Thank You for Showing Up, Living Loud, and Representing Our City!
Baltimore By Baltimore (BxB) Music & Makers Festival debuted for Charm City with its first big party and outdoor marketplace at the Inner Habor Amphitheater. Hundreds of visitors came by bike, skateboard, car, bus, and Water Taxi to this groundbreaking event for local artists, performers, and vendors that represented just a taste of what Baltimore By Baltimore has in store for the rest of the summer.
"These Baltimore artists deserve to be on international platforms–do you hear me," Kish The Lioness, Founder of The Poetry Party, said aloud in the microphone to the audience, cheering the sentiment felt in her timely words. "Baltimore art is amazing, it's unmatched, and it's unlike anything you can get anywhere else. You can only get it here."
Kish the Lioness, @Kishthelioness
Kish's words could not have been more profound. The impressive lineup of performers entertaining the crowd at the Amphitheater was produced and arranged by the Artist Navigator, Terrell Brown.
The Artist Navigator convenes the creative community & local resources to ensure Baltimore’s creative professionals can grow, thrive, and build sustainable careers in their field.
“For me, it’s all about leveraging our creative economy to show how abundant these spaces can be while representing all of Baltimore. We’re looking forward to having a large turnout, bringing positive energy to the Harbor and showcasing the authentic culture and internationally known artists who are from here, but many people may not know.” ~ Terrell Brown, The Artist Navigator
Emceed by 1500 FM Radio's Dr. Corbin Smith and DJ Twisted, under a bright afternoon sky, Baltimore By Baltimore's vibrant audience experienced some of the brightest artistic luminaries from our city as they took the stage producing this rich, new generation of sound.
The band, Eat The Cake started the festivities with their brand of hip-rock that had everyone vibing out as they took listeners' "Cloud Surfin." Every heart in the audience filled the Amphitheater, beat to the pulsating rhythms of Wombwork's traditional African drumming as the sound of djembes beautifully echoed to both ends of The Inner Harbor's Promenade. Legendary street performer Michael Rosman wowed the audience with his juggling acts, starting with three sharp knives on a wobbly plank that rolled side-to-side. His next feat elevated the amazement when he did the same with three flaming batons from the heights of his ten-foot-tall unicycle.
The Poetry Party welcomed the next wave of tomorrow's rhymes and sonneteers to today's stage. Blaqstarr's hyped-up set transformed the Amphitheater into a waterside dance circle that had everyone moving to his thumping beats. John Tyler and his band gave the crowd 'Joy' and other hand-clapping jams that perfectly scored the feel of the late afternoon sights of the weekend happening on The Waterfront. Kendall Green's solo, acoustic guitar performance of soul favorites and original songs grooved the audience as the sun began to set. Closing out the show as the lights from the stage came on, and the last traces of sunlight was Abdu Ali, who made it clear to the audience that this was going to be a true Baltimore Club experience as his 808-infused music boomed from the speakers. The impact of Baltimore By Baltimore was heard on stage, but always seen in its marketplace.
The range of flavors on hand kept lines of visitors fed with awesome menus and drinks that cooled and refreshed. Flair Cuisine's catered spread of healthy and flavorful options like the Cajun Rasta Pasta became a word-of-mouth favorite and was a hit with each plate served. The menu of 3 Jay's Seafood & Chicken selection introduced loyalists and newcomers to the creative mix of surf and turf, with the Crab Fries being one of the must-have dishes of the event. Boss Burger, with options for beef-lovers and vegans, shows how its diverse menu of the mouth-watering list of stacked burgers makes cravings a thing of the past.
The delicious snowballs from Sweet Kam's were icy relief from the afternoon heat. The Bar Movement proved to be the best thirst quencher for adults as the mixed alcoholic drinks made each sip more chill than the previous one. Baltimore By Baltimore was also about the craftspeople, makers, and organizations making this town go.
Accessmatized provided the 'Glambulousness' with the premier of its Chic-in-Box beauty line for all to behold. Milk Reclamation Barn showcased its line of environmentally conscious candles and other goods. The African Diaspora Alliance engaged with visitors who were interested in their cultural impact on the community and beyond. Girl In Space featured its line of STEM-themed apparel for all fashion-forward astronauts in the making. The Tree House Project was on-site to inform visitors of the outreach this organization provides disconnected youth with the resources needed for a smooth transition to adulthood.
The outdoor pavilion of seats with two chair tables under the shade of table umbrellas where many sat to be a part of the next great thing to happen to Baltimore. This sentiment of unity and togetherness was what was heard in the speech given at the start of Baltimore By Baltimore by Tendea Family Founder and organizer Elijah Miles.
"At Tendea [Family], as a slogan, we say, "Our Hood. Our Job". We say Our Hood, Our Job. Because we recognize that our city, wherever people are in Baltimore city, that our city is our responsibility. So if you feel the same, let me hear you say, "Our Hood, Our Job."
Miles words came a week to the day after one of Tendea Family's interns, 17-year-old Neal Mack, was killed where his call for peace, unity, and direct impact currently resounded. The sense of opportunity to enact measurable good in our communities in and around The Waterfront heard in his uplifting speech is what everyone needed to hear as we shift from a time of mourning to one of actionable purpose. Baltimore By Baltimore is more than an outside, social gettogether by the water. Its foundation to unify a city, often divided by many variables with art, culture, food, song, and dance, makes this series a vital piece of Baltimore's future.