Janelle Monae, Erykah Badu & More At Annual Afro-Punk Fest [PICTURES]Published by Victoria Ford on Monday, August 27, 2012 at 12:00 pm.
The 8th annual Afro-Punk Festival returned to Brooklyn’s Commodore Barry Park in full force,boasting a roaster of artists that included Alice Smith, Janelle Monae, and Erykah Badu. This year’s two day festival (August 25-26) was met with high expectations, as last year’s event was unceremoniously canceled because of Hurricane Irene. But, it quickly proved to be a welcomed consolation.
Day one of the festival, saw singer Alice Smith—clad in a pair of vintage high waist denim shorts—perform a short set that set the tone for the day. But it was Erykah Badu who performance marked the day’s highlight. The Grammy Award winning singer hit the stage—45 minutes late, of course—with DJ collective the Cannibnoids, performing classics from her 1997 debut album, Baduizm, and a few other hits, including “Love of My Life”—which saw Yasiin Bey (p.k.a Mos Def) make an on-stage appearance.
Day two was met with more people, and a rousing set by Janelle Monae. Pharrell Williams hit the stage to screams and cheers to introduce the newly named face of CoverGirl cosmetics to the crowd. Rocking her signature uniform of black and white, the singer was a ball of energy from start to finish, serving what could have been considered the best performance of the entire festival.
A veritable mash up of punk, funk and rebellion, this year’s event also featured a Nike Battle for the Streets skating competition, Spin Thrift Market, Bites & Beats food-truck roundup, and a custom-bike show.
Other acts at this year’s festival included Spank Rock, Reggie Watts, Bad Rabbits, and The Memorials.
In 2005, Afro-Punk Festival debuted at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) celebrating and unifying the cultural cornerstones of Afro-Punk: music, film, skate, and independent and influential individuals.