The 12th annual Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival returns to Trinity College on April 7-9, 2017.
The theme for 2017 is “U.N.I.T.Y.: Unifying Gender, Race and Class Through Hip-Hop” and will feature three days of lectures, films, workshops and panel discussions. Highlighting the event will be spoken word events, the regional talent showcase, the Friday night b-boy/b-girl battle and hip hop dance event, and the main concert on Saturday night, April 8th. Check back for the full schedule for the most up to date details.
Prince Paul – DJ, producer, man of mystery, crime fighter and people’s champion, hip hop skit inventor, producer of three Grammy award winning albums and nominations,”Best Producer of the Year” 1990 New York music awards in addition to numerous awards, gold and platinum records. Paul considers himself quiet, quirky and humble
“I didnt see this coming… I thought I was going to be a postman.” Paul was born in Queens, New York, raised in Amityville, Long island. Paul started DJing at the age of 10, joinging his first crew (Eveready Crew) in the 6th grade . He went on to join Newkirk (aka Kid Wonder), Mic Teelux and Sugar Ray to form The Soul Brothers in the early eighties. Paul then went on to join Stetsasonic in 1984, becoming their DJ and releasing their first single “Just
Say Stet” on Tommy Boy rRecords in 1985 . Paul battled in the New Music Seminar DJ Battle for World Supremacy in 1986 and went to the semi-finals.
Stetsasonic went on to record three albums: On Fire , In Full Gear, and Blood Sweat and No Tears. From that point, Paul was seasoned in record making and production. Paul went on to produce pioneering hip hip group De La Soul starting with their single “Plug Tunin'” 1987/88 , and their second single “Potholes in My Lawn” leading to the album 3ft High and Rising in 1989.
Paul states, “I loved working with De La. It gave me a chance to be the silly kid I was and to experiment musically.” Paul is credited with inventing the “hip hop skit” – originally known as “bugg out pieces”. The Grammy nominated 3 ft High and Rising went beyond conventional rap albums with its own sound, culture and style. Paul continued to work with De La and produced De la Soul is Dead and Bahloon Mind State. During that time, Paul also produced “Gas Face” by 3rd Bass, and songs for Big daddy Kane, Queen Latifah, Mc Lyte, Boogie Down Productions, The Jaz and Jay-Z , Groove B Chill , Slick Rick , The 7A3, Nikki D, Vernon Reid… the list goes on and on. He did remixes for The Beastie Boys, Cypress Hill, Living Color, Fine Young Cannibals, Peter Wolf, and many more.
In 1990, Paul started his own label – Dew Doo Man Records – under Def Jam’s Rush Associated Labels (RAL). The label only spawned one single release by Resident Alien and an unreleased album by Mic Teelux. After being accepted then rejected by the music business, Paul put together the Gravediggas in 1991 with The Rza (Wu-Tang Clan), Poetic and Fruitkwan (formerly of Stetsasonic) and renamed themselves The Undertakes (Paul), The RZArector, The Grym Reaper (Poetic) and The Gatekeeper (Fruitkwon). The group banded together as “industry rejects” and made a demo that circulated for more than a year with no results. During that time, Rza released Wu-Tang Clan independently with great results. After continuous rejection, the group finally was offered a deal with Gee Street Records in 1992, releasing 6 ft Deep which later became a critically acclaimed cult classic.
Paul went on to produce Psychoanalysis on Wordsound in 1996 which Paul described as “a bunch of rejected songs that will surely end my career”. Surprisingly, the album caught the attention and ears of many and pushed Paul’s career even more. Paul then signed new record deal with Tommy Boy and took an offer to produce Chris Rock’s three
Grammy award winning albums: Roll with the New, Bigger and Blacker (No Sex in the
Champagne Room) and Never Scared (and the score for “Pooty Tang” and the music for the Chris Rock Show).
Paul followed that with another solo album, A Prince Among Thieves which was hip hop’s first movie on wax/Hip Hopera. In 1999, Prince Paul teamed up with Dan the Automator to create Handsomeboy Modeling School, renaming himself Chest Rockwell for the critically acclaimed “So…How’s Your Girl?” and “White People”.
Paul continues to spins music all around the world showing he can still still “rock a party!” – touring as a solo act, with De La Soul and various other groups. Paul briefly worked with XM satillite radio producing and hosting his own show “The Illoutshow on Rhyme 65 ” in 2006 which spawned a huge following. Unfortunately, Paul retired the show after one season while XM restructured its format.
