Toshi Reagon didn't always want to be a singer/guitarist/drummer. "My dream was to be the first black woman national football player," says the 22-year-old performer. "People are still shocked."
At 14, however, after injuring her leg playing softball, Reagon gave up her gridiron dreams and began studying guitar and drums.
"Music has always kind of been in the background," she says. Her mother, Bernice Johnson Reagon, sings with the group Sweet Honey in the Rock. Her godmother is Pete Seeger's wife Toshi.
At first, music was just a pleasant pastime. But as she got older, Reagon realized she could make a career out of it. Wednesday's concert at d.c. space marks her fourth year performing seriously. Joining her in the two shows at 8 and 10 p.m. will be Kim Jordan on keyboards, Terri Lyne Carrington on drums and William Hanrahan on bass. Reagon's mom will make a guest appearance.
Reagon writes most of her own music, describing her compositions as "a blend of a lot of different styles, the way rock 'n' roll should be." And while she hopes that audiences have a good time at her concerts, she also uses her songs to make them think about serious issues like missing children.