Oakland Music Festival 2013
The Coup, Dam-Funk, New Diplomat, J-Boogie's Dubtronic Science, Vokab Kompany, Bang Data, James & Evander, Trackademicks & The HNRL, Dead Klown Society, Lights Down Low, Sweater Funk, Kev Choice, thePeople, 45 Sessions, Suns of Temple, Trill Team 6, Wonway Posibul, Funk Revival Orchestra, Religious Girls, and More Acts to Come...Plus, The Best Local Restaurants, Beers and More!
Doors 11:00 AM / Show 12:00 PM (event ends at 8:00 PM)
This event is all ages
Watch & Listen
Oakland Music Festival 2013
Two Stages | Over 20 Acts | Oakland's Best Restaurants, Craft Distillers & Brewers | Live Art | much, much more
The Coup is a political hip hop group based in Oakland, California. It formed as a three-member group in 1992 with rappers (Raymond) Boots Riley and E-Roc along with DJ Pam the Funkstress. E-Roc left on amicable terms after the group's second album, but appears on the track "Breathing Apparatus" on The Coup's third album, Steal This Album. The group is now a duo.
The Coup, part of the sub-genre of political hip hop, is politically radical and Marxist in their music, and align themselves with other radical hip-hop groups like dead prez. Their music is characterized by electronic sounds and bass-driven backbeats overlaid by humorous, cynical and sometimes violent lyrics criticizing capitalism, American politics, pimping as a form of patriarchal exploitation, and police brutality, among other things.
The Coup's debut album was 1993's Kill My Landlord. In 1994 they released their second album, Genocide and Juice. After a four-year recording hiatus, the group released the critically acclaimed Steal This Album in 1998, the title of which was reminiscent of lifestylist Abbie Hoffman's Steal this Book. The album featured the stand-out single "Me and Jesus the Pimp in a '79 Granada Last Night". The online magazine Dusted called Steal This Album "the best hip-hop album of the 1990s".
Known as Los Angeles' "Ambassador of Boogie Funk," Dãm-Funk represents the citizens of the Funkmosphere. Headquartered in the Leimert Park section of L.A., Dãm (pronounced: 'Dame' as in Damon) spent the last few years cultivating a musical renaissance rooted in the early-'80s styles known as Boogie, Modern Soul and Electro-Funk.
The next phase of the Ambassador's mission is his debut album Toeachizown: continuing the classic West Coast tradition into today's scene with Dãm's own original "Modern-Funk" compositions. By plugging in his arsenal of vintage synths and drum machines, Dãm channels the galactic harmonies of his inspiration into his own brand of new boogie. Stones Throw Records' like-minded honcho Peanut Butter Wolf brought Dãm on to the team to glide into the future with his unique, synth and bass-driven vibe. It's a promising new chapter for Southern Cali space funk.
Electronic Alternative Rock band New Diplomat manages a sound that is both fresh and familiar. Hailing from all over the world (Italy, U.S, Argentina and Uruguay) and uniting in San Francisco, CA they crafted an EP evocative of the accessibility of The Killers with the creativity of Radiohead or Muse.
The debut “Buy Yourself Some Freedom” has already landed them sold out shows, festival appearances such as Noise Pop 2012, SXSW 2012 and BFD 2012 as well as a single produced by Dan the Automator (Gorillaz, Kasabian), soon to be released.
With only a year together under their belts; dawn is just breaking for this Bay Area five-piece.
J-Boogie's Dubtronic Science
J Boogie (San Francisco, Om Records)
San Francisco resident and world-renowned DJ/producer J Boogie continues to challenge the boundaries of the music world across genres, styles, languages and borders throughout his 20-year career. This truly unique artist speaks to his listeners through a diverse musical language he created integrating techniques and musical genres including downtempo, dub, hip–hop, soul, reggae, funk, African, Latin, bhangra, dancehall, disco, electro, bass, tropical, dubstep and house. Constantly revolutionizing the game, creating new sounds, and always keeping fans on their feet, J-Boogie continues to lift music to its full potential through his distinct approach and one-of-a-kind style.
