This film is the story of a cultural legend as told by the innovators of an important, and in some cases overlooked, era in Black culture. Spanning the late 1980′s through to the early 2000′s, this story goes deep into the fabric of soul music, it’s definitions, it’s pioneers, it’s offspring, it’s movements, the challenges with the “mainstream” industry and the evolution of the FunkJazz Kafé, a music and arts movement born of Atlanta’s diverse musical heritage.
The film covers the decade when Atlanta’s underground music scene became established on the world stage and a new generation of soul singers and musicians emerged.
The FunkJazz Kafé is an authentic sixteen-year-old cultural arts brand with a loyal consumer/ fan base. Established in 1994 as a vehicle to bring attention to alternative, “special interests” music and creative arts. FJK has since then set the bar, changing the face of cultural arts and multi-media events throughout the country. Justly earning the accolade “Best Performance Arts Festival” by Vibe Magazine and voted “Best Multimedia Event” by Creative Loafing, The FunkJazz Kafé creates one of the most anticipated, original multimedia / cultural arts festivals in America. The FunkJazz Kafé is a meeting of the minds, a gathering of local, national, and internationally acclaimed artists who blend their unique talents to inspire, satisfy the senses and stimulate the mind. Previous performers include Jill Scott, Public Enemy, Jamie Foxx, Erykah Badu, Outkast, India.Arie, Angie Stone, Doug E. Fresh, MC Lyte, Loose Ends, Talib Kwali, Bilal, Meshell Ndegeocello, Van Hunt and Common just to name a few.
The FunkJazz Kafé is now identified as a platform for patrons to interact with what’s new in modern music culture as well as a variety of visual art forms. The FunkJazz Kafé owes it’s success not just to making lasting impressions and the consistent surprise of quality performance artists, but to the movement created by unapologetically blending intellectual, physical and even political expression under one banner of entertainment.
Visual insight to the legendary, 14 year old, special event phenomenon. This arts and music festival is like no other. This presentation is short but loaded with friends of FunkJazz Kafé® explaining what the program, vibe and experience is about (Doug E. Fresh, Jamie Foxx, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Caron Wheeler, Common, Van Hunt, Chuck D./Public Enemy, Omar, Dawn Robinson, N’dambi, Cee Lo, Lil’ John Roberts, Donnie, Talib Kweli, Andre 3000, Lil’ Louis, Dionne Farris, Eric Roberson, MC Lyte, Bilal, Marsha Ambrosius/Floetry, Janelle Monae, Meshell Ndegeocello, India Arie, Angie Stone and M-1/Dead Prez).
The documentary was shown at the Charles H. Wright Museum Of African American History on July 28, 2012. The film was also recently screened at the First Annual Blackstar Film Festival in Philadelphia. It will be screened again in Philly on Saturday, August 4th, 2012 at the International House at 8pm. The International House is located at 3701 Chestnut Street. There will be a conversation with soul artist, Res and the director, Steve Zegans, about the documentary on Res before ending around 7:45pm. A discussion with Director, Writer, Producer Jason Orr and soul artist/cast member, Lady Alma will follow the screening.
Here is an interesting write up at Creative Loafing