When I think of Avotcja I think of an old saying, “Doing the Necessary and the Impossible”. The passion and brutal honesty in her writing touches the depths of the hardest heart, while healing the damaged spirits of those gone astray. Her work is defined by an attention to detail and a professionalism that is undefined by her peers. She is truly an unsung shero
• E.W. Wainwright of the African Roots Of Jazz
Avotcja’s poetry sings the blues. She tells us about war and peace, struggle and hardship. Her fiercely roving poetic eye doesn’t overlook one detail of the urban landscape and her generous compassion embraces them all. Oakland could choose no finer poet laureate.
• Pireeni Sundarlingham
Avotcja is one tough, no-nonsense poet, deejay, teacher, jazz and world music aficionado. Her homegrown roots stretch from funk to rhythms and blues and jazz in a blazing trail of tongue-lashing poetry accompanied by some of the hottest Bay Area musicians playing.
• By Genny Lim
Avotcja is a unique voice among our Poets, Musicians, Playwrights and other creative folk today. She combines a fierce, persistent and consistent passion for justice with a beauty of words, sounds and image that can take your breath away. To put it simply, Avotcja is a national and international treasure.
• Elizabeth (Betita) Martinez, activist, author, educator
You can hear the music in Avotcja’s poetry which always flows with truth, sincerity, energy and purpose.
• devorah major San Francisco Poet Laureate 2002 – 2006
AVOTCJA is a sound junkie
A weaver of magical cloth
A gatherer of poetic wisdom
& musical medicine
Somebody not to be missed
• (Rafaela Ocasio 2000)
“Avotcja finds music everywhere through a soundscape made up of everyday sounds, spoken word & music. She transforms the ordinary into the universal.”
• AFRO SOLO: San Francisco 1999
about AVOTCJA & MODÚPUE’s CD “Live @ Yoshi’s
An outright tour de force. Poet, musician, and D.J., Avotcja is on intimate terms with the blues, grounded in their power, unafraid to speak the pain, the pride, the truth. She calls out the names of Oakland blues musicians like she’s invoking the saints. Her words can make you laugh, cry, pray, get up and dance or vow to make your life a better thing. Avotcja and this extraordinary group of musicians that includes Jon Jang on piano and Francis Wong on saxophones and flute, have created a new international music that is indeed beyond category. Gratitude, Live @ Yoshi’s is a multi-dimensional listening experience to be enjoyed again and again.
• Elaine Cohen Poet & Author Of Biography of Red Calendar
“In one word… FANTASTIC!”
• Lady Bianca-Award winning Oakland Blues Diva
“Her “Oaktown Blue” ranks with the works written by the best Blues writers, Bessie Smith, Langston Hughs & Sterling Brown included. Jon Jang has some fabulous “chops”! He can play in styles, Chinese as well as Blacks’, without ever being a tourist. His “You’ll Never Walk Alone” would please Roy Hamilton.”
• Ishmael Reed-legendary award winning Author
• (excerpt from liner notes of Avotcja & Modupue “Live @ Yoshi’s”)
“Infused with her generous spirit & talented tongue, Avotcja’s Poetry & Music will carry you over. Catch a ride, as her wide wings swoop & sail. She wails!”
• Leslie Simon Director Women’s Studies & Project Survive City College of San Francisco
“This music mirrors the cultural crossroads of the Caribbean, a region that has absorbed the cultures of the people that have passed through there into a sensual multifaceted polyrhythmic stew. Avotcja’s poetic sensibility brings out the creative powers in these extraordinary musicians and pushes them in new and exciting directions, led on by the words images and not tethered to the confines of a traditional “song” format.”
• Gregorio “Greg” Landau-two time Grammy nominated Producer (excerpt from liner notes of Avotcja • & Modupue “Live @ Yoshi’s”)
“Rapid fire words of truth woven skillfully through a musical tapestry of sometimes “Gut Bucket Blues”, sometimes Jazz at the edge. All the players on this recording are’ in the pocket”, and in sync with each other. No Loops, no Tools, no Auto Tuning — just pure unadulterated, u in your face, Music and Words to grow by!”
• Linda Tillery-Founder & Director of the Award winning Cultural Heritage Choir (excerpt from liner • notes of Avotcja & Modupue “Live @ Yoshi’s”)
On October 12th 2014
Avotcja received a Lifetime Achievement Award San Francisco Filipino American Jazz Festival
On May 10th 2014
the 12th Annual Berkeley Poetry Festival
with its Lifetime Achievement Award
for the truly valuable creative and community work that she has accomplished.
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Berkeley City Council recognize and proclaimed
May 10th 2014 as Avotcja Jiltonilro Day
see the link to the specific proclamation below… http://www.ci.berkeley.ca.us/Clerk/City_Council/2014/05_May/Documents/2014-05-06_Item_17_Proclamation_in_Honor.aspx