New name and location is more than a simple evolution.
2016 meant something different for the guys formerly known as Brokechella. Despite Coachella sending cease and desist letters alongside outright sueing similarly named festivals, Brownies and Lemonade stage providers Kush Fernando and Evan Washington said otherwise in a recent interview with HipHopDX. However, the goal was to elevate into something that wasn’t in the shadow of the America’s biggest two weekend concert. Then there was the demolition of Downtown Los Angeles’ 6th Street Bridge earlier this year which served as Brokechella’s backdrop.
Over the weekend, Brokechella officially transitioned to its new moniker Broke LA at the bigger Art Industrial Complex blocks away from the old 6th Street Bridge location. Besides clearly gaining some major sponsors through Adult Swim, Red Bull and Naked Juices among others, the festival remained the same cool indie art festival that also had an interesting addition. This included a mini film festival. Everything felt larger, but more focused. Of course, the more Hip Hop based B&L, which gained a larger building, continued their ability to find the best unknown artists from around the nation. With that in mind, here are some of the top five acts that caught the attention of Tha Fly Nation.
It must be a challenging dilemma for female rappers to choice between raw sexuality and lyrical content that speaks to listeners. From the looks of things, this Los Angeles native calls herself a inspired by Janis Joplin and Missy Elliot. Another fairly rare thing Lex Lu is good at is live performances with electric dance choreography.
The “number one Jewish rapper living in Korea Town” wears his ethnicity on his sleeve in a way that would sound corny for any other rapper. Thankfully, his background as a New York bred battle emcee makes him a lyrical threat to anyone challenging him. Taking his Hip Hop seriously, he was also backed by “Los Angeles’ Underground Hip Hop king” VerBS.
Yonas "St. Michael" Michael
The breakup of U-N-I during the early 2000’s was a huge blow to many alternative West Coast Hip Hop fans. Since then, Thurz has maintained attention through positively reviewed projects LA Riot and Designer EP alongside his flat out dope Party In My Livingroom parties which also had an iteration at Coachella. Seeing Yonas back in the spotlight as the more artistically eccentric artists at this year’s Broke LA was a treat. Last year’s “Volvo” single was fairly dope under-the-radar L.A. release. Most importantly, it’s a reminder of why an eventual U-N-I reunion needs to happen.
Cam & China
Cam & China are the last remnants of the only noticeable female jerkin group Pink Dollaz. Reducing themselves to a duo, they recently enlisted the help of DJ Mustard for this ratchet banger “NADA.”
Southern California emcee Waju has deep West African roots that comes out in his extremely introspective lyricism. Probably one of the most thoughtful rhymers to approach the Brownies and Lemonade stage this year.