August 22, 2011 Posted by TiffenyC in B[+]Scene

BAAMfest! 2011

My Experience at BAAMfest! 2011 was unforgettable to say the least, this year’s festival was a spectacular event. The Birmingham Arts and Music festival — BAAMfest!, is a celebration of Birmingham’s rich and diverse cultural arts scene. With over 200 acts performing at various venues throughout the Birmingham Metro Area, founder Shariff Simmons has a lot to be proud of.

Now in year two, BAAMfest! provided an additional eight local venues to the existing thirteen from last year. Several of the new venues added to this year’s BAAMfest! includes: Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Birmingham Museum of Art, McWane Center, Artplay and Alys Stephens Center.

Along with the expansion of venues, BAAMfest! also expanded its roster of local talent. Organizers added new genres of art inclusive of spoken word, 1 person monologues, belly dancing, poetry, art exhibitions, film, and a spectacular Kidfest!

Top 5 Reason BAAMfest! Rocks

  1. BAAMfest! brings together a community of local artists, venues, fans, volunteers, and media to fellowship amongst each other and enjoy an unforgettable experience. BAAMfest! is also a great way to meet new people.
  2. How else can you see over 200 local artist, in one weekend, of various genres spread throughout 23 local venues for only $40.00.
  3. With a vast variety of talent BAAMfest! is sure to have something everyone can enjoy, not to mention several kid friendly venues, and performances.
  4. Because all the participating venues of BAAMfest! are close, you dont have to stay at one place. Simply explore the streets of Birmingham to hear a plethora of your favorite local artist.
  5. Grammy Nominated artist N’Dambi autographed my cd, took a picture with me, and followed me on twitter! Had to throw that in.


How I spent my BAAM! filled weekend?
  • Day 2
  • Day 3

Day 2 of BAAMfest!

I got a chance to visit about six different venues, and we wont even count how many different acts. Take 10 at ArtPlay was so much fun, the level of talent displayed was very impressive. Take 10 performances consisted of: 1 person monologues, spoken word, gospel artist, & poems. During the Take 10 event John Paul Taylor — The Real Life Poets INC, performed with his daughter Pootie. Pootie performed with just as much enthusiasm as her dad and their poem together was both inspiring and precious.

Next up at Rogue Tavern, Burning Vinyl was rocking the stage, this local band was awesome is sure to be added to my ipod playlist. After grabbing a quick bite to eat I headed over to the Alys Stephens Center for the “Soul Lounge” and experienced the melodic sounds of local artists Laura Luke, & Kibibi Jones with Lava Soul and Shaundra T. Smith. Let me just say, if you have not heard these ladies sing you are in for a treat because they can blow. After these talented ladies performed it was time to experience what I had been waiting all weekend to see, N’Dambi in concert. The wonderful ArtBelles, Tamikabelle & Shermikabelle of ArtBLT joined me for the N’Dambi concert. To read more about my experience at the N’Dambi concert please click here.

After the N’Dambi set, the ArtBelles and I shot over to Birmingham’s German bar, Das Haus, where Miss Information Age was performing. Next up it was time to mellow the night with the smooth sounds of N’fusion featuring James Crumb Jr. at the Wineloft. We relaxed a little at the Wineloft before walking to Steel, where Dub Massive was on stage. Packed to capacity and unable to get in, we were still thrilled to listen to this reggae influenced band from the door.

As midnight approached it was now time to make our way back to Das Haus to see bellydancing from the Devyani Dance Company. Shermikabelle was feeling the music in her feet and showed off a few moves with the Devyani Dance Company. You can see a few pics of them here. After the Devyani Dance Company finished performing day 2 of BAAMfest! ended for me.

Day 3 of BAAMfest!

Workplay was the place to be for day 3 of BAAMfest, The Gospel Showcase was absolutely divine. Candy West — Worship Center Christian Church, was definitely the perfect hostess for the event. Netra Young & Just Cause had the presence of the Lord filling the place. Lead singer Netra Young has a very soulful voice and paired with the beautiful harmonies of her band they produce an amazing worship experience.

Next up in the showcase was my fellow church member Curtis Glenn & Free 2 Worship. Four words to sum this band up, THEY ROCKED THE HOUSE. Curtis Glenn has a way of really reaching people and spreading the word of God. With the groups trendy appearance, they had every young and seasoned worshiper on their feet.

As Curtis Glenn & Free 2 Worship exited the stage Candy West had them to return along with all the previous acts, for a massive praise & worship session. Netra Young led a song, and Candy followed, not a soul was sitting in the building.

Unfortunately I did not get a chance to experience the amazing talent of Valerie Giles however, other patrons in attendance told me she was really good. I’m hoping to support this local artist at her next performance very soon.

After the Gospel Showcase I rushed over to the Winloft and was able to briefly catch the beginning of Karen Thacker and Serrasa’s performance. If you have a passion for folk or blues music you should definitely try to catch this duo at their next performance.

Somehow I worked my way back to Workplace and rocked out hard with The Exhibits. Their one hour set was just not long enough. The Exhibits have a very unique, acoustic rock sound when they perform. Lead Singer/Guitarist Eric McGuinty displays his passion for theatrics on stage with his humor & satire while performing. If you have yet to experience a show from this band check their schedule and make their next performance!

To wrap up my BAAM! filled weekend, BAAMfest! founder, Shariff Simmons & Modern Democracy threw the concert of the century. This was my first time hearing Shariff Simmons & Modern Democracy in concert and it most definitely will not be my last. The band fuses together hip hop, spoken word, rock, soul, jazz and many more music genres to produce a sound like no other. What impressed me most was the positive message Shariff shares through his music, he performs what I call feel good music. Shariff Simmons and Modern Democracy are an impressive group of individuals and I stamp my seal of approval on this band.

Wrapping up day three of BAAMfest! was bitter sweet, I am sad the weekend is gone but happy to attend the next Birmingham festival.

BAAMfest! 2011 was a success. Be sure to follow BAAMfest! on twitter (@baamfest) to view more reviews from the festival and also to stay up to date with next year’s event. Hat’s off to the staff for this year, you guys did an amazing job.

For your viewing pleasure I have included a picture gallery of the different artist I got the chance to meet during BAAMfest!

BAAMfest! 2011 Gallery

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