Octavia of Earth is a multi-part documusical inspired by the life of science fiction luminary Octavia E. Butler. From 2016 to 2020, Uncaged Library Arts created Volume 1, made up of 9 original songs and found footage short films. Now, we're working on BRAND NEW MUSIC for Volume 2 in collaboration with Bay Area legends Kofy Brown, Katie Cash, Shelley Doty, and Vicki Randle, collectively known as Skip the Needle . We've got the know-how, the creative juice, and the dream team to make the music, and we need your help to bring that music to the people! Donors at every level through December 31, 2021 will be entered into a drawing to win one of three gift cards to the phenomenal Oakland-based, black-owned bookstore Sistah SciFi .
More info about who we are & what we're doing:
Uncaged Library Arts lifts up stories that sustain the hearts and minds of social change workers in Oakland, the Bay Area, and beyond. In particular, we produce collaborative music, theater, film, and data projects that highlight the struggles and victories of LGBTQ people, people living with HIV, and people of color in our ongoing fights for dignity, existence, and liberation. Since 2016, our flagship project has been Octavia of Earth, our original documusical inspired by the life of Afrofuturist luminary Octavia E. Butler. The project has grown organically through contributions from twenty Bay Area activist-artists and artist-educators of color, a majority BIPOC women and trans people, and primarily queer people overall. Our public performances have nurtured gentle cultural space for feminist BIPOC community and our allies, gathering approximately 200 community members with four workshop performances in 2018, approximately 75 at our 2019 studio album release at the African American Museum and Library of Oakland, and over 400 viewers during our 2020-2021 virtual screening series. We have received overwhelmingly enthusiastic responses from community members who have participated in these events, which provide a unique opportunity to get to know Butler not as an icon or oracle, but as a fully human elder. In a moment when her work has reached a breadth of audiences she never achieved during her lifetime, our grounded, researched approach to Butler’s life and work offers depth of understanding, raising the consciousness of her most ardent fans and elevating a discourse of building a future together.
Skip the Needle : Born from group of friends jamming: all veterans of multiple bands, tours, recording. Shelley Doty (Shelley Doty X-tet, Jambay) guitar, Kofy Brown (Kofy Brown Band, Sistas in the Pit) drums, Katie Cash (Katie Cash, Dolorata, Year of the Fist) guitar and Vicki Randle (the Tonight Show, Mavis Staples) bass. The band is the collective effort of four Bay area bandleaders, each lead singer, multi-instrumentalist, performer and songwriter. Lead singing duties rotate among the members while the others add background vocals. The songs are collectively written to showcase each member’s unique contributions, bringing together rock, funk, soul and fusion in an amalgam that rocks hard and is also musically diverse and complex; carries a strong, socially conscious message but wants everybody to party while hearing it. If Jimi Hendrix, Chrissie Hynde and Chaka Kahn cloned a baby, this band would be the result. Skip the Needle is reckless, eclectic, fearless and fun, dedicated to love and like nothing you've ever heard before. Skip the Needle Rocks the Love.
More information about our fiscal sponsor, Independent Arts and Media: IAM is a San Francisco-based fiscal sponsor with a mission to support independent, non-commercial art and media projects and producers for the purpose of building community and civic participation, and facilitating cultural engagement and free expression. IAM currently supports over 60 affiliates dedicated to non-commercial work in media and the arts, including publishing, theater, dance, music, visual art, film and video, journalism, history, and public-events production.