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Second Cup Cafe: Toshi Reagon

Toshi Reagon plays in our Second Cup Cafe. Toshi, who got her name from her godmother Toshi Seeger, plays innovative rock crossed with soul-influenced, blues-tinged folk. The New Yorker said "...her live shows shower retro funk, urban blues, and folk on the audience with evangelical fervor. To hear her is to believe." (1/21/02) She's here with her fourth album, simply called "Toshi."

Born in Atlanta and raised in Washington DC, Reagon cites her musical abilities from her family, particularly her mother, Bernice Johnson Reagon. Both parents belonged to SNCC's (Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee) The Freedom Singers, a folk group that sprung from the Civil Rights movement and toured the country to teach people about civil rights through song. Her rich musical heritage led her to become saturated in many traditional styles of music, feeding her desire to explore a range of music that was not as accessible, from blues to Kiss.

Reagon's previous albums are: her 1994 self-released debut 'The rejected Stone,' Smithsonian Folkways 1997's Kindness, which brought Toshi to the attention of many critics, converting them into longtime fans, and the acclaimed 1999 release 'The Righteous Ones' on Razor & Tie.

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