NXT LVL PDX is back at Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, bringing another epic event for social justice. In January, NXT LVL brought some of the West Coast’s most exciting musicians for an all night dance party to raise money and bring awareness. We will be bringing that same energy and same mission to TBA 2018.

NXT LVL Presents:

a sonically avant-garde evening

Kelsey Lu
Secret Drum Band
Amenta Abioto
Carlos the Rollerblader (MC)

raising money and awareness for
The Equi Institute
Red Lodge
Periods and Politics (tampon drive)

With gracious support from:
Stumptown Coffee Roasters
Pip’s Original Doughnuts
Singing Sands PDX
Modernist Financial

*If you or your company are interested in sponsoring this event, please email [email protected]

Serpentwithfeet: serpentwithfeet is an avant-garde vocalist and performance artist whose growing body of work is rooted in dueling obsessions with the ephemeral and the everlasting – key components of his artistic journey from a childhood stint as a choirboy in Baltimore through his time at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where he studied vocal performance before relocating to New York City. His forthcoming debut full-length album “soil” is a return to the sensibilities and wide-eyed curiosity of his musical youth before symmetry and sterile soundscapes ruled the roost. With the release of soil, the chameleonic serpentwithfeet (born Josiah Wise) rediscovers and ultimately returns to the unhinged version of himself he was sure he had outgrown. “soil” is about me returning home then realizing that I carry home with me daily.”

Kelsey Lu: Kelsey McJunkins, otherwise known by her stage name, Kelsey Lu, is an American musician and recording artist known for her collaborations with Blood Orange, Lady Gaga, and Wet. She grew up surrounded by art and music and recalls moments when her father would be working on an art piece all the while listening to some of the most legendary of Jazz music, Afro-Cuban salsa. Once her sister picked up the violin, Kelsey began studying classical composition at the age of six years old. Lu was asked to play the cello during a Nappy Roots concert that took place at her college. During the process of collaborating with the label, she met André 3000, along with a slew of other artists. Lu is a musician known for her bare cello and sometimes vocal sound which has a unique flair in the pop tonality that she has created as an artist.

Secret Drum Band: Secret Drum Band is a percussion ensemble based in Portland, Oregon. Driven by four drummers, each song also employs an array of affected vocals, guitar, and synthesizers, often mimicking sounds found in nature. Founder/composer Lisa Schonberg and composer Allan Wilson document habitats and soundscapes in their compositions, with the goal of drawing attention to issues concerning endangered species, habitat loss, and other environmental issues. Secret Drum Band’s live performances are transportive, an opportune meditation on the relationships between humans, ecology and music.

Amenta Abioto: Songwriter, songstress, and actor, Amenta Abioto is on the cutting edge of all that is musical, theatrical, and literary. Her music is boldly mystical and soul-fired, and her raw live performances invoke elements of both theatrical surprise and magic through ancient African diasporic sounds and stories. Weaved into syncopated rhythms and dichotomies of comedic proportions, Amenta surprises and tantalizes audiences with mind bending ideas. She brings to the music scene funky academia while skipping vocally from soul shaking gospel to smooth jazz and then onto hip hop rhythms wrapped in West African beats.

Red Lodge Transition Services is a ‘think outside the box’ minority led non-profit organization serving a vulnerable population that in many ways is viewed as a burden to society. Women returning to community from drug treatment centers, jails and prisons are frequently met with stereotypical attitudes and judgments’ that set them up for a lifetime of poverty, hopelessness and dependency. Red Lodge is more than a transition house, it is a Behavioral Health program focusing on mentoring, peer support, life skills, trauma and substance abuse. The transition center provides supervised housing and case management for up to 6 indigent women at a time, as they return to community from treatment centers, prison and jail. This is a 90 to 120-day program focused on healing, substance abuse prevention, life skills, domestic violence training, job readiness, employment, housing, self-actualization, parenting and sustainability.

There is a great need for culturally competent, welcoming, and affirming health care for the LGBTQI2S Communities. Sacred Vessel Natural Medicine, soon to be The Equi Institute, is here to serve that need for Portland, Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. Sacred Vessel Natural Medicine was founded in 2012 by Dr. Angela Carter, ND (they/them) as their private practice. Being Queer and Trans identified themselves, they built their practice caring for their fellow community members. In 2015, when Oregon Medicaid began covering transgender care, Dr. Carter’s practice was bursting at the seams and they began pursuing a larger space to practice and non-profit status. The clinic moved into Q Center in February of 2016 and slowly began adding providers and services along the way. In 2018, Sacred Vessel is home to three naturopathic doctors, an acupuncturist and a mental health counselor who offer primary care, medically-supported transition care, sexual health and wellness services, acupuncture and mental health for the transgender, non-binary, intersex and queer community. Each one of our providers are not only queer themselves, but are also trained in the philosophy and practical application of the theories of cultural and gender affirming health care, Health at Every Size, Racial Justice, Economic Equality, and Non-Violent Communication, with a focus on community advocacy, education, and positive socio-cultural change.

Gender inclusive period advocates working to elevate trans, non-binary and gender non conforming individuals, brands and orgs in the menstrual movement! All the tampon/menstrual supply donations being donated at TBA2018 will be distributed to marginalized communities within Portland, Oregon.

NXT LVL is a collective that has created a social justice platform to incite change by galvanizing people to action through parties, events, and social connection. Each NXT LVL event is carefully curated to center and amplify WOC/POC/QTPOC/LGBTQIA2S+ voices and causes. NXT LVL involves the communities in which they work, to benefit as integral collaborators in the process. They prioritize creating safe spaces for all those who attend their events, and strive to provide fair compensation for folks who contribute their skills, time, and energy to make these events possible. NXT LVL recognizes and celebrates the opportunity and ability to shine light on and uplift communities, while fostering a supported vision for social activism fundraising.