KC PBS announces new program

Posted by Bob Evans

New Special Explores the Meaning of ‘American Music’

AMERI’KANA, Produced by Local Band Making Movies,

Will Premiere on Kansas City PBS in July

Kansas City PBS has announced AMERI’KANA: An

American Music Conversation, a new one-hour special presented by local rock band Making Movies. The special brings audiences into the rich history of American music with personal interviews, soulful performances and insightful conversations across generations and genres in Memphis, Tennessee. AMERI’KANA will premiere on July 1 at 7 p.m. on Channel 19.1

AMERI’KANA is a fascinating exploration of what ‘American Music’ actually means, who has told its story, and whose story it is to tell,” said Kliff Kuehl, President & CEO of Kansas City PBS. “We cannot wait for audiences to experience this documentary that the members of Making Movies have wonderfully crafted.”

AMERI’KANA reconceptualizes what American music really means,” said Enrique Chi, member of Kansas City-based psych-rock band Making Movies and producer of the special. “For far too long, immigrant, Black, Latinx, indigenous artists have been left out of the equation and our history — AMERI’KANA places them at the center.”

The documentary examines how music lit the fuse of the civil rights movement in Memphis, putting sound at the center of the struggle. Artists’ stories and history come to the forefront, such as the journey of Deborah Barnes from singing in gospel choirs at rallies led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to performing alongside Ray Charles.

Showcasing and celebrating the diversity within our collective history, AMERI’KANA examines how artists of different backgrounds, ethnicities, languages and cultures — and their own unique sounds — have shaped American music, and what it means to be an American musician past and present.

AMERI’KANA was created, produced and hosted by Making Movies, composed of Enrique Chi (vocals, guitar) and Diego Chi (bass), along with Juan-Carlos Chaurand (percussion, keys) from Mexico and Duncan Burnett (drums).

The special will feature performances and appearances by legendary musicians Los

Lobos, Flor De Toloache, Terrance and Marcella Simien, Cedric Burnside, The Sensational Barnes Brothers & Deborah Barnes, Martha Gonzalez, Boo Mitchell and the Rev. Charles Hodges.

Join Kansas City PBS as we explore the evolution of American music highlighting the past and present while elevating the next generation of songwriters.

For more information, visit kcpbs.com/amerikana.

Kansas City PBS is a non-profit multimedia organization located in midtown Kansas City. Founded in 1961, KC PBS operates four television channels, as well as working with sister brands Flatland, its digital news source, and 90.9 The Bridge, an NPR music discovery public radio station.