Fantastic Negrito (Full Rock Show with Live Band) Live at Whelan’s, Wexford Street Sunday September 18th. Tickets €29.50 including booking fee on sale from Ticketmaster Tuesday June 21st. Over 18s, ID Required.
Fantastic Negrito is a man’s truth told in the form of black roots music. Each song is a true story about a musician from Oakland who experienced the highs of a million dollar record deal, the lows of a near fatal car accident that put him in a coma, and is now in a phase of rebirth. In February 2015 he won NPR’s Tiny Desk contest and in March he was one dubbed ‘One of 15 bands to blow up’ at SXSW. In September his song ‘An Honest Man’ was featured as the title track in the Amazon originals TV series “Hand of God”. That same month his EP became the #1 Blues album on iTunes in the US. In the company of legends: Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker and Buddy guy. All of this in one year without a full length album or record label from an Artist nobody heard of. When this journey began, Fantastic Negrito was busking and opening at small venues for small bands. He is now set to play a dozen major festivals and release his first full length album in 2016. All of this has been achieved because people believed in Fantastic Negritos music and his message, and got on board early.
It means something to be from Oakland. The tiny city that birthed the Hell’s Angels, the first sports team in black, and America’s oldest street dance, has always been ground zero for counterculture. It is a place where violent crime, art and swagger converge. It has always been diverse. It has always understood that danger and edge are critical ingredients for art and culture. But Oakland is changing. As its neighbours, San Francisco and Silicon Valley, spill over with money, the economy in Oakland is soaring. Young entrepreneurs and aspiring artists are attracted by the city’s perceived “renaissance.” Oakland is becoming whiter and safer. Now Oakland is ground zero for the national discussion on gentrification. Fantastic Negrito—the project of frontman and songwriter Xavier Dphrepaulezz—bridges Oakland’s future with its legendary past. Xavier is a wounded veteran of the city once claimed by Black Panthers and hustlers. He is a vital voice in what the New York Times called “the hottest city in America.” His album The Last Days of Oakland is about the fallout and rebirth that comes in the wake of a seismic shift. It is intensely relevant — the way his city has always been