Abdu Ali is an American avant-garde electronic musician, writer, cultural worker, and multidisciplinary artist who primarily works in sound, dialogue, text performance, & social practice. Their work is a yielding poetic up rise that often interrogates ideas of identity as well as narrate and promote liberation from oppressive ideologies and systems. Their music is an idiosyncratic blend of punk, jazz, Baltimore club music, and rap that has graced stages across the U.S. and Europe. Through their energetic visceral performances, spiritualizing audiences, they have been anointed as a cosmic, punk, and soulful tempest on stage. Unapologetically black, gay, & queer, Abdu Ali’s work is bold, raw, and most importantly life-affirming.
Ali has performed at MoMa Ps1, The Carnegie Museum of Art, The Baltimore Museum of Art, The Kennedy Center, Red Bull Music Festival, and the DC National Mall. Ali has been highlighted by the NY Times, NPR, The Fader, Les InRocks, and Tracks Arte TV. Ali has been a recipient of The Contemporary: Grit Fund 2; a 2018 Ruby Artist Grant; 2019 Best Artist Award by The LGBTQ Commission of Baltimore City, Baltimore Magazine 2019 Best Artist, was invited to the Black Artists Retreat 2019 hosted by Theaster Gates, and have held residencies at 2018 Red Bull Music Academy Bass Camp & 2018 Pioneer Works. Ali is also the founder of Kahlon, an iconic underground party that radicalized the artistic climate and made space for marginalized musicians in Baltimore. Kahlon ended in 2017 and in 2019 Ali, birthed as they lay, a Baltimore-based social practice art initiative w/ a keen focus on collaboration, digital media + dialogue-based exhibitions.