Here's who to watch for at the Afro Punk Festival
Ten years ago, music industry vet Matthew Morgan and filmmaker James Spooner released the documentary “Afro-punk,” which highlighted African-American kids in the indie rock and punk scene.
Since then, they’ve built a community around Afropunk culture through the website afro punk.com and an annual Afropunk festival in Brooklyn that features music, films and food.
This year, the free festival will be headlined by hip-hop legends Chuck D and ?uestlove.
Here are other bands to watch for at the fest.
Often cited as the first African-American punk band, Death consisted of three brothers from Detroit. The band broke up in 1977 and remained virtually unknown until 2009, when its music was widely released for the first time. A doc about the group, “A Band Called Death,” was released earlier this year.
Britain’s The Heavy combines classic soul and funk with garage rock, resulting in a sound that has been described as a mashup of Curtis Mayfield and The Stooges. Its biggest hit “How Do You Like Me Now?” has soundtracked everything from ads to video games to an MSNBC talk show.
A drag queen credited with popularizing a style of New Orleans hip-hop known as bounce, Big Freedia was one of the first musicians to return to the Big Easy after Hurricane Katrina.
Williams is a Renaissance man who first became known for his performances at poetry slams. He later moved into music, working with artists such as Nas, Erykah Badu and Trent Reznor, while also finding the time to publish four books of poems.
Jada Pinkett Smith’s metal band (yes, you read that right) is one of the few groups that can claim to have toured with both Britney Spears and Ozzy Osbourne. After more than a decade playing together, the group can no longer be dismissed as just a celebrity side project.
The Afropunk Fest is at Commodore Barry Park on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 9 p.m., between Nassau Street and Park Avenue and Navy Street and N. Elliot Place, Fort Greene, afropunk fest.com, FREE.