ONE MusicFest Recap: Three Generations, Three Sounds, One Fun Time!
By Star Watson
The goal to bring soul, progressive hip-hop, alternative and rock music under one roof, as founder J. Carter set out, was definitely accomplished. Although it seemed like various walks of life were peppered throughout the crowd, the vibes traded amongst one another pulled everyone together for a pleasant time.
From hip-hop legends to American Idol finalists, One MusicFest had a soulful and playful list of talent gracing the Park Tavern stage. Acts like Tortured Soul, The Foreign Exchange and The Cool Kids had the crowd entertained, while Chrisette Michelle and The Pharcyde brought their contrasting tunes under one roof for everyone to enjoy.
The beginning seemed like a showcase with Kyron Leslie and Anoop Desai, which was the case for Leslie who won the One MusicFest "Searching for the One" Contest. Desai, who most folks may know from American Idol, brought the soul pop to warm up the crowd. His play on Michael Jackson's "Human Nature" and Chris Brown's "She Ain't You" got the surprised crowd dancing to his smooth vocals. Tortured Soul, a live-house trio from Brooklyn, had the entire park dancing like it was studio 54 - not like we were out in the HOTLanta weather.
Anthony David brought his eclectic R&B to the party, giving the crowd a little rock, a little hip-hop and, of course, that feel-good, I-want-this-played-at-my-wedding soul. Toting his guitar, he brought Phife Dawg out to sing "Electric Relaxation," making the audience lose it! It's kinda my background anyway, but it's very exciting with all these different type of artists here," he said.
Things got a little interesting once The Cool Kids came out. It went from pop to house to soul to a very sharp turn into strictly bass-pumping hip-hop. Fortunately, the crowd was feeling it (despite the microphone un-check) because the duo had it feeling like "we bringin' '88 back," as they promised. There were a few folks doing the wop there too!
The Cool Kids
Photo: Star Watson
As if The Cool Kids' throwback sound wasn't enough for One MusicFest, Phife Dawg as the guest host kept the old school hip-hop vibe going as well. Not to mention The Pharcyde's feel-good energy! You'd a never thought these cats were in their 40's, as much as they bounced around the stage, danced with the ladies and dared anyone to question their stamina. "If I told ya, I'd have to kill ya," joked Uncle Imani. Then again, who doesn't know Black don't crack.
Chrisette Michelle gave fest goers who been there for 8 hours a second satisfying wind, just enough to enjoy her 45-minute set. Full of style, empowerment and praise, this singer bellowed out songs that made every woman feel like a million bucks when she got done.
It was a joy to see nearly three generations of a people come together in the name of music. "It's like when you eat you don't want the same thing every night. The variety here gives you a little bit of everything," said Nicolay of The Foreign Exchange. Whether the boat floats on boom-bap or synth-style soul, One MusicFest had it covered. "It's lik