Michael Franti & Spearhead bring their positivity to Charlotte
Love Out Loud Tour 2017
by: Aleshia Jenkins
It was a warm Tuesday night and the fans were lined up outside The Neighborhood Theater for a SOLD OUT show, ready for what some called a “festival of irie vibes.” It’s been a year since Charlotte has seen the barefooted effervescent Michael Franti, and a year, some stated, is about as long as his fans can wait.
The opening band, California’s Trevor Green, is touring on his newest album Voices in the Wind. His folky-pop vibe really hit the crowd and primed us with all the good vibes for what was coming. He created a very interesting yet relaxing environment. The talent was not lost on the crowd, especially when you get to hear his vocals and watch him play various instruments such as a didgeridoo, guitars, and multiple percussion elements. A one-man band with backup causes a whirlwind of layers.
Facts: Michael Franti started a band, which he named The Beatnigs, while attending the University of San Francisco in 1986. Fast forward to 2017 and he’s out touring with The Spearheads on his 2016 album SoulRocker and rumors hinting at a new album!
Michael’s message is simple: live positive, love one another, and and give back to your community and the world. He demonstrates this by being an advocate for positive social change and political issues, and the message is clear in his music. The music blends multi-genres of hip hop, reggae/reggae fusion and folk, which are the main ingredients that bring together a diverse fan base of all ages and races.
Next thing you know, he’s calling all the kids onto the stage to sing with him and play instruments with the band. Another thing to look forward to during his concerts are the huge yellow beach balls, which one of audience members told me was one of his trademark of his show.
I’ve listened to and liked Franti’s music for several years now, but after finally seeing him in person and experiencing the live show, I’m officially a Michael Franti fan! There aren’t many entertainers if any, that will stay after the show and take pictures with and sign autographs with every person there. His latest release on Spotify is Crazy For You (SF Funk Mix). This song will bring a smile to you face when you hear it.
See full gallery of the night here
Catch this tour!