My name is Ayana Contreras, and I like to think of myself as an artist that works in sound. I currently host & produce a show called “Reclaimed Soul” on Vocalo 91.1fm (a sister station to WBEZ). The program features an all-vinyl soundtrack from my personal collection, as well as audio documentaries I’ve produced about people who are using old items to create new artistic or cultural endeavors. I also interview original Chicago Soul artists and musicians.
I am a DJ and music historian. I collect records (LPs & 45s), and enjoy the stories behind them, especially those recorded locally.
I truly love Chicago: where we’re going and where we’ve been.
Darkjive is about arts and culture with a purpose, rooted in the community (but not without humor). It’s about inclusiveness and uniqueness. It’s about the many facets of creation in Chicago. It’s about our common history and varied goals. It’s also about recognizing the value in the undervalued vestiges of what came before us (culturally… artistically… musically). What may have once been deemed obsolete, out of fashion, or otherwise lacking. The jive. I, for one, embrace the jive, the whole of our cultural inheritance. So, jive on.