Cambridge, MA based Passim Awards $40,000 in 2021 Iguana Music Fund Grants to New England based musicians

Article Contributed by CK Communicati… | Published on Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Passim has awarded $40,000 to 23 musicians through its Iguana Music Fund. The Iguana Music Fund provides these grants annually to musicians for career building projects and for projects that provide community service through music. Established in 2008 after an anonymous donor approached Passim with the idea to start a program to support local artists’ career growth, the fund provides grants from $500 to $2,000 for musicians with a strong New England connection.  Several of the recipients will perform at Club Passim during the Iguana Music Fund Showcase on April 11, 2022 at 8:00 PM.

Grants are allocated in the areas of recording or manufacturing assistance, publicity and marketing support, equipment and instruments, songwriting retreats, tour support, special projects and other specific activities that promote artists work and/or professional growth. Over the past decade, Passim has awarded more than $513,000 in grants, funding more than 300 projects. This year, Passim received 126 applications from across New England.

This year, the Iguana Music Fund will help more than a dozen artists further their careers. Alida Mckeon, Chris Walton, Owen Kennedy, and Owen Marshall are all ready to put out their first records, while Honeysuckle is set to explore their new evolving sound on an EP.  The Green Tara Project are blending Nepalese music with Celtic and Americana and Jake Blount & the Vox Hunters are exploring Black maritime music with a full length record. Kimaya Diggs, C.J. Red Mouth, Coral Moons, and Pamela Means will be using the grant to purchase new performance and recording equipment. Finally, Lady Dust is heading out on tour and will use the grant to promote shows in the Midwest and Opera on Tap Boston will hire two additional singers..

Several of the grant recipients will use the money to better our community. Lisa Bastoni will use the grant to hold a songwriting retreat for women and non-binary individuals whose access to creative time and space have been impacted by the pandemic.  The Know Better Do Better Project seeks to encourage awareness of songs that have played a role in sustaining systemic racism, and then write new alternatives. Camerata Nova Anglia will hold a recital structured through story-telling featuring musicians of color. Medford Community Chorale & Youth Chorus will hold a concert to support the Citywide Hunger Free Initiative.  FLUKES creates new learning opportunities, bringing music to lifelong learners at community, rehab, memory care and assisted living facilities and centers in Maine. Kate Callahan will use the grant to fund a 7-week program designed to empower women through music education at the York Correctional Institution in Connecticut.

“With the state of live music still tenuous in our current world, the Iguana Fund is needed now more than ever,” said Abby Altman, Club Manager at Passim. “Last year, projects focused on home recording, solo albums, and providing high-quality online content. Some of that focus is starting to shift back to in-person events, and we’re confident these grants will not only help the individual recipients but impact communities across New England as a whole.”

Passim’s Iguana Music Fund continues to support multi-year “Baby Iguana” grants for  the Miles of Music Camp and the Sub Rosa Songwriting Retreat.

About Passim

The mission of Passim is to provide truly exceptional and interactive live musical experiences for both performers and audiences, to nurture artists at all stages of their career, and to build a vibrant music community. We do so through our legendary listening venue, music school, artist grants and outreach programs. As a nonprofit since 1994, Passim carries on the heritage of our predecessors-the historic Club 47 (1958—1968) and for-profit Passim (1969—1994). We cultivate a diverse mix of musical traditions, where the emphasis is on the relationship between performers and audience and teachers and students. Located in Harvard Square, Passim serves Cambridge and the broader region by featuring local, national and international artists. Our ultimate goal is to help the performance arts flourish and thereby enrich the lives of members of our community.

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