Flava Fest won’t be fresh out of goodies this year

By Christy Ross
September 20, 2007

photo by meredith edlow

“Hip-hop artists are often blamed for promoting violence and misogyny in their music…” Freshout Media said in their press release sent out on August 27. Freshout Media, along side of Goodie Goodie Productions, two Philadelphia-based marketing services companies, are out to change this stereotype of hip-hop artists through their three day Flava Fest event kicking off on Sept. 20.

Over the course of the three days Flava Fest hopes to capture hip-hop artists in a different light, specifically targeting the hip-hop cultures “four disciplines – breaking, emceeing, DJing and graffiti art,” Freshout Media said in their press release. Christopher Anderson, marketing director and partner of Freshout Media said in a phone interview that he wants Flava Fest to “portray a more positive side of hip-hop” as well as “turn new people onto a new perspective of hip-hop”.

In addition to Flava Fest hitting the streets of Philly on Sept. 20, the event will also be celebrating the 10 year anniversary of “The Gathering”, Philadelphia’s longest-running hip-hop event, which takes place the last Thursday of every month at The Rotunda on Walnut St.

Starting at 6 p.m. at 1231 N. Broad St. on Thursday, Sept. 20, Flava Fest will begin the three-day event with a slam poetry competition. A prize of $350 will be awarded.

Along with the poetry competition will be a display of custom sneakers, graffiti artwork, as well as open breaking ciphers. Admission is $5 and it will be open to all ages.

On Friday, Sept. 21 Flava Fest will continue the three day celebration at F.U.E.L Collection located on 249 Arch St. This event will focus on the dance aspect of hip-hop, which will include a series of “breaking, popping and locking dance battles.” Anderson said.

The event starts at 8 p.m. Flava Fest will have dancers coming from all over the United States to face off against some of Philadelphia’s best.

There will also be the preliminary round for the Freestyle Face-Off, a lyricist competition. This event is $10 to attend and is open to all ages.

The festival will continue into Saturday, Sept. 22 starting at 1 p.m. at the 40 St. Field (near Penn’s campus). This segment of the festival will bring hip-hop performances from local and regional talents.

Along with the performances, there will be vendors selling items such as artwork and clothing. An open dance floor will be available as well as a showcase of graffiti art.

The headliner event of Flava Fest will take place that Saturday night at the Trocadero Theater, where international recording artist Pharoahe Monch will take the stage. “Our main goal is to show we are truly pushing hip-hop to another level,” Anderson said.

Other performers such as Juggaknots, Reef the Lost Cauze and Philadelphia Slick will help round out the rest of the night. Anderson says he is “excited for all of these regional performers.” The final round of the Freestyle Face-Off will take place in between sets.

The concert is $18 to attend and tickets much be purchased in advance.

For more information on Flava Fest 2007, you can visit myspace.com/flavafest. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.

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Christy Ross

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