FORT GREENE – Since launching in 2005 as a free local concert in Brooklyn, the Afropunk Fest has grown into an international movement with satellite events in Paris, London, Atlanta, and Johannesburg.
The event was originally inspired by the 2003 documentary film Afro-Punk by James Spooner that explores racial identify in the punk scene and features African-American bands including Bad Brains, Fishbone, TV on the Radio, and more. Spooner teamed up with music executive, Matthew Morgan, in 2005 to launch the popular festival, The Bridge BK reports. Spooner left after a few years and former music exec, Jocelyn Cooper, came on board to help Morgan manage the annual event.
An amalgamation of “Afro” (born of African spirit and heritage, though not always black) and “Punk” (a rebel with a DIY ethic) topped with an underdog’s spirit and determination, according to the fest’s website, Afropunk has evolved over the years into a creative, influential, diverse community “who were once seen as outsiders, but who now directly affect pop culture” via music, art, fashion, film, and other innovative outlets.
The mission of Afropunk is to “unleash freedom of expression, and honor the power of individuality while strengthening [the] community.” Enjoy the positive energy and vibes along with great music, food, art, crafts, and more this weekend when the Afropunk Fest returns to Commodore Barry Park in Fort Greene.
Afropunk has hosted many up-and-coming acts as well as world-renowned performers over the years including Grace Jones, Lauryn Hill, Janelle Monae, Tyler the Creator, Ice Cube, Lenny Kravitz, and D’Angelo.
Expected to welcome 70,000 attendees this year, according to The Bridge, the Fest has a stellar lineup including Solange, Soul II Soul, Raphael Saadiq, Dizzee Rascal, Thundercat, Macy Gray, The Cool Kids, The Skins, Princess Nokia, and many more.
The Fest will also feature art exhibitions, the Bites & Beats Food Festival, the SpinThrift Market showcasing work by NYC makers and crafters, as well as the Battle For The Streets skateboarding competition.
Also check out Afropunk After Dark, a series of events happening in Bed-Stuy, Fort Greene, and Williamsburg after the events in the park. There’ll be dance parties, a fancy dress ball, a comedy show, short films, and more live music. Learn more at afropunkfest.com.
Saturday tickets and all-weekend passes have already sold out. General Admission tickets for Sunday are still available.
When: Saturday, August 26 and Sunday, August 27, 12pm to 10pm
Where: Commodore Barry Park (Flushing Avenue between Navy Street & N. Elliott Place), Fort Greene
How Much: Tickets $55 General Admission