The Neighborhood Character

The Neighborhood Character

Real Name:
Ari Robey-Lawrence
A decision to become the drummer for her 2nd grade after-school band (directed by a beloved local music teacher & all-around legend, Mr. Marlo Green) was where it all started for Ari Robey-Lawrence, aka the neighborhood character.

Ari is an emerging producer, vocalist, and dj born and raised in oakland, ca and austin, tx. She began piano and voice at a very early age, and soon moved on to drums and guitar, which she continued to pursue as she grew older.

During her undergraduate years, she played drums and guitar in a jazz combo known as The Dot Products, and co-hosted the radio show Fresh Fruets with fellow scholar and musician Scott Bartley on WAMH 89.3 FM (located in amherst, ma). It was in this time which she began to more fully develop her musicianship in an electro-acoustic realm.

After finishing her bachelor studies in film, literature art, and art history in the US, Ari relocated to Berlin in 2012 (where she'd previously worked as an intern and spent a semester exchange in 2010) to earn her master's in visual media anthropology. The music simply followed.

In 2014, Ari was invited by Lakuti and Tama Sumo to colaborate on a remix for The Knife's "Ready To Lose" under the moniker Tarantism, after forming a friendship over the course of her first couple of years living as an expat. During that time, she also came into contact with fellow Oaklanders Aybee, Damon Bell, and Afrikan Sciences (Eric Porter) of Deepblak Recordings. The group quickly formed a musical bond which led to the 2015 Uzuri release of a collaboration between Ari and Afrikan Sciences under the moniker Old Shady Grady & The Neighborhood Character; an otherworldly 'surprise' live closing of Room 2 at 2015's Freerotation (featuring an yet-to-be-titled project between Aybee, Ari, and Afrikan Sciences), as well as upcoming collaboration between Ari and Damon Bell.

In addition to DJ-ing at local venues and events (including Berlin's infamous Gegen), Ari was chosen to feature as newcomer by Tama Sumo for Expatriarch's Generations, an event series in which the radio show handpicks an established artist, who in turn selects their favourite up-and-comer and introduces them to the masses. See the link below for their video interview.

Selected discography The Neighborhood Character

Old Shady Grady & The Neighborhood Character - The Wilderness Sessions Part 2 - Tales From Caturday ‎(12")

The Knife ‎– Stay Out Here/Ready To Lose Remixes (12")
In Groups:


The Neighborhood Character Discography Tracks

Singles & EPs

UZURI 022 Old Shady Grady & The Neighborhood Character Old Shady Grady & The Neighborhood Character - The Wildnerness Sessions Part 2 - Tales From Caturday(12") Uzuri UZURI 022 UK 2015 Sell This Version

Videos (3) Edit