Music for the Movement to benefit organizations fighting police brutality and mass incarceration | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Music for the Movement to benefit organizations fighting police brutality and mass incarceration

click to enlarge Music for the Movement performer Byron Nash of the Byron Nash Trio - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
Music for the Movement performer Byron Nash of the Byron Nash Trio
Art has long been a part of the fight for change. From poets leading protests, to protest songs, artists have added their voices to those of activists who are working for justice. With this history in mind, University of Pittsburgh student Eli Alfieri has organized the Music for the Movement festival, featuring some big-name Pittsburgh artists.

“Simply put, ‘Movement’ in ‘Music for the Movement’ is referring to dismantling racism’s existence in our society. The platform we created is specifically protesting mass incarceration and police brutality,” says Alfieri.

Alfieri adds that, while the concert itself is free, the event will serve as a donation-based fundraiser for three local nonprofit organizations focused on these issues: 1HoodMedia, Jailbreak PGH, and Bukit Bail Fund.


Music for the Movement will take place on Sun., Dec. 12 from 1-10 p.m at the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Featured musicians include Wild Blue Yonder, Center of Life Quintet, Roger Romero, Ether, Aleighsha, Cameron/Eli/Dan, Shamar Hampton, Special K, Paul Thompson and Yoko Suzuki, LMAS Shoota Shak, Zende, and the Byron Nash Trio.

On top of live music, there will also be speakers from 1Hood, Jailbreak, and Bukit Bail Fund, as well as the Black Action Society at Pitt.

Alfieri says he was inspired by a professor who talked about "using music as a function beyond just something for our ears to enjoy and harnessing it as a vessel to create changes we want to see in the world."
click to enlarge Music for the Movement flyer - PHOTO: COURTESY OF ELI ALFIERI
Photo: Courtesy of Eli Alfieri
Music for the Movement flyer
Alfieri is organizing this festival as a part of his final project for a class called Jazz and Protest. Over the summer and through the fall, he organized free outdoor concerts in Oakland. Alfieri says he used his network of musicians to find performers for this festival.

“When reaching out to artists and organizations I knew they would rightfully be skeptical about a white male college student organizing a protest concert against racial injustice. I knew that my good intentions alone would not be enough to pull this off the right way,” he says. “So when I was getting people on board I made it clear that I only wanted to use my position and power as a white male to give my space to Black leaders to use, and that I alone could not organize this event.”


Alfieri says he is most excited to work with 1HoodMedia. After following the organization since he was in high school, he says it is “one of the honors of my life as well as soul nourishment” to work with them.

Music for the Movement. 1-10 p.m. Sun., Dec. 12. Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. 650 Schenley Drive., Oakland. Free. All ages. instagram.com/musicforthemovementpgh

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