He’s delivered his masterful mix of culture, soul, rhythm and beats both at home in the Bay Area through his award-winning radio program “Beatsauce” on KUSF, and around the globe spinning DJ sets in countries like Colombia, India, Japan, and Spain. J-Boogie’s local success has earned him awards such as “SF’s Best Club DJ” by SF Weekly, "SF’s Best Radio & Club DJ" by citysearch.com and "Best Hip–Hop Radio Show" by SF Bay Guardian. His global success has earned him acclaim and opportunities worldwide, including spots on radio and television both here and abroad, sportswear sponsorships, and the opportunity to DJ the Tokyo Dome for an NFL football game.
Throughout the years, J-Boogie has also provided musical ecstasy for millions, blowing it up on the festival circuit at Coachella, Bonnaroo, Treasure Island Music Fest, Outside Lands, Lightning in a Bottle, Bumbershoot, SXSW, WMC, Harmony Fest, Earthdance, High Sierra, Sundance Film Fest, The Winter Olympics 2010, Power to the Peaceful and Burning Man. By popular demand, J-Boogie’s DJ skills have landed him bookings in world-class clubs such as Turntables on the Hudson, APT, Deep Space NYC, 18th Street Lounge, Halo, Temple Bar, Afro Funke, Root Down, Firecracker, The Do Over and Deep LA. He has also graced the stage on tour with Widespread Panic, Bassnectar and Spearhead, and has opened for legends like George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, Mark Farina, Louie Vega, DJ Krush, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Breakestra, RJD2, Herbaliser, and Nickodemus.
J-Boogie’s widespread success and longevity in the music industry can be attributed to his exceptional style and ability to constantly revolutionize music. As one of the first DJs to incorporate musicians and vocalists into a live band / DJ fusion set, J-Boogie has truly redefined what it means to be a DJ. With this groundbreaking concept, J-Boogie has created a new realm of live performance and a new type of record. J-Boogie brings this exclusive style to life with his band “Dubtronic Science” in live sets as well as in their self-titled debut album that dropped in 2003, featuring artists like Goapele, Gina Rene, People Under the Stairs, Capitol A and Tony Moses.
For his last album , Soul Vibrations, J-Boogie put together a new “Dubtronic Science” band featuring a horn section, Latin percussionists and MCs. Like its predecessor, J-Boogie’s second album features an impressive line up of artists including The Rebirth, Rich Medina, Lyrics Born, Ohmega Watts, Zion I, Crown City Rockers, Jennifer Johns, Deuce Eclipse, Capitol A, The Mamaz, Jazz Mafia, Lunar Heights, Tony Moses and more. He has also created a full Soul Vibrations: Dub Remixes version, dubbing the album into outer space through his studio’s analog delays and space echoes.
J-Boogie has also contributed his genius sounds to a wide array of mix tapes, remixes, and albums. He has released remixes for artists such as Widespread Panic, Nickodemus, DJ Vadim, Alice Russell, Miguel Migs, Vieux Farka Toure, Karsh Kale, The Rebirth, Zeph & Azeem, Mark Farina, Zion I, Goapele and Soulstice, and has been featured on Mark Farina’s Mushroom Jazz 5 & 6, Om Lounge series, Ubiquity compilations and remix projects. His mix CD series Leftism, In the Mood, Electro Soul and Universal B Breaks have all become collectors’ items at music boutiques.
J-Boogie’s vast contributions to the music world and his ongoing commitment to his own projects as well as the projects of other artists have allowed him to make fans and friends out of some of the most respected artists in the industry. The game’s most esteemed DJs are already buzzing about J-Boogie’s newest creation, and always have nothing but the best to say about not only his work, but his character as well.
Vokab Kompany are two MC/singers from San Diego, California. Their new album, VKCE, a collaboration effort with up and coming production/musician duo Crush Effect, has been critically acclaimed and filled a void at the intersection of the hip-hop and EDM worlds. 'VKCE' is Hip-hop, it's electronic, it's indie - it's a shout out to the past, and a taste of the future. Vokab Kompany's Matt Burke describes the experience: "As musicians, it's an ever evolving world; genres are a thing of the past, so we (VK) were really lucky to have teamed up with producers that pushed the boundaries of our boxes. We got outside our comfort zone, stamped a VK next to CE, and the result was something new entirely."
