Founded four years ago by Amy Rosenberg, the Overtown Music Project (OMP) has since been shining a light on the historic cultural contributions of the otherwise uncelebrated neighborhood of Overtown. OMP has introduced a free, after school music program into the area, in partnership with UM at Frederick Douglass Elementary School, and host seven events a year – six in throughout Overtown’s former entertainment district and one Miami Beach, showcasing and honoring some of the musicians who once made their living in Overtown.
We’ve all heard of Rock of Ages by now: in the coming weeks, the likes of Alec Baldwin, Tom Cruise, and Russell Brand will be cajoling around these parts in skin-tight leather pants, presumably sweating their celebrity asses off in the Miami humidity. The big budget Hollywood glam rock drama, whose producers so cynically (and appropriately) recreated the iconic Hollywood sign atop our beloved Mt. Trashmore, has transformed the area around NE 14st and N Miami Ave into LA’s Sunset Strip, circa the 1980’s. Affected businesses have had their buildings painted and rebranded in exchange for fat checks from the studio and a free makeover. Was it worth it?