The Office of Student Life, Quality Enhancement Plan, the International Delta Blues Project, the Delta Center for Culture and Learning, and the Delta Music Institute partnered on April 11 to host Southern hip-hop artists and social activists Marco Pavé and Alfred Banks for two events open to the Delta State community and public.
These events were part of the sustainability mission of Delta State’s annual Winning the Race Conference.
Scott Barretta from the International Delta Blues Project moderated a lunch panel featuring Pavé and Alfred Banks. The discussion centered on the intersections of music, social justice and activism, as well as music entrepreneurship, the creative economy and regional musical influences. Later that afternoon Pavé and Banks performed a casual, lounge-style concert in the Union.
Pavé, a Memphis native, and Banks, from New Orleans, have built solid followings in and around their respective cities and beyond. Pavé has been featured on Apple music, MTV, The Root and has delivered a Ted Talk on arts entrepreneurship. Banks has been featured on RevoltTv, BBC Russia, on several national tours, and has a song featured in a Volkswagen commercial. On their own, they both have viable careers, but in the summer of 2016 they decided to join forces and tour together through the River Kings Tour. Their 2016 efforts were so successful that round two will be an 18-city tour.