Hybrid music genre lands in classical town
In a city that has been identified as a music hub for decades, it’s almost unthinkable that there could be underrepresented genres on the Athens scene, but some local venues and promoters have taken action this year. to bring new sounds.
Local company Aquemini 28 Entertainment held its first Afro-Caribbean First Fridays show last month at The Soundtrack, and the event is set to take place monthly at the downtown bar with Afrobeat vibes from Anthony “DJ Charger.” Johnson.
The next First Friday is scheduled for 9 p.m. Friday at The Soundtrack.
On September 4, Southern Brewing Co. will host the Aquemini Music Festival, a celebration of urban music that will feature bands on two stages, DJs, cultural food vendors, a fashion showcase, an art gallery and a Fun Area operated by Rucker Family Amusements.
“There is definitely a void for afrobeat, reggae and soca music in Athens,” Knowa D. Johnson, director and organizer of Aquemini 28, told the Banner-Herald. “We try to have a space for people to come together and enjoy these cultures.”
Afrobeat combines West African highlife and Yoruba musical styles with American funk, jazz and soul to create a playful, melodic sound against driving percussion with intricate rhythmic patterns. The Afrobeat genre was first developed in the late 1960s by Fela Kuti and Tony Allen and continued with contemporary artists such as Burna Boy and Mr Eazi.
The artists scheduled for the Aquemini Music Festival will vary in styles ranging from reggae and reggaeton to R&B, hip-hop and Latin music. Along with local bands like Aquatic Soul, Misnomer and Splitz, the lineup includes Diamond Elyse from Atlanta and M Lewis, Kanela & the GSG from Aiken, SC, Candy Morgan & Charlie Beatz and the Tennessee-based Natty Lovejoy Band.
For more information on First Fridays and Aquemini Music Fest, call (678) 740-3884.