The Afro Punk Movement started when Matthew Morgan and James Spooner joined forces in 2002 and they had only one goal: Giving a voice to thousands of multi-cultural kids fiercely identifying with the punk scene. Morgan, a visionary with 15 years in the music industry, instinctively understood that the indie rock/punk/hardcore scene had powerful appeal beyond the predictable Caucasian audience; the passion evident in writer-director Spooners hours of riveting hand-shot footage was the indisputable proof. The result: 2003s Afro-Punk, the seminal cult classic film spotlighting Black Punks in America.
What can I say about the festival, despite the mass population of people that was in attendance, it was all stellar cast of performances from The Joe Jordan Experiment (Where Joe’s mom was a total beast on the drums) , Sinkane, Toshi Reagon, the sweet Purple Ferdinand (with her brand new electric ukulele) , Alice Smith and The Memorials.
The Afro Punk Festival is more than just music. They portrayed an art mural in the spirit of the festival, a custom bike show, a skate park with a Battle of the Streets presented by Nike and some cute thrift shops that sold some pretty amazing things.
The highlight of the festival was when everyone lost their ever loving minds when soul sista Erykah Badu came to perform with her laptop laden band, the Cannibanoids, singing all of her hits such as Mama’s Gun, On & On and Apple Tree. Erykah also brought along the always adorable rapper Mos Def along for the festivities.
Today is part 2 of the festival with Gym Class Heroes and Janelle Monae, so be sure to get a good patch of grass to sit on in the front if you want a good view!
Enjoy the show!