Amazon Music has announced “Black Culture Is…” a new programming iniative that celebrates Black culture and artistry for 2022. All month long, Amazon Music will release a brand-new slate of content celebrating some of the artists and creators who define Black culture with livestreams, Amazon Original songs, playlists, and more. And because celebrating Black History extends beyond February, the “Black Culture Is…” campaign will continue through Black Music Month in June, with more activations to be announced in the coming months. The aesthetic for the “Black Culture Is…” campaign was designed by creative director and multidisciplinary artist Temi Coker.
A Livestreamed Celebration of Black Artistry
Throughout Black History Month, the Amazon Music channel on Twitch will be the home for the hottest brand-new live performances, series, and interviews with the artists and creators who define Black culture. As part of “Black Culture Is…,” Amazon Music will stream the Atlanta homecoming show from multiplatinum singer/songwriter Summer Walker at the Coca-Cola Roxy. Fresh off the record-breaking success of Summer Walker’s latest album, Still Over It (LVRN/Interscope Records), Summer Walker will stream her performance on the Amazon Music channel on Twitch on February 18.
Amazon Music is also introducing Hello, My Name Is, a new series of livestreamed concerts for Black Music Month. Premiering on February 16, the show will air live from Harun Coffee in Los Angeles and feature stripped-down, intimate performances from hip-hop and R&B artists on the bleeding edge of culture. Following each performance, Amazon Music will host a roundtable conversation about Black artistry in music, the arts, and beyond.
Amazon Music can also reveal that CONNECTED with Wayno, the monthly talk show hosted by hip-hop industry veteran Wayno, will now air biweekly on the Amazon Music channel on Twitch. Featuring candid conversations between host Wayno and some of the biggest names in hip-hop and R&B, the new schedule will kick off with Wayno’s interview with Cordae on February 9. Launched in 2020 as part of Black Music Month, word missing here, maybe talk show’s title? connects the dots between ideas, people, and music through stories told by artists and innovators at the forefront of hip-hop and R&B, and has featured interviews with artists like Migos, Isaiah Rashad, Coi Leray, Vince Staples, and G Herbo.
Finally, every Monday at 6 p.m. PST, the Amazon Music channel on Twitch will debut new episodes of Group Thread, an ongoing livestream series of conversations, produced by Amazon Music, between artists and creators from around the world. Hosted by Billboard’s Hip-Hop Editor, Carl Lamarre, the Black History Month episodes of the series will premiere on February 7 and feature candid conversations with Black artists and industry professionals.
Never-Before-Heard Amazon Originals From the Next Generation of Black Artists
“Black Culture Is…” will also celebrate the next generation of Black artists with a series of brand-new Amazon Original tracks. The series kicks off today with a brand-new cover of OutKast’s “Prototype” from up-and-coming Wisconsin newcomer Unusual Demont, which can be heard here. Later this month, Amazon Music will spotlight exciting newcomer Muni Long, releasing a brand-new version of her smash hit, “Hrs And Hrs,” as an Amazon Original track. And to close out the month, Montreal-born, LA-based polymath Chiiild will release a new cover of Kid Cudi’s breakout single “Day ’N’ Nite.”
“I chose to cover “Prototype’ for the Black History Month celebration on Amazon Music because when I think of artists that have defined Black culture, OutKast is undeniably one of the many on that list. I feel like they—especially Andre 3000—have consistently stepped outside of ‘the box’ when it comes to some of the norms that were (and some still are) expected when you have Black skin. That’s always been something I really admired and found validating when I was younger growing up with a lot of niche interests and hobbies that my cousins and friends weren’t necessarily rocking with,” said Unusual Demont. “That’s all to say, I’m honored to have the opportunity to cover a song by an artists that’s had such a huge impact on kids like me, and I hope to do it justice."
Also launching today, music experts from Amazon Music have curated Black Culture Radio, a new multigenre station highlighting Black artists from across genres, regions, and generations. Each week in February, the playlist will take music fans on a trip through different regions of America, including the East Coast, West Coast, Midwest, Gulf Coast, and Southeast—exploring the musical impact of Black music and culture along the way. Whether it’s classics from artists like Patti LaBelle and Parliament to current legends like J. Cole and Tyler, the Creator, the station is a showcase for the best in Black artistry.
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