The Reminders set stage at Doudna


Rob Le Cates

Aja Black, vocalist and emcee for The Reminders sings the final song in the performance “Coming Home” in the Dvorak Concert Hall Thursday.

Ryan Meyer, Multimedia Reporter

The Reminders took the stage in the Dvorak Concert Hall on Thursday night to perform positive, genreless music that pulls from hip-hop and music from around the world.  

The group consists of married emcees Aja Black and Antoine “Big Samir” Zamundu, and the performance happened to fall on the day after their seventeenth anniversary.  

There was audience call and response from the first song, “Calling All Cars,” and it continued into “Bam Bam,” where the audience was encouraged to stand up and dance. 

They slowed it down with a new song that had yet to be released midway through the set and closed with “Coming Home,” the last words of which were pulled from the Beatles’ “Blackbird.” 

In between songs, Black traced her love of music back to watching footage of Woodstock as a kid, proving it by giving a vocal performance of “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane.  

Before the show, Black said that when performing at colleges, she wants students to leave their shows searching for ways they can be creative themselves.  

“I really hope that it gets them to engage with creative arts more, like not just watch somebody on the stage, but feel compelled to somehow look in their life for something that they can do creatively,” Black said. “It doesn’t have to be what we’re doing, but just something.”  

Zamundu said he wants students to cherish the time that they have amongst their peers and the opportunities that their different skill sets present.  

“I want them to enjoy the time that they’re in and the access that they have, not just their professors, but also their peers,” Zamundu said. “Because that’s the time where you get to meet incredible musicians, and you get to meet other great people who are great at what they’re doing.” 

Sean Haynes, a junior music education major, said he enjoyed the show because he got to see Black artists perform.  

“I think the most enjoyable experience about it was someone that looks like me, getting to listen to music that I enjoy, so it felt very personable,” Haynes said. “Because in the way that they spoke about being able to perform for people that look like them or people getting to see people that look like them. It was like that for me because certainly there is not a lot of Black people in the music department, there’s some sprinkles here and there, and it’s enough to, there’s sort of a community of people of color, but it’s not putting on such a grand performance.” 

Haynes also said they enjoyed the concert because of the engagement the Reminders had with their audience, which not only included directed dance routines but also friendly jokes and banter.  

“I think that’s something that makes concerts more enjoyable than typical classical music concerts, because it’s like okay, you sit there for an hour, and then you clap and leave,” Haynes said. “And then like with this, you’re getting up, you’re dancing, you’re jiving, vibing, having a great time the whole time…It’s just a definitely different atmosphere.”


Ryan Meyer can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].