Bev recorded "The Power of Song" with the Brooklyn Women's Chorus in 2003. The chorus was founded in 1997 by Bev with the conviction that every woman can sing. It is still going strong today. The album was co-produced by Bev Grant and Jeff Van Nostrand and the basic tracks recorded by Don Jacobs. In addition to Bev on guitar, Barry Kornhauser plays electric bass; Bruce Markow is on mandolin, mandola and electric guitar; Robin Burdulis on percussion, Barry Bryson on trumpet, Martha Siegel on cello and Jeff Van Nostrand on keyboards.
The Human Condition recorded Kulonyaka in 1986. After a brief hiatus, while Jerry Mitnick (bass) and Gene Hicks (keyboards & fiddle) went to Norway to work as musicians, Bev Grant met up with Chipo Wakatama (from Zimbabwe) and Frank Negrón from Puerto Rico and reconstituted the group with a focus on world music, performing songs from South Africa, Haiti and Latin America, and singing in several different languages. Jerry returned to Brooklyn and joined up with them and the band was joined by Charles Mena (from Nicaragua) on drums. The band played in many different communities, functioning as a bridge between cultures, carrying the message of struggle and ultimately expanding into a 10 piece band with five lead vocalists backed up by drums, percussion, and horns as well as guitar and bass. The band finally folded in 1991. Kulonyaka was recorded independently with money raised by the band from their supporters.
The Human Condition was founded in 1972 by Bev Grant (vocals and guitar) and Jerry Mitnick. It began on Garfield Place, where Gene Hicks (keyboards, fiddle and background vocals), Jerry Mitnick (electric bass and vocals) and Mario Giacalone (guitar and vocals) were living, in Park Slope Brooklyn. The band spent many years playing in support of the anti-war, anti-imperialist, social justice movement, performing songs reflecting a strong feminist and class consciousness provided by the songwriting of Bev Grant as well as other members in the band. The band played numerous benefits for the Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW), toured college campuses in the Northeast, played at demonstrations and performed at the End of the War concert in Central Park. They recorded "The Working People Gonna Rise" in 1975 on the Paredon label and one of their songs, "Inez," written by Bev Grant was included in the recently released, Emmy nominated, "Best of Broadside" CD collection produced by Smithsonian Folkways Recording.
Where Women Rule is a CD single written and produced by Bev Grant as a fundraiser for a women's village in Kenya called Umoja, which was founded ten years ago by Rebecca Lolosoli, an indigenous Samburu woman, after many women in her village were raped by British soldiers stationed nearby. The women were subsequently forced from their homes by their spouses and accused of bringing shame upon them. The village has grown to six villages spread across the region. They are building schools, raising livestock, and selling crafts to support themselves; all things denied to them before they took their independence. Their lives have improved and their children are being raised with a new consciousness. MADRE, the women's human rights organization sponsors trips to Umoja and brings Rebecca Lolosoli to the U.S. to speak on their behalf. Read more about it at www.madre.org.
This cd single is being released by Voices of Women Organizing Project (VOW), an organization of survivors of domestic violence who advocate for system change. I was asked by VOW to write a song for their organization and this is the result. The song was written over a period of two months in consultation with VOW women and uses lines drawn from poetry created by the women of VOW as well as my own additions and music composition. The recording was co-produced by David Roach and myself and I also provide background vocals with Angela Lockhart from the Dissident Daughters. Two members of VOW (Maria Santiago and Tanya McLeod) are singing lead. The money for purchase of the cd will go directly to VOW.