DJ Grandmaster Flash (Dance Pavilion, 9:15 p.m.)
This probably goes without saying, but if you’re anywhere near downtown Greensboro on Saturday night, it would be near criminal to miss Grandmaster Flash in a historic appearance at the Dance Pavilion stage.
Flash is one of the Founding Fathers of hip hop, a pioneer of turntablism and a lion of the scene for — gasp! — the last five decades. This is the guy who invented beat-juggling: spinning two copies of the same record concurrently, in order to extend breakdowns or inject samples. And while the description sounds pretty dry, the result is absolutely dope.
I’d advise marking off a space near the stage early of you want to watch a master DJ at work, but better optics may be had near the fringes, where no doubt there will be some serious B-boy action.
Super Chikan & the Fighting Cocks (Dance Pavilion, 5 p.m.)
James “Super Chikan” Johnson came up hard in the Mississippi Delta, picking cotton and steeped in the musical traditions of the Chitlin Circuit — no better crucible for a bluesman.
He came up during a 1990s blues resurgence that saw Chris Thomas King experiment with hip-hop techniques and RL Burnside as the darling of Bonnaroo — a modern, thoroughly electric take on the classic genre. Super Chikan gets the edge because he makes his own guitars.
The Alt (Lawn Stage, 6 p.m.)
Three seasoned Celtic musicians — John Doyle, Eamon O’Leary and Mick McCauley — explore the deep affinity between traditional Irish music and Appalachian folk in what amounts to a supergroup. Guitar, bouzouki, whistle and accordion should feature prominently.
Clinton Fearon & the Boogie Brown Band (Dance Pavilion, 6:45 p.m.)
Clinton Fearon landed sessions with Lee “Scratch” Perry in Jamaica on the strength of his bass playing, a key element of the sound. But with his Boogie Brown Band, Fearon slaps bongos, wails on a six-string and maintains the spiritual vibe of the enterprise.
Leonardo Sandoval (Lawn Stage, 8 p.m.)
Like all great hoofers, Leonardo Sandoval’s feet are his instrument. Fusing American tap techniques with traditional Brazilian rhythms, he’s brought his act to stately concert halls, subway platforms and everywhere in between. If we’re lucky, we’ll see his newest touring act with a stand-up bassist that brings all his influences together.
Joshua Nelson (Citystage, 8:45 p.m.)
Gospel music inspired by ancient Hebrew texts performed by African Americans. Oprah Winfrey named this act one of her “Next Big Things.”
Hula Halau ‘O Lilinoe (Lawn Stage, 9:45 p.m.)
Traditional Hawaiian hula dancing out of California. Why not?
Start the evening at the Wrangler Stage, where at 6:15 p.m. Magnum & Company fires things up with some gospel shouting. Stay for some Bill Kirchen at 7:15, then catch a little Tibetan opera from Chaksam-pa at the Lawn Stage until 8. Maintain the energy level with Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano at Wrangler until it’s time to head over to see Grandmaster Flash at 9:15.
If that looks like a hot mess, consider absconding back to the Wrangler Stage for Jeffrey Broussard & the Creole Cowboys, which should be able to handle the overflow.
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