>Arts, Culture & Fun: Make Music New York
Friday, June 21, 2019
7:00 p.m.–9:30 p.m.
Join us as we celebrate the longest day of the year in partnership with Make Music New York with great live music by Taulant Mehmeti and The Afro Nick on the McCarren Play Center Pool deck.
- Taulant Mehmeti: 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
- The Afro Nick: 8:20 p.m. - 9:20 p.m.
The Afro Nick draws on his experiences as a child growing up on Crete,Greece. His earliest musical memories were of gypsies playing their guitars for coins on the Venetian cobblestone streets. In 2009, he formed the band “Stray Blue” and toured throughout Crete, premiering one of the first Indie-Rock band tours on the island.
Known for his wild, expressive hair—which incidentally serves as his namesake—it symbolizes uninhibited freedom, a tangible representation of childhood rebellion extended into adulthood.
Now based in Brooklyn, he offers audiences the chance to experience his Indie-Rock through stirring lyrics, expressed with breathless urgency—offering broad appeal through a uniquely distinctive sound.
Nick has performed widely at concerts and festivals throughout the United States and also served as a music producer in New York City.
Festivals and venues have included European Music Day, Make Music New York Festival, Herndon Festival VA, Eastern Moat Theater in Crete, Rockwood Music Hall, Nublu, The Bitter End, Mercury Lounge, Lucille’s BB King’s, Sullivan Hall, Piano’s, Arlene’s Grocery
Kosovo born Albanian guitarist Taulant Mehmeti is a natural improviser, drawing upon the rich Balkan rhythms and gypsy music he grew up hearing and playing. Along with his deep interest in jazz and Django Reinhardt, Charlie Parker and Wes Montgomery as major influences, his musical sensibility is equally informed by funk, rock, and world music genres. Taulant's music weaves these bright strands into a shimmering tapestry of his own creation.
As a youngster in war-torn Kosovo, Taulant Mehmeti amazed local audiences with his songwriting talent and musicianship. Under the mentorship of renowned local jazz guitaristArmend Xhaferi, he developed into a leading jazz player in Kosovo and Albania.
Now an active performer on the New York scene, Mehmeti has played, as a leader and a sideman, in venues including Blue Note, B.B.Kings and Iridium just to name a few.
Taulant's performances have taken him to over 20 countries and varied settings, among them: TED Talks and Prishtina Jazz Festival in Kosovo; Bern Jazz Festival in Switzerland, International Gypsy Romanian Festival Bucharest; Tirana Jazz Festival and Shkodra Summer Jazz, Albania; Castellon Jazz Festival in Spain, Reykjavik Jazz Festival in Iceland, Jazz a Carthage in Tunisia, Contours of Contemporary Kosovo Istanbul, Turkey, Jazz Appreciation Month at WBGO in New Jersey; and in New York: Stars of Tomorrow- Hudson River Park, Jazz in the Square and Ideas City Festival - New Museum.
He has performed with artists such as Vic Juris, Armend Xhaferi, Ilir Bajri, Linda Briceño, Baden Goyo, Nesim Maxhuni, and Gabriel Chakarji.
His debut jazz album Pinxhur'n'Pestil with his band Trio of Love, received positive press and garnered airplay, including a New Year's Eve live TV performance on KlanKosova network in Kosovo. Other notable recordings include his performance with Kosovo jazz drummer Nesim Maxhuni’s Hip-Bop Quintet release Syndrome; as well as his appearance on ErnestoLlorens' new album "On My Gypsy Way" featuring legendary gypsy guitarists Bireli Lagrene, Stochelo Rosenberg and Adrien Moingnard with whom he shared tracks.
Taulant Mehmeti recently graduated from The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, holding the distinction for being the first jazz guitarist from Kosovo to study there.
Directions to McCarren Park
Know Before You Go
McCarren Play Center
On Thursday, July 4, 2019, this recreation center will be closed in observance of the Fourth of July holiday.
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