This year's Manchester Earth Day Celebration is shaping up to be one of the biggest events in NHCC history. Headlining the day's events will be The Apostles, a well established underground hip-hop duo from Brooklyn, NY. With their politically charged lyrics and soulful sound, MC's Griot and Megawatt will look to connect Saturday's crowd with city-life and environmental action. The Bear Brook Observer reached out to the group, to find out a little bit more about their roots, life as a musician and their anticipation of the upcoming show:
Bear Brook Observer: How long have you been making music together? How did you guys get started?
Griot: We've been making music together since 2000. Individually we've been doing it our whole life. I was banging out rhythms in the womb.
BBO: When did you discover your love for hip-hop music?
Megawatt: I did not discover my love for Hip-Hop, I was injected by two older brothers who were DJ's in the Bronx during the late 70's and 80's. Believe me when I say I am Hip Hop.
G: My pops and uncles are conga players, so I grew up listening to them play. My parents also listened to Jimmy Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Al Green, Bob Marley... I first really started listening and understanding the hip hop around 87-88 listening to LL Cool J, KRS-One, Rakim and Big Daddy Kane.
BBO: How would you describe your sound?
M: Grown Folks Hip Hop is the term we use to describe our music. Hip Hop that is fun and entertaining but does not ignore our responsibilities as adults.
BBO: What is the best part about the work that you do? What about your greatest struggle in being an artist?
G: The best part is the ability to create whatever I'm feeling. My music is a reflection of my personality. What I'm thinking. "What's going on in that wild head of mine?" It's great to be able to think about something or feel something and then bring it to life with a song. The illest is when other people understand what I was thinking when they hear my songs. The greatest struggle is also the reason the music sounds good...Being able to make a living doing what I love. Creating music: The industry is rough right now. Labels don't want to bring artist up from the ground they want to have ready made and popular products before they even deal with you. Forget them. We stayin' independent!
BBO: What is something that you would really like people to know about your music?
M: Twice per month (on the 1st and the 15th) at http://www.apostleshiphop.com. We give away free music to our fan list. We call it THE HIP HOP BAIL OUT PLAN. Despite the recession we all still need good music in our life and the record labels and radio stations have forgotten what that sounds like.
Come to apostleshiphop.com and sign our email list to start receiving your BAIL OUT music.
BBO: How does it feel to be signed on to headline an event like Earth Day at Manchester?
G: It's definitely an honor to be the headline. We've done shows world wide and have rocked many a crowd. It's always a good feeling when people recognize your talent. And an event like Earth Day that has global importance...it's great to be able to use our music to bring people together for an event such as this.
M: It is flattering and humbling to be a part of an event like this. I am especially excited about the important theme, care for our planet and the location. I need a break from the big city life. Thanks much Manchester for having us.
BBO: Hip-hop is mostly recognized as a branch of urban culture. What kind of connections do you notice between it and environmentalism?
M: The more politicized Hip Hop music shares a common enemy with environmentalists, and that enemy is the status quo and its defenders; those that are satisfied with, or in some cases creators of, the current state of affairs in this country and worldwide. Steps need to be taken to ensure that the next generation will have a healthier planet (physically, psychologically and spiritually).
G: Well hip hop is grassroots music. It came from the streets from people who had nothing. It didn't need anything but 2 turntables and a microphone. It was able to create something from nothing.
BBO: Do you do anything in your daily life or musical life to be eco-minded?
G: Personally I use my phone to type lyrics instead of paper. I'm going green. I also recycle and I'm very tree friendly.