Outer Spaces: Detroit Rapper, Havana Hip Hop group, and New York Poets to Tour Kalamazoo

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  • Written by: Colin Smith
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For those unfamiliar with the Detroit rapper Invincible, this cofounder of Emergence Media spends her time touring, workshoping with pupils, and collaborating in multimedia projects. Fire Historical and Cultural Arts Collaborative and Kalamazoo College are bringing Invincible and Cuban hip hop group Las Krudas to Fire for “Art as a Hammer,” the first in a series of creative justice workshops, on Friday, May 10.

The workshop will start at 4:30pm followed by a performance at 8:30pm. A vegan and vegetarian dinner will be provided by local restaurant Fuel at 6:30pm. K students who would like a ride to this event can sign up for transportation in the Office of Student Development by Thursday, May 9. This event is free to K students and $5 for non-students.

For those who will miss the workshop and first performance, both acts will be performing at Kalamazoo College the following night, which is free for K College students. Students may bring one free guest to Saturday’s performance and there is a $5 cover for subsequent guests. K College gets the bonus of Brooklyn spoken word duo Climbing PoeTree. These three performers – Invincible, Las Krudas and Climbing PoeTree – have been performing together as the Outer Spaces tour for the past year.

The Outer Spaces tour focuses on representing the strength of marginalized identities through various art forms. On the tour’s official website, the performers describe themselves as “a brigade of shape-shifting, gender-bending artists and activists who refuse to deny any aspects of their dynamic identities, seeking to explore the crossroads of these margins where new ideas emerge and grow.”

The civic engagement scholar for Fire, who doubles as a director of the Kalamazoo Poetry Collective, Bridgett Colling said she hopes that between 25-50 non-students from the Kalamazoo community to come to Saturday’s event. It will be during the same weekend as the school’s ceremony of the Global Prize for Collaborative Social Justice Leadership.

Colling mentioned the scope of this tour is huge for the city and the College. As an embracer of spoken word poetry she is glad to see high caliber artists from New York City, Detroit and Cuba come to Kalamazoo.

She said this is probably “the biggest rap performance that will ever have happened at Kalamazoo College.”

Invincible is an active artist who has been mentioned in the New York Times, and fellow music artist Talib Kweli declared on the radio show Noisemakers that Invincible is “one of the most talented emcees I’ve ever heard black or white, male or female.”

With two opportunities to see these artists, Fire suggests showing up early for either of them.

Article written by

Colin Smith is writer for Kalamazoo Local Music and Editor-in-Chief of Kalamazoo College's Naked Music Magazine, and more recently he started contributing to SMASH Magazine. After isolating himself in the library for long hours, he plays, performs, and writes music for band King Median.

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