Pharrell Brings Out Janelle Monae at Afro-Punk
Better late than never! By the time 12oz came to Afro-Punk this past Sunday, Commodore Barry Park was packed to the brim, 200,000 attendees deep. The press list was maxed out, but the staff was cool enough to escort us into the press pitt, minutes before Janelle Monae hit the stage. Pharrell Williams hyped up the crowd before introducing the Kansas City-born songstress to screaming fans.
And Monae did not disappoint. Her performance kept the crowd electric with each of her hits, including “Dance or Die”, “Faster”, “Locked Inside”, and “Tightrope”. She paid homage to the Jackson 5, rocking her rendition of “I Want You Back”. With the park at capacity, patrons lined the sidewalks around her stage to hear her croon. Some even jumped onto a pickup truck to get a better view from behind the fences. Monae returned for an extended encore before the 8th annual festival came to a well-merited close.
Text and Photo: Steven Lau