The brazenly dynamic sound on VKCE has quickly garnered the attention of television and film. The record already has two national commercials, for a major carmaker (debuting 2013) and Southern Comfort. The album debuted at #47 on the iTunes hip-hop charts, behind only major-label releases from T.I. and Chief Keef among all hip-hop records released that week.
The team has been blessed with a slew of great press. In addition to a feature on electronic music in the August print edition of SPIN, and "climbing" George Washington Bridge with Al Roker, the band has won best hip-hop group at the San Diego Music Awards for three years in a row, and even impressed Prince Charles when he stopped by Solana Beach's Belly Up to catch a VK show.
Straight out of the Bay Area, Bang Data comes armed with slick guitar, gritty synth & bass and banging electro-acoustic drums. Their debut full length album "La Sopa" (The Soup), dropping March 13 2012 on Itunes, is loaded with heavy grooves, Samba-Ska-Cumbia and hints of Afro-Electro-Bossanova. Much like its name, La Sopa is a melting pot of rhythms and infectious beats that reflect the band's backgrounds and the undeniable influence of northern California Hip Hop, Rock and Latin music. "Our sound is like a soup and so are we...shit, if you think about it, so is everybody else in the world...In this day of age, with internet and mobile devices, etc, all these different cultures are meshing together becoming a "sopa". People are constantly influencing and inspiring each other whether its art, music, politics. the world is one big ass
soup if you ask us!"
Bang Data is formed by Bay Area's MC Deuce Eclipse on lead vocals, who's well known by hip-hop fans as an accompanying voice to the legendary Zion I andmusician/producer Juan Manuel Caipo who helped propel the latin alternative music scene in the Bay Area early on in his career. Bang Data was born a side project that quickly shifted into something more while working together with Amplive of Zion I who at the time was producing Deuce's solo album. Since partnering in 2008, Deuce Eclipse and Caipo, of Nicaraguan and Peruvian heritages respectively, have created music that strikes a chord between what they grew up listening to with their parents and the contemporary influences of life in California. Mixing Rock, Reggae,
Hip-Hop & Latin beats and infusing them with a soulful bilingual (English/Spanish) delivery by Deuce Eclipse, Bang Data has created a sound that is unmistakably theirs. The group has performed with acts such as Calle 13, Ozomatli, Zion I, Natalia Lafourcade, Enanitos Verdes, Panteon Rococo & Chico Trujillo to name a few.
Their debut CD EP "Maldito Carnaval", featuring seven tracks, was released in the fall of 2009 to rave reviews. Their song "Drivin' Steady" has been featured as the iTunes Latino Song of the Week. The EP has special guest performances by Karl Perrazzo, from Santana, Steve Bradley from No Doubt and Amplive from Zion-I.
On March 13, Bang Data will make its mark with La Sopa. La Sopa was mixed and produced by Caipo and includes 5 songs from its debut EP, including the self-titled single "Bang Data", which was featured on A&E's Emmy® Award winning television drama Breaking Bad plus 9 additional songs including an Afro/Latin Hip Hop version of "Toro Mata", featuring Peruvian living legend Eva Ayllón. The album will also feature live favorites "ICU" and "Veneno", Afrobeat-flavored "Sucio Amor" and electro gritty cumbia tracks "Que Se Mueva" and "Bomberos". La Sopa brings some flavor for everybody. Get it while it's hot!
James & Evander
Nestled deep into the heart of Oakland are the two producers behind the future-poppin' duo James & Evander. James & Evander (a.k.a. Adam Myatt and Glenn Jackson) began crafting electro sounds in the latter's apartment while attending an art school over five years ago. Since then, the pair's sound has evolved far beyond its instrumental indietronica roots and now takes form as subdued, lush synth-pop voyages complete with sparkling melodies and melancholy vocals. Citing influences as disparate as Dntel-style techno, blissful chillwave, and contemporary pop, James & Evander's productions are truly a hybrid, one which has yielded a number of original releases and an on-going remix series.
