Written by | Ray Cornelius
I had the pleasure of attending and covering this year’s One Musicfest over the weekend and I must say I had an absolute blast. The one day music extravaganza took place on Saturday, September 10 at Atlanta’s Lakewood Amphitheater and featured a who’s who in Hip Hop, R&B and Soul music. It’s been three years since the last time I covered the event and it was so exciting to see it grow from a local concert to one of the South’s largest urban music festivals.
I arrived at Lakewood around 2 p.m. and just in time to see Andra Day take the main stage. The Grammy nominated-singer songwriter has had a phenomenal year and showed us exactly why her recent concert tour is one of the hottest tickets of the summer. She performed her popular tune “Rise Up” as well as the Nina Simone classic, “Mississippi Goddam,” where she changed the song’s lyrics to reflect the current police violence that has taken place in Florida, Louisiana and Minnesota.
Following Day’s show was rising hip hop star Anderson .Paak, who wrecked the “Hercules” stage on the east side of the amphitheater. The 30-year old rapper, who is one of BET’s ‘Best New Hip Hop Artist’ nominees, performed a medley of songs from his Venice album.
Other performers included BJ The Chicago Kid, Gary Clark Jr., A$AP Ferg and R&B vocalist Jazmine Sullivan, who performed her hits including “Lions, Tigers and Bears,” “I Need You Bad” and the crowd favorite, “Bust Bust Your Windows.” But it was the veteran performers like rap icons Busta Rhymes, Ice Cube and the high priestess of hip hop soul Erykah Badu, that drew the biggest cheers from the 20,000+ crowd.
“There is a lack of representation for soul, progressive hip-hop, alternative and rock, represented under one roof, in the format of music festivals in Atlanta”, states J Carter, ONEMusicfest Producer. “We have noticed that while there are many pockets of individuals that share taste in the same music, rarely do you see them share in this together. ONEMusicfest was created with the idea of ‘music as the universal language’. Over time we aim to grow this fest into a phenomenon and bring together different sectors of individuals through a unique music platform.”
The evening closed out with the highly anticipated Dungeon Family Reunion which included appearances by Andre 3000, Big Boi, CeeLo Green, Rico Wade, Big Gipp, T-Mo, Killer Mike, Cool Breeze, Witchdoctor, Backbone, Big Rube, Sleepy Brown, Ray Murray, Slimm, Calhoun and surprise guests Bone Crushers and T.I.
Lastly, a BIG SHOUT OUT to HBO’s new series “Insecure.” The show was a “godsend” and provided free phone charging stations for One Musicfest attendees. The pods were decorated nicely with huge images of the show’s star Issa Rae and tune in times. Can’t wait to share my interview with her on the October 8 edition of my radio show, “UPFRONT.”
Check out all of my ONE Musicfest photos below and thanks again to The Garner Circle for the media invite!
BJ THE CHICAGO KID
Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com