Judging from a Huffington Post piece he wrote Tuesday, hip-hop artist Head-Roc isn’t a huge fan of the Occupy D.C. encampment in McPherson Square and uses the group’s latest attempt to bring attention to the issue of D.C. statehood as an example.
“D.C. statehood is a serious subject in this town, and there are many groups working in various capacities to popularize the movement. To my knowledge, none of them have signed on as officially endorsing the hunger strike action initiated by Occupy D.C. participants. ”
Still, the Washington resident will appear along with hip-hop group Dead Prez in what he’s calling a “Keep D.C. Wal-Mart Free” rally at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at Occupy D.C. headquarters. He credits Faye Williams, a small-business owner and activist specializing in African-American leadership issues, for the invite.
Head-Roc is a longtime critic of the plan to install Wal-Marts in the District. In a Washington City Paper piece written in February, Head-Roc wrote that the move would disrupt small businesses and contribute to a “host of other gentrification deals that have sucked this city dry.”
New York City-based Dead Prez is known for its political leanings and is notable in the music world because of its opposition to corporate record labels. (In his op-ed, Head-Roc called the group “internationally known Black Love Pan-Africanist agenda-driven hip-hop legends.”)
From a 2010 Post review: “Dead Prez’s emergence 10 years ago seemed to come at an odd time, as the duo’s hyper-left political stance and back-to-basics musical style landed it somewhere between N.W.A. and Public Enemy — a good eight years after conscious, Afro-centric rap crested. But while many a rapper donned red, black and green liberation colors and rode the coattails of such landmark acts as X-Clan and Brand Nubian, Dead Prez wasn’t flirting with revolution as trend. It was actually quite sincere.”
The concert is expected to last until 1:30 p.m.