Remember the old game shows? You know the ones where the over-eager contestant would get to chose a prize behind Door No. 1 (a compact cd player!), Door No. 2 (a new leather couch!), or Door No. 3 (a new Subaru!).
This year's A3C Festival is a little like that.
While the laminated "map" to the events was studied diligently by some of the heads in attendance, by and large East Atlanta Village presented a maze of hip-hop wonders last night, taking a cue from the popular South By Southwest Fest in Austin, Tex. where music lovers wander and pop into bars and venues at will.
Early in the evening meaning 10 p.m. in hip-hop time Door No. 1 (the iStandard producer event) featured aspiring producers getting their beats critiqued by Drake's beatsmiths Tha Bizness, Rick Ross' phenomenal beat maestros J.U.S.T.I.C.E League, and Young Jeezy producer Don Cannon. While Door No. 1 wasn't a total dud, truth is even the most diligent hip-hop heads are not overly interested in listening to beats they haven't already heard 50 times on their iPod, no matter how much they insist otherwise.
By the time the fourth producer hit the stage, the crowd had already started getting restless. By then, I was starting to get irritated by their restlessness, thus forcing me to kick rocks. On to Door No. 2, the Perfect Attendance stage at the 5 Spot in Little Five Points.
Most things about this year's festival made sense. The timing in fall while similar festivals are in hibernation; the location a cool semi-hipster/biker area of town with a wealth of bars to eat and drink at; the line-up a good mixture of subterranean MCs rapping about rap, hood-ucated rappers rapping about the struggle and a few in between to keep most attendees satisfied.
The only thing that didn't make much sense is that the Perfect Attendance stage, which is probably the most popular, is located all the way in East Jesus Nowhere. Okay, so it's really about a five minute car drive away, in Little Five Points, but "car drive" is the operative word here.
At any rate, Door No. 2 was pretty animated with a good mixture of rappers, including new Internet phenom Curt@ins who wobbled between being a righteous leader and boning your girlfriend (it's like that sometimes) Alien1 and Heed, and Atlanta mainstays Sean Falyon, Siya and Pill.
Although entertaining, by the time 12 p.m. rolled around, I wasn't sad about checking out Door No. 3. Back to the village, Batman!
Lurking behind Door No. 3 was Spree Wilson, who recently put down the Peach State to take a bite of the Big Apple. Looking scruffy, but more poised than usual on stage, Spree, backed by punk group Tendaberry, proceeded to rock.
Yes, the sound was messed up so he couldn't even play his trusty guitar, and they cut his set short. But that didn't stop the crowd that packed into the small space at 529 from chanting for an encore. Ladies and gentleman, I finally found my Subaru!
With the plethora of doors to chose from at A3C, it becomes both a gift and a curse akin to living in Holyfield's house so much to chose from you're bound to miss something.
(Photo courtesy Dominick Brady)
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Thanks for reading, and thanks for the catch!
Tues, Dec 31st. Not 21st.
Innovative & fresh sound !!!