GOODFest: Bilal Unplugs to Find His Love

“When you strip away the outside clutter, you can see all the inside clutter that you still need to get rid of”

Editor’s note: As part of our ongoing editorial coverage of GOODFest, we’ll be chatting with an artist from each of our five shows about the intersections of music and activism as it pertains to them. Check out our complete GOODFest coverage here.

With a career spanning genres and decades and collaborations with luminaries Kendrick Lamar, Dr. Dre, and Erykah Badu, you might expect singer Bilal Sayeed Oliver, best known as Bilal, to have more of an assured swagger to him. Instead, the humble musician focuses inward in his search for further inspiration and leaves the distractions for the rest of us.

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GOODFest: Jon Boogz Will Keep Dancing ‘Til You Start Paying Attention

“We want to put ourselves in the same category of a Picasso, of a Basquiat, of a Van Gogh”

Photo by George Evan

Editor’s note: As part of our ongoing editorial coverage of GOODFest, we’ll be chatting with artists from each of our five shows about the intersections of music and activism as it pertains to them. Check out our complete GOODFest coverage here.

If ever there were someone up to the monumental challenge of demystifying the art of dance and packaging it in a palatable way for the masses, it’d be Jon Boogz.

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GOODFest: The Ella Baker Center and Why We Need Equality-Based Charities Now More Than Ever

“We want to have honest conversations about how our country has continuously prioritized and profited from shackles, walls, and jails in communities of color”

As much as we love putting on a kick-ass show, GOODFest is nothing without its causes. They’re fundamental to our mission of creating a music event that does more than simply give you a few hours of entertainment.

The world is in a state of constant turmoil and there are an unprecedented number of worthy non-profits that need your attention, time, and dollars. So why did we choose to partner with the ones we did? Rather than prattling on about it second-hand, we thought it best to give the charities themselves a soapbox here to explain directly to you why they’re so vital.

The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, one of our NPO partners for December 16th’s Bay Area GOODFest show, has spent the past two decades fighting systemic racism in policing, imprisonment, and other urban policies that disproportionately affect people of color in negative ways.

We asked them why the world so desperately needs equality-based charities these days. Here’s what they had to say.

“At the Ella Baker Center, we organize with black, brown, and low-income people to channel resources into the communities most harmed by policing and prisons. That work is more important now than ever.

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GOODFest: See The Experimental Musical Village Where Every House Is An Instrument

“We’d rather have something that holds up to fine art rather than appeals to the middle ground.”

Photo credit: Bryan Tarnowski

To see Gogol Bordello’s performance at The Music Box Village, tune in to goodfest.live for the livestream and follow us on Facebook here.

Whether manifesting as music, cuisine, or architecture, New Orleans has always been a city that improvises something remarkable out of a hodgepodge of available scrap ingredients. The Music Box Village—the setting for GOODFest’s second show—proudly shares these values of reclamation and rebuilding with its home city.

The village originated in 2010 as a creative solution to a dilapidated house in need of demolition. Wishing to honor the building’s revered status within the neighborhood, musician and manager Jay Pennington, along with fellow creative collaborators Delaney Martin, Taylor Shepard, and Swoon, salvaged what they could from the house and used those pieces to construct a number of little abodes that each also served as unique musical instruments.

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GOODFest: Preservation Hall Jazz Band Explains Why New Orleans Is The Most Important City In America

“New Orleans is this anomaly, this spiritual center, this backbone, the DNA of American music”

Editor’s note: As part of our ongoing editorial coverage of GOODFest, we’ll be chatting with an artist from each of our five shows about the intersections of music and activism as it pertains to them. Check out our complete GOODFest coverage here.

Ben Jaffe could easily audition to be the next Dos Equis man. His title alone, creative director and tuba player for Preservation Hall Jazz Band, most certainly qualifies him as The Most Interesting Man in the World.

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