RECAP: Dungeon Family, Erykah Badu, Ice Cube & More Rock ATL At ONE Musicfest 2016 (VIDEOS)


The 2016 edition of the ONE Musicfest was an impressive mixture of legendary acts and talented new voices of Hip Hop and R&B. 20,000 music fans poured into Atlanta’s Lakewood Amphitheatre and withstood 90° heat to experience over a dozen performances.

Early attendees started their day by checking out artists-on-the-rise Jarren Benton, Nick Grant, Matt Citron, and Tulani. The rest of the day was loaded with crowd-pleasing sets from celebrated stars on the ZEUS and HERCULES stages.

The tunes served as the soundtrack for an event that also provided opportunities to purchase food, clothes, artwork, and other items. There were even games available and individuals registering citizens to vote.

“So many times you turn on the news, and Hip Hop is getting a bad rap. But when you walk onto the field of ONE Musicfest, it gives you what you know about your culture, your music, and your people,” Jason Carter, the festival’s founder, told in July. “It’s a great representation of our culture and the way we should be presented.”

Here are a few highlights from the marquee performers at ONE Musicfest 2016.

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Motown vocalist BJ The Chicago Kid made sure the crowd knew he had love for old school R&B. In addition to running through cuts from his In My Mind album, BJ’s set included a nod to “I Can’t Stand The Rain” and a cover of D’Angelo’s “Send It On.” The singer-songwriter later displayed his Hip Hop credentials by performing his parts from collaborations with Kendrick Lamar, Chance The Rapper, Joey Bada$$, and Schoolboy Q.


“Yes lawd!” Anderson .Paak was on 10 as he and The Free Nationals band raised the intensity level at Lakewood. Besides releasing his critically acclaimed Malibu album and signing with Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label, Paak had another personal reason to turn up at OMF. The Oxnard, California native’s mother was in the audience to watch her son show his impressive abilities behind the mic and behind the drums.


Grammy-nominated songstress Jazmine Sullivan took an extended hiatus between 2010’s Love Me Back and 2015’s Reality Show. It was clear on Saturday that a good number of her fans did not jump ship during those five years. Sullivan’s “Bust Your Windows” was met with a sea of ladies singing along to the hit single about what could happen when a woman is scorned.


R&B, Rock, Soul, and Blues – the ONE Musicfest congregation was blessed to hear all those great genres during a single set. Gary Clark Jr. was in full rocker mode as the Texan shredded his different colored guitars on “Bright Lights,” “Next Door Neighbor Blues,” and “Our Love.” Nodding heads confirmed Clark’s electric riffs and tales of heartache resonated with many of the people in attendance.


New York was properly represented in Atlanta this weekend with A$AP Ferg on the bill, but even the Harlemite had to admit the reception he received in Georgia’s capital has him considering buying a house in the A. The Trap Lord still kept it NY by dedicating songs to the late A$AP Yams and sharing his stage time with Marty Baller.


The legends portion of OMF began with Brooklyn’s Busta Rhymes. The Conglomerate leader demonstrated his storied stage presence with verses from “I Know What You Want,” “Who Hah!!,” “Scenario,” and “Look At Me Now.” And of course, Busta’s longtime right-hand man Spliff Starr was present for his hype-man duties.


The South met the West thanks to Ice Cube. The California-born entertainer had to remind folks he is not just the guy from the Barbershop movies or the Coors Light commercials. As a Hip Hop G.O.A.T. contender, Cube tapped back into his emcee energy in order to tell the haters to “Go To Church” if you’re scared and “Check Yo Self” if you don’t think he can still control the microphone.


Even though Erykah Badu’s set started over 25 minutes later than scheduled, it didn’t seem to matter to the crowd. The thousands of people waiting for Ms. Badu showered the Queen Of Neo-Soul with immense affection when she finally stepped in front of them. And there’s no confusion why. Badu gave the audience what they came for by belting out beloved songs such as “Out My Mind, Just In Time,” “On & On,” and “…& On.”


If there was any dispute whether the Dungeon Family is considered royalty in Atlanta, doubters would only have had to view the torrent of bodies rushing to get as close to the stage as possible when their set began at ONE Musicfest. Law enforcement had to be called in to usher out the hundreds of people lining the aisles.

It may have been a fire hazard, but it’s understandable why ATLiens were willing to endure the barely-able-to-move congestion to watch Organized Noize, OutKast, Goodie Mob, Killer Mike, Cool Breeze, Witchdoctor, Backbone, Big Rube, Sleepy Brown, and Slimm Calhoun spit rhymes together. Who knows when it will happen again?

The Dungeon Family reunion was the highly anticipated main event of ONE Musicfest 2016. The respected Hip Hop collective brought out some other ATL icons to make the evening even more special.

Atlanta rap pioneer Kilo Ali made an appearance. A-town delegates Bone Crusher and T.I. accompanied Killer Mike to shock the amphitheater with “Never Scared.”

Later Erykah Badu returned to assist André 3000, Big Boi, Cee Lo Green, and Big Rube for the OutKast classic “Liberation.” The DF crew closed out the monumental homecoming with Kast’s “Gangsta Sh-t.”

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