Wednesday, February 29, 2012

One More Nite of Black History

Legendary graffiti artist JamesTop began Black History Month celebrating Hip Hop icon Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 3D at the Azucarera Gallery in Sugar Hill, Harlem and ends it with One More Nite of performances at the Sapphire Lounge on the Lower East Side of NYC.

Most people don't hear the phrase "Hip Hop Icon" associated with Martin Luther King, Jr. very often, but in The Gospel of Hip Hop by KRS-ONE he is referred to as the King of Hip Hop. The Teacha explained why.
"Nowhere else in the World is the King's Dream so accurately expressed as within Hip Hop. Nowhere else in the World is there an international culture that is truly home to all races, classes, ethnicities and religious beliefs without prejudice other than Hip Hop... Nowhere else in the World is a person truly judged by the 'content of their character' as opposed to the 'color of their skin' than within Hip Hop... The King stated: Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. New York is where Hip Hop began culturally in the 1970s."

The article Dwyane Wade & LeBron James Showed Their Respect for a Hip Hop Icon went into more detail on the connection between Hip Hop and MLK Jr. and included pictures from a graffiti show curated by JamesTop at the Azucarera NYC Gallery in Harlem that honored that connection for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

For Black History Month, JamesTop added live performances to the gallery giving a third dimension to the two-dimensional artwork.

Some examples of the art on display are listed below with links to MP3 files of the performances that accompanied them.

I Am A Man

Art by LaRonz Murray

Spoken Word Performance by LaRonz Murray: MP3


Art by JamesTop

Performance of “Sittin’ on the Back of the Train Freestyle” by JamesTop: MP3

If you’re in NYC, stop by the Sapphire Gallery at 249 Eldridge St from 6-10 PM where JamesTop will be bringing graff by artists like like CASP1 with musicians and rappers like the Bandroidz and Double Green to deliver three dimensions of Black History for One More Nite in February. According to JamesTop, “The purpose of the show is to bring consciousness to the people.”

Do the knowledge.

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