Rappers and DJs Honor Influential Composers During New Concert Series

AllHipHop Staff

A new take on the evolution of Hip-Hop will be explored as rappers and DJs combine talents for a four-part series of concerts, honoring arrangers/composers that have played an important role in influencing Hip-Hop music since the 1970s.

Presented by VTech Communications and music production company Mochilla, the Timeless concert series will kick off February 1 at the Harriet and Charles Luckman Fine Arts Complex in Los Angeles with a performance by Ethiopian composer Mulatu Astatke.

Former Jurassic 5 and Ozomatli DJ Cut Chemist will open the show along with Quantic and Egon. Regarded as the "father of Ethio-jazz," Astatke is credited with having introduced congas and bongos into popular Ethiopian music in an effort to create a new focus on instrumentation.

The composer/arranger/multi-instrumentalist has influenced various rappers and DJs, including Cut Chemist, Quantic, Madlib and Kanaan.

Full orchestra collaborations honoring a featured arranger/composer will be featured at theTimeless concerts.

The international headliners will perform their all-time hits plus an exclusive new piece, while revered turntablists will open each show with sets centering around the legacy and era of the highlighted composer.

"Today's Hip-Hop music revolves around beat-makers and producers who often take their cues and samples from compositions of different generations and countries," Mochilla founder Brian Cross said about the motivation behind the concert series. "Timeless brings these worlds together in Los Angeles – home to the world's greatest musicians and session artists. Only here can we bring together such a diversity of music in this grand scale."

A tribute to the late J. Dilla by chamber musicians Carlos Nino and Miguel Ferguson will follow the Astatke performance on February 22, along with an opening set by DJ House Shoes.

The remaining shows in the Timeless series will include Brazilian folk-jazz artist Arthur Verocai who will be honored with sets by Madlib and DJ Nuts on March 15 and legendary composer David Axelrod, who will share the stage with DJ J.Rocc on April 5.

Over the years, Axelrod’s music has been sampled by various Hip-Hop artists such as Lil Wayne, Dr. Dre, Madlib and Cypress Hill. Tickets for the Timeless concert series are available through Ticketmaster and the Luckman box office.

General admission prices start at $22.50. For details on the on the Timeless concert series, visit www.vtechphones.com/timeless.