The lineup for the 5th Annual Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival is falling into place. With less than six weeks out BHF ’09 is shaping up to be the Hip-Hop event of the year. Just added today – dead prez, Torae and Marco Polo and host Uncle Ralph McDaniels.
Hip-Hop’s freedom fighters dead prez have carried the mantle for social change and intellectual revolution for over 10 years. Steadfast in their commitment these social activists/artists are the true conscious of Hip-Hop. Stic Man and M-1 first burst on the scene as prot√©g√©s of Brand Nubian’s Lord Jamar. Jamar discovered them in New York and helped them sign a deal with Loud Records. But being the new kids on the block of a powerhouse label like Loud (home to the Wu-Tang Clan and Mobb Deep) wasn’t easy. dead prez wasn’t always Loud’s priority but that didn’t stop them from building a fan base around their over-the-top performances. They released the critically acclaimed “Let’s Get Free” in 2000 which spawned the anthem “Hip-Hop.” Other releases included 2003’s “Turn Off The Radio”, 2006’s “Can’t Sell Dope Forever” and several solo projects. On June 23rd they are releasing their new project with DJ Green Lantern entitled “Pulse Of The People.”
Returning to host for the fourth time is Uncle Ralph McDaniels. As host of the uber significant “Video Music Box” and founder of OnFumes.com Ralph is in may ways the heart, soul and inspiration for The Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival. Video Music Box was one of the first TV programs ever to feature hip-hop videos primarily. Created in 1983 it was one of the most influential shows to give urban artists mainstream exposure. Many artists from Nas to Wu Tang to Biggie to 50 Cent to LL Cool J made their debuts on Video Music Box. Although ostensibly a local New York show, Video Music Box has been a major factor in the growth of Hip hop music and culture. Ralph’s latest venture OnFumes.com takes that same pioneering spirit to the purely digital medium.
Marco Polo and Torae
When it comes to beats and rhymes, Canadian producer Marco Polo and Brooklyn MC Torae don’t play, just check the resume. On his 2007 critically acclaimed album Port Authority, Polo recruited a who’s who of MC’s like Kool G Rap and Kardinal Offishall to ride over his hard-hitting, boom-bap instrumentals. Torae, on the other hand, has certified his rep as one of the game’s illest lyricists in a similar fashion with remarkable wordplay on his highly touted 2008 street album Daily Conversation. So, in the spirit of great hip-hop duos, the producer and the MC signed with Duck Down Records (home of Buckshot, 9th Wonder, KRS-ONE, Sean Price, Smif N Wessun, and Kidz in the Hall) in 2009 to release their collaborative album Double Barrel.
Torae had this to add, “It’s an honor to be included in this years BHF. I’ve been attending since day one as a fan & now to be part of the line up is amazing. People know I rep Brooklyn to the fullest, so to rock is what’s up. Big shouts to [Festival Executive Director] Wes [Jackson], the Brooklyn Bodega, Duck Down Records & everyone involved in making it happen.”
Also joining the festivities are March and April Show and Prove winners, Children Of The Night and Brown Bag All Stars. As finalists in the Show and Prove competition they have secured their spot on at least the second stage. They may still win the opening spot on the Main Stage. That will be determined after the May ‘Show and Prove’ on May 21st, at Public Assembly. 8thW1, Sleepwalkas, THOSE CHOSEN and Brokn English will be competing. Once the third finalist is selected, a winner will be chosen by Brooklyn Bodega. The remaining two finalists will play the second stage. For more info click here
dead prez, Torae and Marco Polo, and Uncle Ralph join Pharoahe Monch, DJ Premier, Styles P, Smif N Wessun, and J Period on the lineup.
The Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival 2009 will take place on June 18th, 19th and 20th. Events include a retrospective photo exhibit of the first four years, a kick off party, Family Day, The Main Day, and the Official After Party.
Later this week Brooklyn Bodega will be announcing a second round of Second Stage performers.
Check www.brooklynbodega.com for more info.
Tickets for the Main Day are available for only $10 at brooklynbodega.com and Fat Beats New York, 406 Avenue of the Americas # 1, New York, NY 10011, and (212) 673-3883.
Tickets for the 5th Annual Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival are available here
Brooklyn Bodega are the creators and producers of the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival. They are a collective of cultural programmers, marketing professionals, writers, designers and academics dedicated to the celebration and preservation of Hip-Hop culture. Their daily musings can be found at www.brooklynbodega.com.