This past weekend I visited my old stomping grounds and decided to stop by the Afro-Punk Music Festival. I was drawn to the festival because my favorite band, Gym Class Heroes , were scheduled to play but cancelled due to an illness. The news made me sad inside. However , the day was still great for several other reasons.
Janelle’s performance turned my internal-and my literal- frown upside down. Watching her show was like watching a favorite movie with a new pair of eyes and a set of freshly cleaned ears. Everything seems new; the grimy lenses of familiarity are removed. That’s how powerful of a persona she has. I’m going to be super dramatic and say you’ll never really hear the music properly until you see Monae live.
Another favorite, I stumbled upon them way back in 2010 when they opened up for another show. I knew it would be a life-long affair when I was actually wanted to hear more of them rather than the headliner. There was a huge line to get it that I didn’t anticipate, so we only got to see the last few minutes of their set. They were worth it though.
Afros and Mohawks
True to its name, the Afro-Punk festival draws in the crowds that get the stinky eye everywhere else. Think the heavily tattooed, pierced, and people with vibrant colored hair that stands straight up.
I had as much fun people watching as I did watching the bands.
There were so many women with gorgeous hair- locks, twists, curls, and yes, AFROS. I’m sure I stared hard enough to make some uncomfortable but I’m determined to try out some of those hairstyles myself.
Afro-Punk is scheduled to return next year and if the line up is as impressive, I’ll be there.