To celebrate its 20th year, the world music band Funkadesi is embarking on a project to spotlight its two decades of performance, education, and bringing communities together through music.
Rahul Sharma, a founding member of the band, is also an instructor Argosy University, Chicago. Along with bandmate Ernest Dawkins, he helped to create a new work designed to engage up to 1,000 young musicians in an exploration of the rich musical heritage of Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood. Dawkins and Sharma composed a new piece that examines and celebrates Englewood’s dynamic history. They’ll work with groups of musicians at all levels of experience to produce a culminating performance of the piece in 2017.
Funkadesi combines East Indian music with reggae, funk, and a variety of Afro-Caribbean music, creating what the band has dubbed the “Indo-Afro-Caribbean connection.” This connection appeals to a broad cross-section of fans.
In addition, Dr. Sharma was recently awarded a 2017 Joyce Award, presented to five collaborations between artists of color and cultural organizations. Read more about the awards here: http://www.joycefdn.org/news/2017-joyce-awards-announced