Dead Klown Society
5 face painters dropped their brushes and picked up a new sound. 2 Parts metal,2 Parts funk and 1 part ska/reggae. All parts scary grin.
Back in the day..we were all part of another Great band that became an institution in S.F. Well, in our minds. Lots of face paint (NO ICP!) Lots of circus folk and lots of wack-ah-doo...
Welp, all things must change and grow or Flip and drown..or Explode and simmer..either way. We moved on. The many a month later..decided to sit down and try something else. So, we did. Changed the roster slightly. Took off the paint. Hit an E chord. Boom.
Emerging from the ashes of a Klown band and full circus, These 5 empty fools sought to reclaim their scattered dreams and fire them out of a 50 foot cannon into your earholes!
Lights Down Low
Lights Down Low aka LDL has been a primary fixture in San Francisco nightlife for over 6 years now. Bringing in ahead of the curve talent locally and from across the globe Lights Down Low is where people in the know go to party and hear the best in dance music. Not afraid to mix genres, cultures, crews, and gender Corey Sleazemore and Richie Panic work hard so that the audience of LDL can party with ease, express themselves and maybe become intoxicated.
Rotating between the best venues in SF the boys of LDL are always looking for a great soundsystem, excellent vibes, and unique acts. The list of acts who have thrown down under the Lights Down Low banner is not only long but profound
San Francisco's Sweater Funk DJ crew have been the city's most dedicated purveyors of the funky subgenre known as BOOGIE since the summer of 2008. Their vision to bring boogie, modern soul & 2 step soul strictly on vinyl originals to the masses has earned them a diehard following who pack The Knockout nightclub every Sunday. They’ve won SF Weekly’s Best new club 2009, had a hand in releasing a few of their friends boogie records and have hosted artists such as Leroy Burgess (The king of boogie), Steve Arrington of Slave, Dam-Funk, Daz-I-Kue, DJ Spinna, Mayer Hawthorne, Peanut Butter Wolf, Kon and Amir, Onra, Benedek, Mr. Peabody Records, Cool Chris and San Francisco's own K-Maxx!
Pianist. Emcee. Producer. Bandleader. Sideman. Music historian. Kev Choice wears many hats, and all of them fit. Blessed with prodigious talent, plus the skill and dedication to his craft to pull it off, the Oakland-based artist is redefining what it means to be a musician in this day and age. Not too many classically-trained pianists who hold Master's degrees in jazz can rock microphones with blazing-hot 16s.
Yet such versatility comes natural to Choice, whose diverse array of influences ranges from Prince to Rakim to A Tribe Called Quest to Stevie Wonder to McCoy Tyner to Chopin and Ravel.
"I grew up in the Hip-Hop era," he explains. "I had love for Hip-Hop before I even knew what classical music really was." Hip-Hop, he says, "was always the music that helped me express myself the most," while "Classical music gave me a broader understanding and appreciation for music beyond Hip-Hop."
Choice remembers being "heavily into vinyl" as a young child, which helped him to develop his ear for music. He began playing piano at age 11, and was soon recognized as a prodigy. As a teenager, Choice played in classical and jazz ensembles as part of the UC Berkeley Young Musicians Program, and continued his studies at Xavier University of Louisiana (New Orleans) and Xavier University of Louisiana (New Orleans)–where he graduated with a (MM) in music.
Post-grad school, Choice became an in-demand sideman, recording and touring with the likes of Michael Franti and Spearhead, Lyrics Born, Too $hort, Ledisi and Goapele. In 2007, Lauryn Hill asked him to be her musical director, a gig which took him to 12 countries. Hill, he says, "was very influential in my musical development as an artist " – exposing him to Ethiopian and world music, rock and reggae.
Working with L-Boogie, Choice reflects, "showed me that I was capable of anything and that I should always be pushing myself musically, never get comfortable in your abilities, and always speak and say what you feel in your music without compromise." He's since added to his international resume by touring Europe with The Coup, and has also worked with Dwele, Martin Luther, Amel Larrieux, Omar, Joi, and Souls of Mischief.
