The annual SummerStage concert series, an ongoing, multi-venue performing arts festival that delivers several hip hop shows throughout the summer season, kicks off tonight in both Central Park and Betsy Head Memorial Playground in Brooklyn. The Betsy Head show will feature Funkmaster Flex and veteran Long Island group, EPMD.
The first of several hip hop shows scheduled as part of the performing arts series, this “Salute to Hip Hop” features the Long Island duo known for a string of gold albums and hits, who split up in 1993 but reunited, continuing to release albums and tour worldwide. Both Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith have also had success as soloists, as well as producing for other artists is the extended EMPD family, such as Redman, Das EFX and Keith Murray.
Hot 97′s Funkmaster Flex will be on hand holding down the DJ duties for the event.
The City Parks Foundation SummerStage series is generous in its attitude toward hip hop, particularly old school artists, as the kickoff show will be followed up by shows by Special Ed (June 8, Betsy Head Memorial Playground) and Nice and Smooth with The Awesome 2 (June 15, Herbert Von King Park). Other artists performing for free this summer include Rakim, The Sugarhill Gang, Talib Kweli and Slick Rick, among others.
Check out our New York-area hip hop events calendar for all of the SummerStage hip hop shows. For full details on the concert series, which also features R&B, soul, classical, rock and other genres throughout the summer, visit www.SummerStage.org.