Those of you who regularly follow me know that I’ve long talked about the importance and significance of the black alternative movement–as exemplified most notably by Afropunk–both as an indication of where black consumers are heading and the reasons why marketers should pay attention to it.  Those who haven’t been paying attention, consider this a wake up call.  Especially since the initial lineup for the 2016 Afropunk Festival (August 27-28 in Brooklyn) was announced yesterday, this is a great moment to assess where you stand in relation to the opportunity this festival and the audience it attracts–represents.  I see no reason why there won’t be another 60,000 people here this year.

Ice Cube
TV On The Radio
Tyler The Creator
CeeLo Green
Flying Lotus
Janelle Monae
The Internet
Featuring Members from
Bad Brains
Living Colour
George Clinton
Earl Sweatshirt
Skunk Anansie
Skye & Ross from Morcheeba
Young Fathers
Benjamin Booker
Saul Williams
Angel Haze
Trash Talk
Shabazz Palaces
Seinabo Sey
The Suffers
Sir The Baptist
Downtown Boys
Roman GianArthur
Joe Kay
The Whooligan
Eden Hagos
This year’s theme is Power To The Party.  Of the tagline, the official press release notes the following:
During this important election year, with self-empowerment winds blowing through the air, the theme AFROPUNK has chosen for the 12th installment of the festival is “POWER TO THE PARTY.” Power, it’s a feeling, it’s an energy, it’s the undisputed connection between cause and effect – the best of us give it away, the worst usurp it, but living modern life to the fullest, means either mastering your relationship to it or walking in its shadow. We are not blind.
Party is an oxymoron, it’s a gathering of many for a shared purpose and it’s also an outcast individual, it’s a lively social occasion as well as a gang – and the story of any party is never over, because like naked cities and the metaphysical “I”, there’s always another take.
Power to the Party means trusting the friction, the transference of great capacity to the free spirit, belief in the high-heeled spark of the assembly, and the group-mind’s ability to choose a glorious path. This isn’t about getting elected, or being protected; it’s about staking a claim.
Join the party and feel its power.

TICKETS for the two-day festival can be purchased here.  If you’re planning on attending (and I think you should), you buy in advance.

Want more info on the festival? Visit

Posted by Rob Fields

Observer. Curator. Marketer. Dot connector.