But Choice isn't just a sideman. As a solo artist, he's opened for Robert Glasper, Mos Def, Digable Planets, DJ Quik, and J Davey. He leads a jazz-hip-hop-funk big band, the Kev Choice Ensemble, in addition to producing and performing his own material, which includes original jazz and classical compositions as well as classical- , jazz-, and funk-inspired hip-hop.
Choice has composed hip-hop sonatas and recorded rhymes to classical melodies, recorded a new song per day for an online series called The Daily Dosage, and has recorded several solo projects, including The Bailout and The Inauguration mixtapes, which highlighted his lyrical skills as well as his musical talents.
Being able to read and play music gives Choice an advantage over average emcees and producers, he says. "I can communicate my musical ideas in multiple ways… I can take a beat that I make, and write it out for a band or an orchestra, or any configuration of instruments."
As an emcee, Choice has superb flows, and consistently conscious, intelligent subject matter– reminiscent of a West Coast version of Talib Kweli or Nas. It's tempting to sleep on his vocal abilities, given his musical excellence – until you've seen him freestyle on stage, nonchalantly ripping verse after jaw-dropping verse.
Performing live, he says, is "a way to take people on a journey. I want people to feel highs and lows, experience emotions, and relate to the things I'm saying in the music. I want people to see the amazing musicians in my band play at a high level and have us touch them with our musical gifts individually as well as collectively. I definitely always look to reflect my diverse musical influences in a show. I try to combine classical, jazz, soul, funk, rock, drum & bass, electro, and all types of music, in a Hip-Hop context. I like to stay current with my show, constantly adding new elements, trying new things, and trying to take it to a higher level."
Music is what fuels Choice's aspirations. Like a jazzman of old, he's known for a rigorous work ethic which places him in a constant cycle of rehearsal to show to studio. Rarely is he not involved in multiple projects concurrently – his current endeavors include a live KCE album; a studio EP of all-original material; a hip-hop opera; and independent film and TV scoring. As a bonafied composer with hip-hop chops, entering such Quincy Jones-like territory would seem like more of a natural evolution than a stretch for Choice.
Currently based in his hometown of Oakland, Choice has also spent considerable amount of time in the South and Midwest, attending college in Louisiana and Illinois and living for awhile in Atlanta. "I may travel and dip to different places from time to time, but The Town will always be home," he says. "I grew up in Oakland so I definitely have a strong connection to the city and community."
Today's state of black music, particularly mainstream rap, is a concern for many, including Choice, who imparts, "the subject matter is often very offensive, and centered around money, sex, drugs, and other subjects that aren't positive… I definitely feel we need more of a balance again."
Choice aims to not only return hip-hop to the cultural standards it once had, but surpass the genre's creative peak by adding new layers of musical nuance into beats, rhymes, and swaggadoccio. His artistic vision, he says, is to be "an artist that combined Hip-Hop with a type of musicality that has never been done" and to "make conscious Hip-Hop music that is also accepted on a mainstream level."
The absolute truth is that hip-hop in particular and black music in general, desperately needs a Kev Choice: a true musician, cultural historian, and urban griot dedicated to cultural expression and the art of making quality music. Sometimes, the most unique, original Choice is the best Choice one can make.
thePeople started in November 2007 when some djs and music lovers realized a shared concern that the East Bay was overlooked as a taste making force. Oakland, with its history as a community of immigrants, transplants, leftists, same-gender-lovers, artists, and people of color, was an obvious place to create a gathering focused on creative community building through art and culture. thePeople quickly caught on and invigorated nightlife in the East Bay by with fresh dance music, fresh energy, and by mixing music, with other creative strands from visual arts, to dance, fashion and food. Guest artists created live paintings and photo mosaics. Local activists registered voters. Local chefs sold tasty grub. All the while, the djs were dropping forward looking soulful tracks from across a spectrum of genres. You could hear cutting edge bass driven broken rhythms folded into Afrobeat or Brazilian flavored tracks. Of course the sounds of hip-hop, and the Caribbean would be heard. But the tracks always came from the influential rather than the derivative commercial end of the record crate. Oceans of dancers sweating until the lights came on became a regular occurrence. Meanwhile, world class urban dance artists of any style were conjuring ciphers and artisan vendors displayed their jewelry and t-shirts. But, the hallmark of the party may not be any of these things. It may be that most any night at thePeople you will see old friends and meet some new ones.
