On Sunday night it was my pleasure to host an event for Oxjam, a live music spin off from Oxfam. There were 4 different venues around Womanby Street in Cardiff being used but we were based in Revs (Revolution) with a bunch of Hip-hop acts put together alongside Associated Minds, Starving Artists and Higher Learning.
Revs is definitely not the first venue you might think of for such a thing, especially as the venue decided to put everything downstairs you had all the regular drinkers in too. Still, it seemed to work really well and everyone who stayed (we lost a fair amount of regular drinkers) had a great time. Here’s a mini guided tour to the night.
First up was Louis Vines, who had the hardest job of jumping up first and breaking the ice. He stuck to a fairly accessible set that complimented the late summer evening and didn’t scare too many people. That vibe actually suited him really well but you could tell he was dying to pick up the pace of it just a bit.
The next fellas up were Connections. They had a bit of a harder job with their tunes, as you could tell from the reaction Oort Kuiper got from his question to the crowd “So how many people like Science?” I’m not sure Revs has a high attendance of scientific types to be honest. Other questions received similar responses, “How many people have got their minds locked on?” or “How many people know their periodic tables?” Still you get the feeling that Oort was half expecting the challenge and it didn’t seem to phase him in the slightest, both him and Planet Mars gave a wicked performance with Risk One on beat duty.
If hearing the periodic tables rapped in Revs seemed unexpected, I never thought I’d hear the day that ‘Genik Riddim’ was performed in there but it was the opening tracks from Joe Blow + Skamma up next. They dropped a couple of Dubstep tracks before jumping into some heavy Drum & Bass track that shook up the remaining crowd into skanking out a bit then finished with a new Hip-hop tune from their forthcoming Mixtape (keep an eye out for that one).
DJ duty was undertaken by Vito first but then Ruffstylz jumped up on the decks and hit is straight away with Fu Schnickens ‘Breakdown’, a track that I’d all but forgotten, in fact I’ve not even heard the whole of that album, despite ‘F.U. Don’t Take It Personal’ before it being one of my all time favourites. This set the B Boys off who stuck with him through a journey that also incorporated Major Lazer ‘Hold The Line’ and Cloud 9’s classic Moving Shadow track ‘You Got Me Burning Up’
Flow Of Thought were the next rappers to jump on the mic. Great raw Cardiff Hip-hop rhymes from Smithy Blade and Festa with some funky as hell beats to back them up which seemed to warm the crowd back up and get everybody bubbling nicely in time for Beatbox Fozzy who never ceases to catch me with his skills, despite having seen more than my fair share of great beatboxing in the past. He was jamming out with some Hip-hop for a while then slipped in a stunning new adaptation of Burt Bacharach’s ‘The Look Of Love before smashing it with his Dubstep selection.
Afro Cluster finished off the proceedings with a wicked freestyle Jam session with Oort Kuiper, Louis Vines, Spraggy and a couple of others taking over rhyme duty once Skunkadelic’s already fading voice began to suffer. We also managed to auction off 2 pieces of artwork courtesy of Spar Warz and raised over £100 there so all in all a great day and I didn’t even need to get my chest waxed this time! (see video on CAI Post).
For anyone who couldn’t make it down, don’t worry you can still give money to Oxjam online here.