×

As Atlanta’s One Musicfest Turns 10, KP the Great Promises All-Star Surprise

Tens of thousands are expected to flock to Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park this weekend for One Musicfest, the Southeast’s largest annual urban progressive music festival. Founded by Jason Carter in 2010, the two-day festival boasts a lineup of diverse acts such as Queen Naija, Busta Rhymes, Tory Lanez, Three 6 Mafia , Gucci Mane, Rae Sremmurd, Raphael Saadiq, Teyana Taylor, DMX, Rick Ross, Ari Lennox, Wu-Tang Clan and a cadre consisting of Trina, T-Pain, Trick Daddy, Uncle Luke and more being billed as the Florida All-Stars. Sunday will also include an OMF honors ceremony recognizing super producers Dallas Austin and Jermaine Dupri for their accomplishments.

Headlining the festival is one of Atlanta’s own, KP the Great, aka Kawan Prather, the multi hyphenate DJ-music executive-producer who will flex his muscle as a performer and connector by bringing his SUPERFRIENDS to the stage to close out the weekend. Usher and Pharrell Williams were revealed as two of the SUPERFRIENDS several weeks ago, but Friday the festival announced that Lil Jon would also be part of the set.

“We talked at Essence [Festival] and that was it,” Prather tells Variety of recruiting Lil Jon for part of his performance. “That was it. It was that simple.“

Prather and Lil Jon go way back. “In the 90’s we had this club called The Warehouse on Marietta Street about half a mile from where Centennial Park is now,” he says. “We were at this club, Jon was deejaying, we were performing; I was in a group [Parental Advisory/P.A.]. This was ‘91 or ‘92. It’s funny to think that first of all we are performing here, there was no Centennial Park back then, from a club that is a parking lot now.”

Prather’s goal with this 10th anniversary of One Musicfest is to shine a light on the city that has made an undeniable impact on the music industry. “Atlanta is a different place but the things are still the same that guide the culture and guide the temperature here now,” he says. “It’s still us as the people here.”

But there’s something to be said for size. Adds Prather: “When you think of a DJ set for a black music festival, I don’ t think we get a lot of production like this, and honestly One Musicfest was able to make sure that we had things to make this a bigger show. I know because it’s their 10-year anniversary they want it to be amazing. People are going to leave feeling like they’ve never seen a show or party combination like this that they felt involved in. It’s all of our show. When I say that I don’t mean just the people on the stage, I mean Atlanta. So this is our time to turn up and let loose.“

Prather’s close relationships with a number of entertainers helped facilitate the set. Currently the Music Director for I Am Other, Pharrell Williams’ record label, in April KP deejayed for Williams at the artist’s inaugural Something In The Water Festival in Virginia Beach, VA. It’s only right that Williams would come to KP’s hometown to return the favor.

Kawan Prather / KP the GreatOne MusicFest, Atlanta, USA - 09 Sep 2018
CREDIT: RMV/Shutterstock

“I think what it says more than anything is that is my friend,” Prather says of Williams. “We’ve done a lot of things that have affected each other, personally, professionally, in a way that you don’t even think of things that you ask each other sometimes. The fact that this is just a real genuine friendship, it just so happens that we work in a field where we get to do this shit. It’s amazing when you think about it. The sharing of hometown cultures.“

Pharrell and Lil Jon have both collaborated with Usher on big hits, so some of Prather’s set may seem easy enough to figure out in advance, but bear in mind that these are just three previously announced guests. KP says we can expect, “about seven more.”

“I like the idea of surprises,” Prather tells Variety. “I know in today’s social media world there’s always something to be said, but there’s something special about when you see something that you weren’t expecting to, but it was something you wanted that you didn’t even know you wanted that day.”

More Music

  • Mura Masa’s 'R.Y.C.': Album Review

    Mura Masa’s 'R.Y.C.': Album Review

    With his 2017 self-titled debut album, Mura Masa — a.k.a. 23-year-old Channel Islands spawn Alex Crossan — was nominated for two Grammys, including Best Dance Album, and later won one for his remix of Haim’s “Walking Away.” Guests on the album ranged from A$AP Rocky and Charli XCX to Blur/Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn and Desiigner. [...]

  • Recording Academy President/CEO Deborah Dugan participates

    Executive Assistant Preparing Lawsuit Against Ousted Grammy Chief

    In the latest twist in the increasingly bitter exit of Deborah Dugan from the Recording Academy after just five months, the ousted president/CEO is about to face a lawsuit from her former assistant, Claudine Little, who has retained former Harvey Weinstein/ Charlie Walk attorney Patty Glaser to represent her, two sources tell Variety. The news was [...]

  • Curb Your Enthusiasm

    'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Music: How the Italian Tuba March Found Its Way to Larry David

    When “Curb Your Enthusiasm” returns for its much-anticipated 10th season it does so with it a musical theme that’s a prime example of recognizable sonic branding and has become synonymous with comedy in our complicated times: “Frolic” by composer Luciano Michelini. But surprisingly, this comic march for tuba, mandolin and piano wasn’t specifically written for [...]

  • Kacey Musgraves, from left, Reba McEntire,

    How a Twitter Joke About Women at Country Radio Reignited a Firestorm (Column)

    Do you remember the classic Bee Gees song that goes, “I started a joke… that started the whole world crying”? (It’s okay if you don’t.) That’s how I felt this week after realizing that a sarcastic tweet I’d typed out in a half-minute at a stoplight led to a social media firestorm, then a tempest of [...]

  • Tanya Tucker and Brandi Carlile backstageAmericana

    Tanya Tucker and Brandi Carlile Set as Dynamic Duo for Grammys

    Country legend Tanya Tucker and her producer, Brandi Carlile, will perform together on the Grammys  in one week, both singers announced on their respective social media accounts Sunday. Wrote Carlile: “Let’s. do. this.” (One of the first responses on Carlile’s Instagram came from a fellow Seattle musician, Soundgarden’s Matt Cameron: “Hell yes!”) “I wanted you [...]

  • Billie EilishiHeartRadio ALTer EGO, Show, The

    Billie Eilish, Coldplay, the Black Keys Rock iHeartRadio AlterEgo (Photos)

    iHeartRadio celebrated the alternative stars of its airwaves on Saturday night with AlterEgo, inviting the likes of Billie Eilish, Coldplay, Blink-182 and the Black Keys to Los Angeles’ the Forum. Eilish kicked off the show — a solid strategy in getting the younger set to get in on time — with hits like “Bad Guy,” [...]

  • Singer David Olney

    Singer David Olney Dies During Performance at Florida's 30A Festival

    Singer-songwriter David Olney has died at age 71, after falling silent and dropping his head in the midst of a performance at the 30A Songwriters Festival in Florida Saturday night. Some news reports said he “collapsed” on stage, but that isn’t quite true: Olney simply became still on his stool, leading some audience members and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content