Some of Paul’s upcoming releases this year are “BrookZill!” with Ladybug Mecca, Rodrigo Brandau , and Newkirk And “Super Black” with Sacha Jenkins of Ego Trip and Rapper / Drummer J Zone . You can also see Prince Paul play the role of “The Bootlegger” On VH1’s original movie “The Breaks”.
Once asked “What has been your greatest project?” Paul replied, “I have yet to do it.” On that note, Paul continues to push his creativity into the future .
“In my freshly landed, just got off the boat enthusiasm for living in Africa, I tried to blend, to melt, homogenize, disappear, erase the essence of what made me who I was and am, an African, who grew up in, and was molded by, the hoods of America. I almost lost myself self”, Charlotte O’Neal, aka Mama C, booms out in her rich, velvet voice. This poeticism is imbued in every aspect of her life, as she manages to tackle her African-American identity and exile with rare eloquence and insight.
As a teenager living in the tinder box that was Kansas during the Civil Rights Movement, she ran away from home and joined the Panthers. But shortly afterwards, as the city exploded in violence, she and her new husband had to leave. As he explains, “They had police stationed outside our houses, we were under constant surveillance and I said to Charlotte, we won’t live much longer.”
Now living in Tanzania they run a home for extremely disadvantaged children and Mama C continues to make her art and explore her complex relationship with Africa and her homeland. “I had brothers and sisters come from the states that tell me Mama C, you’re free to do that because you’re not under this constant pressure of racism that we are living in the west.” She explains how the feeling in Africa is so different to the world she grew up in, “there wasn’t a shield up that you had to constantly have wrapped around you when you’re in the west”. She speaks of how the perspective of exile has completely changed her life and outlook, “You know being here, living here in Africa but also looking at myself as a part of the international community, as a part of the global family, has really freed my spirit”. A true revolutionary and trailblazer,her words speak to a remarkable universal vision of what society should be: “Tribalism, no! Tribal wisdom is what we want. Peace, love and unity.”
Kool Koor is a New York-born artist now based in Brussels, who is considered as one of the original graffiti pioneers of the NYC scene. Together with his friend Rammellzee and other artists like A-One, Quik, Dondi White, Crash and Futura he stood at the basis of the New York Graffiti Street Art Movement.
Born as Charles Hargrove in 1963, he grew up surrounded by such artists as A-One and Toxic who lived in the same neighborhood in the South Bronx. Kool Koor attended the Art and Design School in Midtown, causing him to travel everyday on his commute to and from school, and gained him an access to the world of subway trains. In that period, the artist began his street career, writing tags on the subway trains and throughout the urban landscape. Kool and his fellow artists Rammellzee, A-One and others were some of the first to completely diverge from classic Graffiti Art, pushing the boundaries of their work to transform urban scrawl into something completely innovative in the artistic scene. Through collaborative and individual works on the trains, Kool Koor brought the South Bronx style to downtown Manhattan at venues such as Fashion Moda, the first gallery that will focus on the Bronx artists.
Known for his space-age-inspired works, which range from surreal scenes to intricate works of abstraction, Kool Koor’s style is unique and recognizable. ‘I see my twisting structures, with their never ending labyrinths and formations a direct result of perfect coexistence’, the artist states. Kool Koor’s works are featured by contrasting areas of extension and compression within the canvas.
Against almost monochromatic backdrop plane there appear extensively detailed hieroglyphs consisting of splines, circles, angles, lines, wheels, arches. Taken individually, they resemble urban and architectural elements – highways and crossroads, bridges, peaks of skyscrapers and facades of buildings.
Since 1979 he works outside the graffiti-art scene as well, producing paintings, drawings, site specific pieces and illustrations. Kool also ventured into music and acting industries.
From tags in the streets to shows in prestigious galleries and museums, Kool Koor had numerous solo and group exhibition in Belgium, France, Luxemburg, Poland, Germany, Africa and the USA. His works are included in different private and museum collections like The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York, Musee des Beaux-Arts in Mons in Belgium, The Groninger Museum, Galleria Communale d’Arte Moderna in Bologna and Herbert and Leonore Schorr Collection.
Kool Koor is currently living and working in Brussels.
Sina A. Nitzsche is a researcher and instructor at the Department of American Studies at TD Dortmund University, Germany. In the academic year 2011-12 she was a Halle Foundation Visiting Scholar at Oglethorpe University, Atlanta, USA. She is the co-editor of Hip-Hop in Europe: Cultural Identities and Transnational Flows (2013) and Breaking the Panel! Comics as a Medium (2015). Her research interests are at the intersection of Cultural Studies, Media Studies, and Urban Studies with a particular emphasis on popular culture, hip-hop studies, urban decline, and The Bronx.
