afro-latino-festival-2015 afro-latino-festival-2015
Instagram

How Afro-Latino Festival Is Empowering A Rich & Diverse Community

It's a brown thing, baby… and black IS beautiful. 

The 3rd Annual Afro-Latino Festival could not have come at a better time. Amid national unrest and sweeping racial tension, the 3-day event (July 10-12) is bringing together artists, scholars and performers to affirm and celebrate Afro-Latino culture. Afro-Boricuas, Dominicans and many others across the Caribbean community will gather at panel discussions, documentaries, musical performances, dance workshops and art exhibits throughout New York City.

READ: Poetic Justice: First Latino Poet Laureate Announced

In a time where the Latino ethnic and racial identity continues to shift, it is important to not only recognize but educate on its rich and multi-layered heritage. Here's how the organizers are doing just that, and so much more…

It serves as a voice for the voiceless:
"We look at Afro-Latinos as a coalition community," founder Mai-Elka Prado told NBC. "We have a lot of unique issues, from lack of representation in the media to profiling to immigration. We want the festival to be a place where people can be heard and seen, in an authentic way. Our concerns - whether it is our cultural heritage, our economic situation, political issues - are all fundamental and deserve a platform."

It aims to celebrate the essence of Afrolatinidad:
"Many of our (Latin) cultures have not necessarily celebrated our African roots, said New York State Assemblymember Robert J. Rodriguez. "Events like this recognize our heritage, and the contributions to our identity that come from both sides of our heritage."

READ: Latinos In Hip-Hop (Part 2): From Underground To Mainstream

It is concerned with the multiplicity of the Afro-Latino experience:
"The issues addressed when you say you are Afro-Latino are multiple and complex," explained author and professor Dr. Marta Moreno Vega, who believes the Census undercounts Afro-Latinos because the questions are culturally insensitive. "In Latin America, people have come up with all these terms - café con leche, como greko, mulata - all to avoid saying that they are Black. And then people come to the U.S. and identify as Puerto Rican or Dominican or Mexican - the African identity seems to be lost, in part to cultural pressures."

From the Web

More on Vibe

Nick Rice

25 Hip-Hop Albums By Bomb Womxn Of 2018

The female voice in hip-hop has always been present whether we've noticed it or not. The late Sylvia Robinson birthed the hip-hop music industry with the formation of Sugar Hill Records (and fostering "Rapper's Delight"), Roxanne Shante's 55 lyrical responses to fellow rappers were the first diss tracks and Missy Elliott's bold and striking music and visuals inspired men and women in the game to step outside of their comfort zones.

These pillars and many more have allowed the next generation of emcees to be unapologetically brash, truthful and confident in their music. Cardi B's Invasion of Privacy and Nicki Minaj's Queen might've been the most mainstream albums by womxn in rap this year, but there was a long list of creatives who brought the noise like Rico Nasty, Tierra Whack, Noname and Bbymutha. Blame laziness or the heavy onslaught of music hitting streaming sites this year, but many of the artists on this list have hibernated under the radar for far too long.

VIBE decided to switch things up but also highlighting rap albums by womxn who came strong in their respectively debut albums, mixtapes, EPs. We also had to give props to those who dropped standout singles, leaving us wanting more.

READ MORE: 15 R&B Songs We Obsessed Over Most In 2018

Continue Reading
VIBE / Nick Rice

10 Most Important Hip-Hop Artists Of 2018

We’ve reached another end to an eventful year in hip-hop. From rap beefs to new music releases and milestones, 2018 has been forged in the history books as a year to remember. But more important than the events that happened over the span of 12 months are the people who made them happen.

While fans received a large dose of music from our favorite artists and celebrated some of the most iconic album anniversaries, there are a few names that stood out as the culture pushers, sh*t starters, and all-around most significant artists of the year.

For your enjoyment, VIBE compiled a list of the top 10 most important hip-hop artists of 2018 based on a series of qualifications: 1) public actions - good, bad, and ugly; 2) music releases; 3) philanthropic/humanitarian work; and 4) trending moments.

Be clear: This list isn’t about the most influential, the most talented, who had the best music or tours. While we are commemorating artists for the work they’ve contributed to this year’s music cycle, we’re looking beyond that and evaluating how these particular artists have shaped conversations and pushed hip-hop culture forward.

READ MORE: 15 R&B Songs We Obsessed Over Most In 2018

Continue Reading
VIBE / Nick Rice

15 R&B Songs We Obsessed Over Most In 2018

Hip-hop may have become the Nielsen Music-declared most dominant music genre, but let's not overlook the strides R&B (including all its many sub-genres and cousin genres) have taken on the airwaves and within the culture in this year alone.

While persistent naysayers keep peddling the tired argument that "R&B is dead," the most recent news cycle has proven the exact opposite, as talks of a supposed King of R&B dominated discussions both on- and offline. Jacquees' lofty declaration notwithstanding, there's no denying that there are ample songs swimming around the 'Net from talented vocalists killing it within the genre.

For those looking to satiate rhythm and blues earworms—and in no particular order—VIBE compiled a list of the 15 bonafide R&B songs of 2018 (or at least ones that fall within the genre's orbit) that pulled us into our feelings each and every time we pressed play.

READ MORE: Let Jacquees Tell It, He’s The Jodeci Of This R&B Game

Continue Reading

Top Stories