The weekend commemorating hip hop’s 50th birthday also boasted the Sparta Celtic Festival and shows by YMSB, Railroad Earth, Moon Orchids, The Concussions & more, recapped in photos at Local Spins.
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“Make some noise for 50 years of hip hop!”
That was the rallying cry this weekend in Grand Rapids — and across the globe — as performers and fans commemorated the 50th anniversary of a genre that’s shaped popular culture.
A cavalcade of regional stars kicked it all off at Sixman’s 50th Anniversary of Hip Hop Festival at The Pyramid Scheme on Friday night, followed on Saturday by the family-oriented One Peace Hip Hop Festival at Grand Rapids’ Martin Luther King Park — an event that boasted everything from DJs to graffiti art to breakdancing to basketball.
Scroll down for a photo gallery and some video highlights.
The long weekend of music didn’t stop there, with bands performing across West Michigan, including:
• Railroad Earth, Yonder Mountain and Leftover Salmon playing Bell’s Beer Garden Wednesday in Kalamazoo, aka, the biggest sold-out show in the Beer Garden’s history;
• Kalamazoo’s Moon Orchids — along with Wowza and Paul Fake — celebrating release of a new EP at Bell’s Brewery Eccentric Cafe, the same night that Joseph & The Velozians pumped up Old Dog Tavern just a stone’s throw away;
• Patty Pershayla & The Mayhaps revving up the Grand Haven Free Fridays concert series amid sunshine at Lynne Sherwood Waterfront Stadium;
• The 2023 edition of the Sparta Celtic Festival boasting performances by a host of bands at Sparta’s Rogers Park on Friday and Saturday;
• Basic Comfort, FINKEL and Headband Henny all performing new songs as part of a showcase at Bell’s Brewery Eccentric Cafe on Saturday;
• The Concussions bringing their masked surf-rock magic to the outdoor patio at Lucy’s in Grand Haven on Saturday.
The week recapped in photos and videos at Local Spins also features the next-to-last show in Rockford’s Rogue River After-the-Blues Series on Tuesday (with The Honeytones) and a special memorial to late drummer Bill Vits at Grand Rapids’ Fifth Street Hall, with hundreds of friends, relatives and musicians honoring Vits — a Saturday event that included a brief performance by the aforementioned (and unmasked) Concussions.
And ICYMI, check out separate reviews/photo galleries of The Avett Brothers at Wings Event Center, Dark Star Orchestra at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Unity Christian Music Festival in Muskegon, and Monday’s Grand Rapids tour stops by Train and Soccer Mommy.
Local Spins also covered Saturdays’ Walk the Beat festival in Grand Haven: Pocket Watch wins Grand Haven’s 2023 Walk the Beat amid sun-splashed milieu
VIDEO: Grand Rapids Celebrates Hip Hop’s 50th Anniversary
Sixman’s Hip Hop 50th Anniversary Fest at The Pyramid Scheme
One Peace Hip Hop Festival at Martin Luther King Park
PHOTO GALLERY: Sixman’s Hip Hop 50th Anniversary Fest at The Pyramid Scheme
Photos by John Sinkevics
Photos by Joshua Tufts and John Sinkevics
PHOTO GALLERY: Railroad Earth, Yonder Mountain String Band, Leftover Salmon
Bell’s Brewery Beer Garden
Photos by Derek Ketchum