At BAMS Festival, the stage is set for an array of local voices
Nineteen acts from the Boston area and around the country will sing, rap, and samba on two stages in Franklin Park at the Boston Art & Music Soul Festival .
Out of the more than 2,000 people who applied to perform at this year’s festival, local artists such as rapper Luke Bar$ , funk/soul collective The American Symphony of Soul, rapper Red Shaydez , and the New England-based Brazilian dance troupe SambaViva made the cut.
Cliff Notez, a Dorchester native and rapper who will be performing at the festival, says that he’s thrilled to see local acts highlighted. In May, Notez and his artist collective HipStory hosted Boston Answering , a show of local hip-hop artists in response to popular music festival Boston Calling and what organizers described as a lack of representation for local artists from marginalized backgrounds in the area.
“There’s a lot of talent in the city of Boston, but not a lot of that talent gets to the national stage. I think BAMS is an example of the idea that more is more” when it comes to representation of diverse voices, Notez says.
The lineup also features a contingent of Berklee College of Music-trained artists, including Dalaun, ÁBI, and current student Safiya . Grammy-winning drummer and jazz musician Terri Lyne Carrington co-curated the selection from Berklee, where Carrington directs the Institute for Jazz and Gender Justice.
Grammy-nominated headliner Eric Roberson, a New Jersey native, says he’s excited to perform among many independent musicians on Saturday. “The Boston local scene is fed by independent artists,” Roberson says.
Roberson also looks forward to attending the family-friendly festival with his sons. BAMS Festival encourages families to BYOG — bring your own games — and settle in on lawn chairs or picnic blankets for the daylong event.
“A concert for all ages?” Roberson says. “We love that stuff.”