Editorial By C.R.A.S.H. Green
March 15, 2018
Saturday March 10, I had the good fortune of being able to attend the E.N.D. FR8 Project in Sacramento. I heard about the event while on a small island in Hawaii through a friend of mine who actually helped promote the event. Being a HipHop veteran from the south side of Chicago, I was eager to see what this event had to offer. I should also note that this was my first time visiting Sacramento.
I arrive at the venue and notice the locale is an older theatre called The Colonial. I go up to the ticket booth to purchase my ticket and was told that I was a bit early and the doors would open up in about 20 minutes. As I stand at the ticket window, I could hear faint boom-bap music playing inside. I immediately thought to myself, “This is going to be good.” I go wait in the car for a few and notice quite a few people pulling into the parking lot. I am starting to get excited because even though I am not from the Sacramento area, I was encouraged to know that there is still love for authentic hip-hop.
I finally enter the venue and immediately take a spot in the front row. I noticed two DJs and an emcee on the stage. The music was authentic and definitely of the boom-bap variety. The DJs were showcasing their skills while the emcee was smoothly welcoming the crowd as only a seasoned emcee would know how.
During the pre-event festivities, we were treated to a couple of freestyles by the host as well as emcees he called up. There was also a quick BBoy session which was dope. Had I not been recording live on Facebook, I definitely would have asked to spit a rhyme or rock some footwork.
As the impromptu BBoy session concluded, an emcee crew named Live Manikins graced the stage with a few songs. At first glance, they seemed like an unlikely foursome. Less than two minutes into their set, it was obvious that they were a tight crew. They reminded me of how and why HipHop is so powerful and dope. You can come from any walk of life but how dope you are is all that matters at the end of the day.
Prior to the start of the film, the producers showed their appreciation to everyone who made the project possible, as well as the people who were in attendance. It was now finally film time. As I begin watching the movie, I am immediately reminded of vintage HipHop films such as Style Wars and Wild Style. All of the artwork was good. Some of it I thought was simply amazing! Now let me give a disclaimer by saying that I am not a graf-writer myself. But having been exposed to pieces done by the likes of Hex, Phase2, Taki 123, Oops, Upski, and East3, I know what I like. Simply put, some of the pieces in the film were jaw-dropping!
What was cool about the film was that it occasionally had an interview with an artist. I noticed that each artist interviewed had his identity properly concealed as to avoid any self-snitching. It was fun to hear roars among the audience as certain pieces were being shown, obviously a sign that the artists themselves were in attendance.
One of the funnier organic moments of the showing was when a couple of city workers were shown to clean the trains and a collective “boooo” was let out. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how dope the soundtrack was. There was definitely a synchronicity between the music selections and the artwork.
As a viewer of the film not from the area, I was highly impressed with the production and final product. My only constructive criticism is that it maybe could have been edited to make it a little shorter. I also think it would have been dope to show b-boys, emcees, and some turntablism in the film as well. But hey, at the end of the day, the movie was made for and by graffiti artists.
This was obviously a culmination of years of blood, sweat and tears as evidence of the final product. So if you are spending every nickel and dime on your project, you are entitled to do it how you see fit. HipHop don’t stop!