August 2rd – 5th, 2018, The Peace Poets performed at the Arise Music Festival at the Sunrise Ranch in Loveland, Colorado.
10,000+ folks were present for the gathering on the sacred ancestral grounds of the Ute People.
Part of the intention f0r the Arise Music Festival was to ground ourselves in the idea that as our collective consciousness continues to awaken, we arise!
This independent, family-run festival attempts to leave no trace of the event behind to respect, honor, and care for the land in a more accountable way. Arise did not have any plastic bottles for sale, plenty of refillable potable water stations, and recycling bins throughout the grounds. The festival also plants a tree for every ticket sold.
Families were encouraged to attend by providing free entry for all young people under 12 years of age, and hosted an activities-filled Rainbow Lightning Children’s Village boasting a performance stage, face and body paint, costumes including butterfly wings, children-sized spin balls and all kinds of entertainment!
Passerby’s commented that the Children’s Village had to be a dream for parents who wanted to enjoy the festival, knowing they could bring their children and expose them to so many enriching activities, music, art, and nature!
On Saturday, Aug 4th, The Peace Poets opened their performance with call and responses to gather the energy and powerful voices of the people. The drumming of BombaYo’s Doctor Drum called upon the ancestral rhythms of resistance and love, and called everyone present to get into their bodies and onto the dance floor.
The Peace Poets wove a narrative through rap music and Spoken Word poetry about their most recent journeys resisting the separation of families at the border in San Diego, Ca. with MiJente, fighting to protect the land and water, and organizing for healing and community empowerment.
The Peace Poets celebrated in the spirit of the griots and beatboxed to accompany the foundation laid by Dr. Drum, and spoke out on topics including gentrification, police brutality, and our constant struggle for collective liberation.
The Peace Poets had the honor of having Xiuhtezcatl join them on stage and drop a verse for their Movement Music song, Shaking Ground.
Later that evening, The Peace Poets, La Marea and Living Legends, joined emcee and graphic novelist of The Burning Metronome, R. Alan Brooks, for the Hip-Hop: Words That Matter panel.
R. Alan Brooks emceed the conversation, as panelist deconstructed the importance and role of art in their lives, as tools for transformation, resistance, and speaking truth to power.
La Marea who wore a luchador mask, spoke on the patriarcal relationship of power that exists between the hyper invisibilization and underrepresentation of women of color and the violences that systematically continues to exploit and oppress indigenous women, black and brown women, queer women, and trans women.
The Last Emcee shared some thoughts below, and shortly after an incredible cypher ensued with verses, freestyles, and beatboxing from R. Alan Brooks, The Last Emcee, La Marea, and Living Legends.
The cleansing, and healing rains from a few beautiful and short thunderstorms graced us and called for some workshops to be canceled for safety concerns. The Peace Poets were not able to share their workshop, Harmonizing Organizing, designed for participants to tap into the power of song writing and music making for social justice and liberation.
Sunday, Aug 5th, The Peace Poets facilitated The Connectors, a Spoken Word poetry workshop focused on seeing each other and our struggle, hearing the land, and envisioning the world that we want our future generations to rise to.
Before heading out to Denver, Co. to meet with our Flobots family, the last act we caught was by La Marea.
La Marea created a beautiful ceremony bumping high-energy Hip Hop to truth telling lyricism over beautiful harmonies and flows that had everybody in the Star Water Stage dancing and singing! Check her below:
We can’t wait to rock again with you at ARISE 2019!