My First Trip to AfroPunk!!!
Whenever I thought about going to AfroPunk, it would always be too late. The tickets would already be sold out! It felt like whenever I wanted to go I missed out because tickets were always gone in a flash. Well this year was special. I went with my best friend Rebekah, and we had an absolute blast! On August 25th, we put in extra work on our outfits, hair and makeup, brought a blanket, grabbed a bunch of water, hopped on the subway, and made our way to Commodore Park in Brooklyn to celebrate what would be the coolest music festival of the summer.
Prior to going, I only knew of one or two artists that were performing. The Internet and Miguel. However they wouldn’t be performing until much later in the day. We had a whole lot of time to explore, hear different talent, and take in all the creativity that was in the air. It was magical. Seeing so many people of color in one space expressing themselves through their fashion, and unafraid of any hateful speech was liberating to see and be a part of. Everyone I saw and met showed nothing but love and respect for one another.
My best friend, Rebekah, and I hung out at the Red Stage for the majority of the day. Once we found a good spot to see the artists we stayed near the area as much as possible.
Every artist I heard at the Red Stage was absolutely wonderful! Lion Babe had me jumping in my spot! Yuna, the breakout Malaysian artist, serenaded my soul with her voice. Daniel Caesar’s performance had people coming in droves! I had to bounce to grab some fresh air, but from what I could hear, he was amazing. His voice was so chill I felt like my very being was floating on an ocean. Everybody was singing along with him trying to match some of his smooth tones.
The last performance of the evening was the Internet! I had seen this group a year ago in NYC and it was great to see them again! They played their most popular songs such as ‘Special Affair’, ‘Girl’, and ‘Dontcha’. Of course they had to end the night with the crowd favorite, ‘Get Away’. This was actually the song that got me into the Internet in the first place. My one regret of the day is that I had to choose between hearing them over Miguel! Made me wish I had a clone of myself to experience both at the same time.
As I made my way home I was already planning for next year. I was lucky to be able to take part in a celebration of multicultural artists, musicians, and fashionistas. For many it was more than just a music festival. It was a celebration to be ourselves, and not to let the haters, racists, or bigots define who we are. I felt empowered being around people who made me feel like I don’t have to apologize for being myself.
AfroPunk means different things to different people, but you have to go at least once to find your own meaning. Until then I’m definitely not missing out for 2019 and neither should you!!!