Photo Credit: Pinnacle Films
If Athens music has a defining genre in 2018, it’s hip hop. Rap artists are driving the local conversation in more ways than one, from music to politics to social justice. Chief among these outspoken figures is Mariah Parker, aka Linqua Franqa, a UGA doctoral student turned Athens-Clarke County commissioner who has made national waves for both her provocative music and radical progressivism. Parker hosts this year’s Flagpole Athens Music Awards show and plays AthFest’s main stage Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Hip hop’s presence on this year’s AthFest lineup doesn’t end there. Also outdoors, check out Caulfield, a tripped-out local trap combo, at 7 p.m. Friday on the Hull Street Stage. After hours, the Club Crawl features two star-studded showcases, both on Saturday. The first, at Iron Factory, features the aforementioned Caulfield, as well as beatmakers KMG, gifted newcomer Seline Haze and raucous rap collective The YOD (who also play the Music Awards Thursday).
The second, now an AthFest tradition, is the AthFactor-Liberty Entertainment showcase at Ciné, which in its fifth year features its most flawlessly executed lineup yet. In addition to mainstay CatchOne Baldie, who is prepping the release of a summer mixtape, performers include supergroup BYV, buzzworthy emcee Valley Girl D, Classic City legend Ishues, scene-shaking youngster Kxng Blanco, mega-talent Dictator and a slew of up-and-comers, including DK, Solo 10K, Javae, Minnie Lea, Motorhead2x and many more. Hosts Chief Rocka and Mon2 will be on hand to guide you through what’s sure to be one of the weekend’s most memorable showcases, featuring some of Athens’ most essential artists.
See the full AthFest music schedule in the Calendar.