Dr. Meredith Schweig is Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at Emory University. Her research explores 20th- and 21st-century music of East Asia, with particular emphasis on popular song, narrativity, and cultural politics in the Chinese-speaking world. Currently at work on a book about Taiwan’s rap scene, Schweig has received fellowships from the Asian Cultural Council, Whiting Foundation, Fulbright-Hays, and the Fairbank Center for East Asian Research at Harvard. Her article “Hoklo Hip-Hop: Resignifying Rap as Local Narrative Tradition in Taiwan,” published in CHINOPERL: Journal of Chinese Oral and Performing Literature, won the 2015 Rulan Chao Pian Prize from the Association for Chinese Music Research.
Kendra Salois is an ethnomusicologist (Ph.D. UC Berkeley, 2013) whose work lies at the intersection of religious and national belonging, popular musicking, and transnational markets. Her research interests include Afro-diasporic popular musics in the Middle East and North Africa, North African popular musics, trans-Saharan musical connections, music and diplomacy, citizenship, labor, and neoliberalism. Her current book project, based on ethnographic research undertaken between 2007-2015, explores the relationships between Moroccan hip hop aesthetics, practitioners’ ethics, and changing conceptions of citizenship in the context of thirty years of economic neoliberalization in Morocco. In 2015, she was awarded the Saharan Crossroads Fellowship to study musical and institutional connections between hip hop festivals in North and West Africa. Her work appears in Anthropological Quarterly, the Journal of Popular Music Studies, The New Inquiry, and elsewhere, including the edited volumes Music and Diplomacy from the Early Modern Era to the Present (2014) and Islam and Popular Culture (April 2016). Prior to joining the Department of Performing Arts at AU, she was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Sergey earned his PhD in Cultural Studies at State Pedagogical University in Moscow in 2012, focusing on hip hop culture in Russia. He is currently the head of the Youth Practices Laboratory for the State Library in Moscow as well as the founder of Daexit, a non-governmental organization working with disenfranchised youth through hip hop. He has spoken about Russian hip hop at numerous conferences throughout Europe and has published a dozen papers encompassing topics from gender issues, education, graffiti and hip hop history.
Originally a bass guitarist in the rock bands Otragenie and Vasyas, Sergey transitioned into DJing and hip hop production in 2005.
By 2010, he had developed his skills as an MC and spoken word artist (artist name Grand Pa P), founding the music label Daexit and promoting artists from underground hip hop, funk and jazz. He performed with group Quiet Underground for several years before moving into more experimental poetry and electronic music projects such as spoken word/hip hop group Poetronic.
Manny Faces is an award-winning new media journalist and digital strategist based in the New York area. He is the founder and executive director of The Center for Hip-Hop Advocacy, a think-tank styled advocacy group working to improve the public’s perception of hip-hop music and culture. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Birthplace Magazine, an acclaimed online entertainment and lifestyle destination focusing on hip-hop music and culture in the New York metropolitan area.
Barbara Franz (Ph.D. Syracuse University) is Professor of Political Science. Her research interests juxtapose the phenomenon of mass migrations and refugee movements and what they mean for the stability of nations, the increasing potential of culture clashes within societies, and the root causes of migration movements, violence, terror, and genocide, as recently seen in Rwanda, Bosnia and Syria. In the aftermath of September 11, 2011, Dr. Franz turned her research interests toward security studies, seeking to delineate the future of migrant and refugee policies within the new security regimes in the U.S. and Europe, specifically focusing on the criminalization and marginalization of migrants in the post-Cold War era, refugees’ acclimatization methods within host societies, and gender and feminist perspectives in immigration and refugee studies. Her most recent book Immigrant Youth, Hip Hop and Online Games: Alternative Approaches to the Incorporation of Working-class and Second Generation Migrant Teens (2015) has been published by Lexington Press. Her articles have appeared in such journals as International Studies Perspectives, New Political Science, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, European Journal of Women Studies, Feminist Review, AWR Bulletin, and the e-journal borderlands. Dr. Franz teaches Global Politics, U.S. Foreign and Security Policy, Nationalism in World Politics, Sex & Politics, Gender, War and Peace and Politics of Global Migration as well as other Political Science courses at Rider.