The weekend is here, and if you’re a soul or house music head, you’re in luck: the next three days are filled with opportunities to hear some of the city’s (and the nation's) best DJs rocking some great music.
1) First up, tonight (Friday) DJ Kemit is hosting another edition of his regular Soul Makossa event. As usual, Kemit will be playing the best in Afrobeat, funk, Caribbean sounds and more — plus, I’m pretty sure he’ll be sneaking in cuts from his newly released album Everlasting. $5. 11 p.m.-3 a.m. the Sound Table, 483 Edgewood Ave. www.thesoundtable.com.
2) Next, on Saturday, the man known as Cozy Shawn will make his debut appearance at the eatery/lounge Sauced Atlanta, presiding over an all-vinyl set. Shawn is renowned for digging up the ultra-rare records, so get ready to get turned on to a ton of essential tunes. Free. 9-p.m.-1 a.m. Sauced Atlanta, 753 Edgewood Ave. www.saucedatlanta.com.
With the recent addition of one, two, three, FOUR rap legends — MC Lyte, Big Daddy Kane, Slick Rick, and the World's Greatest Entertainer™ Doug E. Fresh — ONE Musicfest just became a top priority among Atlanta's jam-packed Labor Day weekend calendar.
The third annual fest already features a lineup of decidedly hip urb/alt and rap acts, including indie soul kingpin Eric Roberson, R&B vocalist/songwriter Marsha Ambrosius, Southern spitter Big K.R.I.T., and electro-pop headliner Santigold. Not to mention the 11-hour DJ stage featuring the likes of Atlantans DJ DiBiase, DJ Kemit, Speakerfoxxx, DJ Salah Ananse, Rasta Roots, DJ Jaycee, DJ Fudge, Danny M, and more.
Then there's the FEST part: Shrimp and Crab Fest, Food Truck Village, live art installations, beer garden, mechanical bullriding, etc. But back to the music. Had to do a quick look back with some classic videos from golden era legends Doug E., Slick, Kane, and Lyte....
Hard to believe now, but Doug's Coke sweatshirt was hot streetwear back when he and Slick Rick performed "The Show" live on "Soul Train." Twenty years before the Dougie became a dance phenomenon, Doug E. taught us how to do the original on "Keep Rising":
This has got to be the coolest concept for a hip-hop interview show ever.
Writer Maurice Garland resembles a young MJG as he rides shotgun with Memphis rapper 8Ball piloting them through Atlanta's westside behind the wheel of a Bentley GT. The premise here ain't space age pimpin', it's bumping Ball's new solo album, Life's Quest, which drops today.
MG — that's Garland, not 8Ball's partner in rhyme — calls his new show "Sonic Route." (Peep the logo above.) And while this is the first episode under that name, the incarnation might have been his ride-along with Big K.R.I.T. back when the Mississippi rapper released his last mixtape 4 Eva N a Day in March.
The thing that makes this concept cool is that it's so true to the culture. Because what is Southern rap, really, if not riding music? Sure, we flirt with our crunk, clubby, drug-induced spells. But after the club, it's always back to the car. While they were riding subways up North and banging out West, were we in the South riding out — especially in a city like Atlanta where it's always taken 30 minutes to get anywhere outside your immediate surroundings. More than the drugs (syrup, weed, etc.), it's the distance that gives the music its drag. Which makes the car the perfect setting to listen to 8Ball talk about the thematic territory he covers on his new album.
If you're looking for another YouTube-based, local hip-hop interview show with an out-the-box format, check out the first season of "ATL Bite Life," which pairs Atlanta music industry celebs (2 Chainz, Big Block, Verse Simmonds) with host/foodie/industry head Nick Love at local eateries. Omnivore chopped it up with Love a few months back.
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