Suns of Temple
“Suns of Temple” is a live electronic house music group that consists of three artists. There is a live drummer (Xavier Jimenez) playing an 18 piece stand up percussion set along with a Roland Octo pad drum machine for added drum samples-sounds and effects. Second there is a key boardist-synthesiser/
singer producer (Jaswho?) playing keys, MCing and vocals. And third there is the DJ/producer/conductor (Paul Hemming) laying down the musical journey that the “Suns” take the dance floor on.
The Suns formulated as a group in October of 2009. The group has performed at some note worthy venues/events such as Mezzanine, Sound Factory and at the SF Love Parade right at City Hall.
Trill Team 6
Rap Game Seal Team Six, Trill Team Six, after much political discourse and too many shots, came to the conclusion that "killin the game" was much too easy. Contemporary Oakland futurists believe, to gain respect from fringe societies, such as ones that live in turmoil and blight, one needs to express the idealism of the past and continue with the forward thought process of a progressive future. Trill Team Six does this through up and coming rappers, producers, and cutting edge dj's at their disposal. Last but not least they do this by being prolific with their internet presence. Oh yeah, they used to have a jeep.
Wonway is a creative hiphop doitall: MC Freestyle Champion, DJ, radio host of ThinkBeat Radio (All Day Play and KPFA) and co-architect of the legendary San Francisco Wednesday Night Sessions with The Park. In his short time returning to being a full time DJ, he has already played with Afrika Bambaataa, Tony Touch, Bobbito, Garth Trinidad,
Neil Armstrong, and Quantic just to name a few.
His afrolatin hiphop jump, Makossa has grown in popularity to spawn the incredible monthlies in SF, Makossa West, and most recently New York, with the Makossa BK Cookout. His style is soulful party hiphop fused with Latin, Afrobeat and the occasional slap. His "Makossa Classics" mix series is crack for dancing fiends and a must have for music heads, receiving accolades from people such as Erykah Badu and
feautured on numerous influential websites including Okayplayer and Remezcla.
Funk Revival Orchestra
Founded in Oakland, California in 2008 The Funk Revival Orchestra (F.R.O.) was built for one purpose alone:.... To bring back those rare, funk and latin grooves from the late 60's into the late 70's that you hear sampled on all those old, classic hip hop LP's into clubs and venues throughout the greater bay area..... The band's line-up is a full 9 piece ensemble featuring a three piece horn section, four piece rhythm section and two lead vocalists.
Religious Girls are a diverse group of multi-instrumentalists, with each member hailing from separate musical backgrounds that ranges from metal to noise to math rock and pop. Using their talents, Religious Girls focus thier energy into creating beautiful harmonies and layering them over intricate percussive ryhthms. Preferring to play on the floor near listeners rather than a distant stage, they feel that no matter how high of quality a recording may be the live set is what moves people, and therefore focus on creating intimacy with the crowd. Collectively, the band has tried to push aside the standards of popular song writing with non-repeating structures, an intricate mathmatical style, and a carefully laid out set in which all songs are interweaved into one. Religious Girls offers an intense and dramatic set, leaving viewers in awe by the end of the performance.
Oakland quartet that could be the Bay's own Animal Collective. "As they began their set, my whole perception of noise and music was completely blown out of the water. Religious Girls took the rhythmic pounding of HEALTH and the tropical loveliness of High Places and made it their own, a completely new sound that was as beautiful as it was harsh and brutal. ... The manipulated vocals through the microphones and the call and response keyboard and drum melodies amazed me and captivated me in the best way. They were absolutely fucking terrific." --KEXP Blog