Thank you to everyone who made Bridging the Blues a wonderful and exciting event. Our inaugural Arhoolie Awards and benefit concert with Taj Mahal and Fantastic Negrito was full of memorable and meaningful moments.
The Arhoolie Awards
The Arhoolie Award recognizes exceptional musicians, teachers, community organizations, documentarians, and individuals working creatively to help keep tradition-based styles of music alive and moving forward. Meet the recipients of the first annual Arhoolie Awards:
The Oakland Public Conservatory of Music
The Oakland Public Conservatory of Music (OPC) serves inner city youth by providing top quality music education that is minimal or non-existent in the public school system. Its mission is to “open the world of music to all through access to affordable quality instruction in a nurturing environment. We value rigor, innovation and scholarship in our quest to preserve the musical traditions of Oakland.”
Lucina Rodriguez and Fabiola Trujillo
Lucina Rodriguez and Fabiola Trujillo are longtime teachers and performers of traditional Mexican music and dance. As a singing dueto, they have been part of the Mexican roots band Los Cenzontles for over 20 years. In addition to touring, Trujillo and Rodriguez manage the after-school program, teach dance classes, and organize events at Los Cenzontles Cultural Arts Academy. In both capacities they share the musical and cultural traditions of Mexico with youth, passing down invaluable knowledge and heritage.
Lee Hildebrand is a writer, editor, drummer, producer, and journalist who has devoted his long career to African-American musical traditions. He has written several books including Stars of Soul and Rhythm & Blues, Bay Area Blues, and Colors and Chords: The Art of Johnny Otis. His journalism has appeared in Living Blues, the San Francisco Chronicle, Rolling Stone, and many other publications. A prominent journalist and music critic for numerous outlets, Hildebrand was also a longtime editor at the East Bay Express.
KPOO 89.5 FM is an all-volunteer community radio station, broadcasting 24/7 from San Francisco, specializing in blues, jazz, gospel, Latin, hip hop, and reggae. Founded in 1971 by Joe Rudolph, it was the first black-owned noncommercial radio station west of the Mississippi River. It was the first station on the West Coast to host a complete hip hop show.