“In City Love, two gentle, humble teachers and musicians bring us powerful lyrics with mobilizing rhythms—inviting us into a conversation about race in America. They sing about racial justice in a way that is critical, inspiring and concurrent with the ideas about race and America found in both activist and academic spaces today. A performance from City Love would be a great way to begin—or sustain—dialogue about race in school. Their music makes you want to dance—sing—cry—speak out—and unite.” - Ali Michael, PhD, Director of Consulting and Professional Development at the University of Pennsylvania Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education
City Love is an awesome group that really takes time to connect with the audience around them. Being engaging and friendly, they were quickly able to adapt to our quirky Ursinus environment and make it a space where everyone felt comfortable and open. They performed songs that challenged our intellects and also just made us want to stand up and dance! It was also super cool that they stayed back to freestyle with other students. Truly an act of love, genuinely wanting to connect, and not just perform for the audience. City Love is a talented group that is able to shed light on important social issues through a powerful medium; music. -Ursinus College Sankofa Umoja Nia (SUN) Student Group
"Caselli and Sterling Duns (City Love) have a remarkable capacity for language, melody, meter and rhyme. With mind/heartfulness these two brothers are able to draw out the creative capacities of all those that share space with them. With a keen eye towards the social constructs, lived experience, and structural inequalities that impede meaningful connections across social and individual differences, City Love is able to create powerful spaces of affirmation and mutual recognition, where vulnerabilities are suspended and (inter)relationships can emerge. After their experience with a workshop that City Love facilitated, students at Swarthmore College shared the following reflections:
“Sterling and Caselli created a loving, understanding space from the very beginning, and because of that, everyone really supported each other at the end! There was also so much liberating energy, from rapping Dr. Seuss to performing as a group, which I think is a great way to engage with these issues that can initially be uncomfortable/difficult to discuss”
“The whole workshop was a "light bulb" for me because it helped me remember the importance of creative expression in the struggle for justice and equity... it was so refreshing to remember how important art can be!”
“It was one of the best workshops I've gone to on campus this semester. I was shocked at the way everyone (even total strangers) came together to create something so awesome!”
-Mo Lotif, Swarthmore College Intercultural Center Assistant Director
"Run, don't walk to bring City Love to your school! Their melodious presentation will inspire and entertain audiences of all ages. They truly are masterful in bringing a compelling message of hope, love and social justice! Wheeler students want them back!" -Princess Sirleaf Bomba, Director of Unity and Diversity at The Wheeler School in Providence, Rhode Island.
City Love spoke to and performed for a wide range of kids, ages 11-18. They brought light and wisdom when light and wisdom were needed. They brought joyful and positive music, music that engaged and spoke to our students. Dwight and Brian are two experienced teachers who know their craft well, two musicians who entertain and enlighten, and two human beings who are soulful and walk their talk. In one school day, they left an indelible impression on our community. -Young Un, Head of Middle School at The Wheeler School in Providence, Rhode Island
"City Love's work is insightful, thought provoking, and engaging. I see City Love contributing to schools by supporting healthy identity development, increasing empathy and understanding across diverse groups, and helping with conflict resolution. As an administrator at an independent school, I know that there is a deep need for their programs.” - Frances Hoover, Director of Admissions and Diversity at The Philadelphia School
City Love's performance was engaging, brought students and faculty to their feet and gave them an opportunity to participate so that it wasn't just a spectating experience. Dwight and Brian possess an authentic commitment to making the world a better place, and channel that in a way that is approachable and very accessible. I highly recommend them for any program that you are planning around social justice, diversity, community building, or equity issues. - Tran Kim-Senior, Coordinator of Intercultural Programs and Associate Dean of Admission at The Lawrenceville School
“A perfectly pitched presentation for middle school students generally and our middle school students specifically. The transformative power of the arts as a medium for discussing highly charged issues, especially at a time in life when people are trying to figure out who they are and how they want to be, was compelling, inspiring, and enriching.” - Michael Zimmerman, Head of School at Friends School Haverford
“Thank you so much for sharing your musical gifts with us at “Ending Mass Incarceration and the New Jim Crow.” I think the performance at our opening worship set the tone for our time together perfectly - It grounded us in Spirit, recognized our spiritual ancestors who have walked hard roads ahead of us, and called into the space those our society has shunned and shunted off to remote exile, all the while encouraging us to move forward with hope.” -John Meyer, Education Coordinator at Pendle Hill
“For my Community Day event this year, which is my high school's version of social justice/diversity day, I had the privilege of having Dwight and Brian lead a song writing workshop as well as perform during the closing segment of the day. I had caught a glimpse of Dwight's talents as an artist the summer before when we met at a professional development conference and was thankful to have thought of Dwight for the occasion. I could not have been happier with what Dwight and Brian brought our day. They facilitated an informative and highly engaging workshop that gave students an opportunity to tap into their creative juices as they explored various social justices issues. They learned how to collaborate in the creative process and had the invaluable opportunity to stretch themselves out of their comfort zones and build community in their shared passion for social justice and music. During the closing, Dwight and Brian brought just the right energy to help us reflect on our day and to think about how we could move from learning to action taking. Their performance was engaging, brought students and faculty to their feet and gave them an opportunity to participate so that it wasn't just a spectating experience. Dwight and Brian possess an authentic commitment to making the world a better place, and channel that in a way that is approachable and very accessible. I highly recommend them for any program that you are planning around social justice, diversity, community building, or equity issues.” -Tran Kim-Senior, Coordinator of Intercultural Programs and Associate Dean of Admissions at The Lawrenceville School
Haverford College - Spring Friend in Residence Brings Together Music and Activism
Pretty Progressive Blog - Top 5 Socially Conscious Songs to Spark Conversations with Kids
The Philadelphia School Blog - CD release concert and album information.
The Haverford School Blog - A review of our elementary school assembly.
NYOTA Magazine - (Interview on pp. 64-69) NYOTA means "star" in Swahili, and the magazine focuses on finding and promoting the rising stars in fashion, music and culture as well as people doing inspirational things in their communities.
West Philly Local - ‘We’re here to bring people together’: Check out new album by West Philadelphia conscious acoustic duo
Jesse Hagopian's Blog, "I Am An Educator" - The “More Than a Score” Anthem: The new song that explains the book and the movement against high-stakes testing!
Quaker Speak - "Guided by an inner truth: Quaker hip-hop artist Sterling Duns"
iRadioPhilly - Coverage of the city council's PHL Live competition finalists' concert
The Philadelphia School Blog - "Spreading City Love"