“King of Soul means to bear it all.”
The King of Soul of live performance event took place at Gallery 992 (@Gallery992atl), Atlanta, Ga this past Saturday, June 10th, 2016. The event was a lively one with over 60 people packed inside the doors of the Gallery. Live entertainment, drinks, catered food, and good conversation meant for a good night.
At the end of 2016, Taure Anwar (@Taureanwar) and Vici Royál (@ViciRoyal) decided it was time to team up and join forces provide to a platform for all artists—creative artists, musical artists, visual artists, photographers, videographers, bloggers—to showcase their creative talent. “There are a lot of people in the Atlanta area that are highly talented. There is a demand and need for them, but they may just not be connected,” said Anwar, Business Development Manager for UAM.
Vici, a Decatur native who has done The Early Show for the past two years, thought, with his artistic and musically creative background, teaming up with Taure, with his business-related background, was a good fit for business. So, they joined forces to push the culture.
Their goal? “To have a tour of Black musicians, no offense to other cultures, playing our music. A consistent Woodstock’esque’ type festival that can pay the acts,” said Vici.
United Artist Movement (@unitedartistmovement)was created, and the two began on working on different ways to impact the community through creativity and ingenuity. “We always want to give back. All of our work goes back to the community,” said Anwar.
Getting Back to Your Roots
When asked, “What does it mean to ‘Get Back to Your Roots,'” Anwar responded by saying:
“Everything is rooted to the music and that’s one way we are getting back to the way our ancestors did things. The men were the ones that told the stories. They were the ones that hold the family history. They would sit in circles with drums, guitars, or strings, and put something together and people from different areas would come to hear it. It was a true history. That’s what tonight’s show is. Every show is themed a different way. With Father’s Day coming up, ‘Kings of Soul’ is told from a predominantly male perspective, although there is one female performing tonight.”
Avery Floyd Jr. (@Averyfloydjr), 29, who was born and raised in Charlotte, NC, but now resides in Atlanta puts it another way:
“Where would we be, or how would the trunk of the tree or its leaves or the branch without the roots. If we are going to go anywhere in life or profession, you have to draw from the roots. You have to pay homage to those that came before you and have established the way. Alot of artists forget where they came from. Back in the day where there was no technology to hide behind. You had to flatfoot sing.”
Floyd attended the Berkley College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, where he quickly learned he is just a minnow in a sea of music.
His father had a huge impact on his life growing up. “I’m very fortunate to have the most supportive dad in the world,” said Floyd. He was never pressured to pursue athletics as he comes from a family that’s big on sports. His father was always supportive on whatever Avery wanted to do.
“Find what you want to do and stick to it.” He also taught him the importance of independence. Being that his father and mother had him when they were seventeen, it taught him that he could always find a way to take care of himself, “as long as you are creative, learn how to maintain a good reputation, and work hard, then you can have whatever you want. It’s there.”
David Crawford, 21, is the Editor-In-Chief at Next Great American Poet. He is a junior Biology/Pre-Med major at Moorehouse College. NGA is a 501c3 that helps fund high school scholars for poetry slams.
What got him started? In high school, his Language Arts teacher liked a poem he did and invited him to read at Unleash Pens—a before hours poetic program. Later that year he recited a poem of his in front of his senior class. The (congratulatory) feeling stuck with him ever since.
A mile-a-minute does not do Crawford justice when performed his set that night at Gallery 992. He got hung up at the end and forgot the very last line of his poem.
“It’s a feeling of extreme butterflies. You came in there so prepared, you know all the words so you are prepared to do it. And, right at the end, you turn blank. The lights went right off.”
Its frustrating to him but Crawford is confident the next time he performs, he will do it 10x better than his last.
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