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The Dream Book

The Dream Book is a work of music, dance, and video led by Kevin Diehl's Sonic Liberation 8 and featuring the work of Kùlú Mèlé Dance Company, The Prometheus Chamber Orchestra, Moor Mother Goddess, Mayita Angarica with Baba Rumba, and video artists, Hubbard & Son. Sparked by a curiosity of hoodoo gambling magic, this collaborative work lists objects and situations found in dreams with interpretations and lucky numbers for playing Policy, an illegal and now obsolete, "numbers" game for gamblers. The Dream Book is an interdisciplinary performance bringing together diverse performance companies of Philadelphia in a unique evening of music, dance and visual arts.


We spoke with Sonic 8 leader and Dream Book protaganist Kevin Diehl about this project and his process.

PJP: Briefly describe your musical direction?   

Kevin Diehl: My music celebrates the timeless melodic treasures of AfroCuban Lucumi culture. It celebrates the timeless melodies of Ayler, Ornette, Treadgil, AACM, BAG, and all. It celebrates the desire to dance, groove and enjoy. I am currently incorporating new music and chamber elements with these sensibilities. My ensemble, Sonic Liberation 8, just completed a record with one of the greatest composers chamber music in our time, Oliver Lake.

PJP: What and whom are pivotal musical influences on your creative approach? 


Kevin Diehl: Living in NY back in the late 1970s - the late 1980s was pivotal. The loft scene was vibrant. Central park is where I discovered Bata drums. The Tin Palace was a neighborhood bar/club. SoundScapes in mid town for Latin Jazz with an edge. Mingus “Ah-Um’,” Ornette’s “The Shape of Things to Come, Jerry Gonzalez ‘ Ya Yo Me Curé, Meat Manifesto’s electro house funk, Bill Laswell & Kip Harhan’s mashups. Los Van Van, Tata Guines, George Crumb, Morton Feldman. It’s all the same stuff.  


PJP: How do you manage the task of creating and encouraging fresh, new, forward moving musical ideas, while simultaneously exploring, celebrating and documenting the past?    

Kevin Diehl: To me music is timeless. Certain things I listened to coming up are still vibrant today. The music I write is me trying to understand that timeless music. Only so much of it was created. In a way, I want to hear more of it. So I create music that operates in its environment the way that music did.

PJP:  When listening to your music, what advice would you give to audiences to aide with greater understanding and enjoyment? 

Kevin Diehl: Relax. If your not moving, if your not smiling, If your not connecting, there is nothing more we can do for you. A huslter “swami” I once met had a sign at his house in Fairmount: “leave your mind and your shoes at the front door”


PJP: Why Jazz? When you could be doing anything else, why Jazz?


Kevin Diehl: Jazz chose me. When I first heard Bud Powell’s Un Poco Loco - with Max playing poly-tempo latin rhythm, When I heard Philly Joe Jones and realized his was the arranger of the Miles Davis Quintet from what he was doing from the drum kit, Jazz chose me.



September 12th, 2015 at 7pm

Venice Island Performing Arts & Recreation Center
7 Rector St, Philadelphia PA 19127


Sonic Liberation 8 featuring...
▪ Kùlú Mèlé Dance Company
▪ The Prometheus Chamber Orchestra
▪ Moor Mother Goddess
▪ Mayita Angarica with Baba Rumba
▪ Hubbard & Son


For More Info And Tickets Click Here






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If it hadn't been for him, there wouldn't have been none of us. I want to thank Mr. Louis Armstrong for my livelihood.
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Philadelphia Jazz Project is a sponsored project of the Culture Trust | Greater Philadelphia, with funding provided by The Philadelphia Foundation.