Common joins lineup for Durham’s Art of Cool Festival

Common (Photo credit: The D2 Group)

What do you get when you blend Common’s conscious sound, with George Clinton’s funk, and hip-hop god Rakim performing to a live band? You get Durham’s ultra-slick Art of Cool Festival (AOC), a medley of dope music acts ranging from hip-hop and funk to neo-soul, jazz and R&B. A mainstay of Durham’s rich music culture, AOC is expanding the audience of jazz and innovative thought with a three-day music weekend that will host over 15 acts at the state-of-art, Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC).

Common, who recently released a timely new album titled Black America Again, a soulful blend of consciousness and culture, will surely delight fans with hits like “Love Star” featuring Floetry’s Marsha Ambrosia, “Unfamiliar” and “Red Wine.”

“Partnering with DPAC to add Common to an already exciting lineup for the fourth installment of AOCFEST is a true testament to the growth of not only Art of Cool, but also the audience for Black American music in the area,” states Cicely Mitchell, the president and co-founder of The Art of Cool Project. “This truly is an honor and privilege to present such a world-class musician in one of the country’s best performing arts centers.”

Other cool acts taking the stage over the course of the weekend include jazzy soul bands JMSN, The Baylor Project (featuring Jean Baylor of Zhane), Anthony Hamilton’s background singers The Hamiltones, and Erykah Badu’s band RC & The Gritz.

The AOC fest weekend takes place April 28-30, 2017, with Common performing on April 29. Single performance tickets to see Common can be purchased at, Ticketmaster, or The Ticket Center at DPAC. To purchase passes for the 2017 AOC Festival or for more information about the AOC Project and its programming and events, visit

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