For the past six years, The Organic Hip Hop Conference has become a leading voice in advocating healthy living through Hip Hop culture to the South Florida community. Just as Hip Hop as a culture and movement was founded under the principle of saving the lives of the youth in the streets of the South Bronx in the 1970s, the legacy continues today, as the message of Organic Hip Hop is oriented towards setting new qualitative standards in the ways that we think, eat and act as individuals, families and communities.
Since 2004, the breadth of the conference has expanded. It began as a lecture symposium coupled with a vegetarian banquet, conscientious entertainment and cultural venders at Florida International University’s Biscayne Bay. Since then, it has turned into an annual staple experience for the community filled with workshops, film screenings, award ceremonies and concerts. In recent years it has been held in key cultural South Florida locations; at the Miami Light Project’s Light Box near Wynnewood’s distinguished arts community (2008) and the historic African Cultural Arts Center in the heart of the Liberty City community (2009). The conference has attracted people of different genres who seek to promote Hip Hop as a culture and force that can positively transform lives. Past Organic Hip Hop events featured cultural and intellectual icon KRS One, Professor Griff of the famed Rap group Public Enemy, Queen Afua and Supa Nova Slom, Brother J (of X Clan), journalist Davey D, holistic dietician Dr. Laila O. Afrika and community leader Min. Rasul Muhammad.
The 7th Annual Organic Hip Hop Conference will take place on October 29 – 30, 2010. Unlike previous conferences, it will be a part of a larger national movement of collective responsibility among artists called the MIA (Music is Alive) Campaign. Congruently, the theme of this year’s conference will be “Building a National Movement of Responsibility.” Co-sponsoring the conference will be Difference Makers, Inc. Non-Profit Organization and the FIU African and African Diaspora Studies Graduate Students Association.
Day 1 of the conference (Friday, October 29) will be held at Florida International University’s Modesto Maidique Campus. From 9 am to 3 pm, both public and private school educators are invited to partake in workshops demonstrating how to incorporate the empowering voice of Hip Hop in day to day classroom activities. Workshop instructors include Organic Hip Hop Conference co-organizer Tony Muhammad, Hip Hop Chess Federation co-founder Adisa Banjoko, national recording artist behind the “Free the Jena 6” anthem Jasiri X. Smith, MIA Campaign founder Arian Muhammad AKA Poetess and PATH (Preserving, Archiving & Teaching Hip Hop History) founder Brimstone 127.
Workshop instructors will convene again at 7:30 pm for a panel discussion on the importance of “Building a National Movement of Responsibility” within Hip Hop. Immediately following the panel discussion there will be a live band local artist showcase featuring J Phonnix; Laguardia; Mecca AKA Grimo; Lip, Tongue and Ears founder Shamelle Jenkins; Kimani Kenyatta; Big Babatunde; Orion and Lox the Rippa. To attend please RSVP the AADS GSA by calling 305-348-4264.
Day 2 of the conference (Saturday, October 30) will be held at two locations. The first portion will be held at the historic African Heritage Cultural Arts Center in Liberty City. From 10 am to 2pm, youth as well as families are invited to participate in interactive workshops oriented towards healthy eating, thinking and living. Workshop topics include “A New Diet for the Hip Hop Generation,” “Kemetic Yoga 101,” “The Value of the Spoken Word” and “Chess and the Martial Arts.”
On Saturday evening, MIA Campaign organizers will gather at Catalyst for a “Build Session” with Miami Hip Hop community leaders for the purpose of discussing how to develop and expand educational and cultural programs both locally and nationally. Shortly following the “Build Session” attendees will engage in games of chess, checkers and dominos while local DJs spin smooth grooves and artists display their talents open mic style.
For more info, visit www.organichiphopevent.wordpress.com.