that is as much at home in EDM as it is on a hilltop in Malaysia surrounded by dancers and bull-trance shamans. Spanning the length of 2020, IHTGR will debut a series of works exclusively on Instagram Feed. The first chapter inaugurates the series at the epicentre of narcissistic culture with the title, ‘The World Died Today While You Were On Your Phone’. Follow us at @ihtgr for more details. CREDITS: I Hold the Great Rack – instagram.com/ihtgr/ Emily Bennett – voice, samplers, synths, drum machines – emilybennettsound.com Reuben Lewis – trumpet, pedals, synths, drum machines – reubenlewis.com Filmed & Mixed by Reuben Lewis
Luke Carlos O’Reilly plus special guest Lee Mo.
Luke Carlos O’Reilly is an award winning pianist who has always had a great passion for music. He is heavily influenced by Jazz, Soul, R&B, Gospel, Latin Jazz, Classical and many other styles of music.
After a Boston upbringing, Luke moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to attend Esther Boyer School of Music at Temple University on an academic and music scholarship. It was in Philadelphia where he had the opportunity to tour or record with artists such as Seal, Nicholas Payton, Roy Ayers, Dave Valentin, Curtis Fuller, Bobby Watson, Randy Brecker, Billy Paul, Fred Wesley, Steve Turre, Musiq Soulchild, Bilal, K’naan, Wiz Khalifa and many others.
Luke has 2 independently released solo albums; ‘Living In The Now’ (2011) and ‘3 Suites’ (2013). Both albums contain original compositions as well as covers from Stevie Wonder, The Beatles, Cedar Walton, Mulgrew Miller, Janet Jackson, SWV and many other eclectic artists. Recently (2018), Luke was named an Artist In Residence at The Kimmel Center For The Performing Arts in Philadelphia, PA. In addition to his continued touring with his own projects as well as working as a sideman, Luke is currently a teacher at The Kimmel Center of Philadelphia.