Local Bands Put A Unique Twist on Cover Songs in 4th Annual ‘Folk The Police’ Event

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Folk The Police

Imagine Jay-Z’s “Big Pimpin’,” Lil Jon’s “Get Low,” and “Root Down” by the Beastie Boys…played in the style of folk music.

Awesome, right?

Putting a folk spin on classic rap and hip-hop songs is exactly what local bands will be doing this Sunday at The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor at the 4th annual FOLK THE POLICE showcase.

This year’s line-up boasts 17 different acts, each playing two hip-hop/rap songs in the style of folk/bluegrass/roots music. From Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers to the Ben Daniels Band (did you know actor Jeff Daniels has a son Ben…who fronts the Ben Daniels Band? You do now.), this line-up is sure to amaze. View the full line-up HERE.

Matthew Altruda – creator of the Sonic Lunch summer concert series, host of an Ann Arbor local radio show, and in our opinion, pretty much the “mayor” of all things local music in A2 – invites bands from all over the Mitten to take part in this unique musical event.

CW50 had a chance to chat with Matthew about this year’s FOLK THE POLICE event. Here’s what he had to say:

This is the 4th year of Folk the Police – how did you come up with the concept?

The named just popped in my head one day! I asked a few bands about the concept, and everyone loved the idea.  Who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned themed show?

With so many musical genres, how did you settle on Rap to Folk? 

It just works!  I love rap music and who wouldn’t want to hear NWA in the style of bluegrass?  It’s not only hilarious, but the music is fantastic, too.

Tell us about a couple of the most memorable Folk the Police performances… 

There are so many…

A couple of my personal favorites were Back Forty playing Eminem’s “Without Me” and The Appleseed Collective’s performance of “Gimmie That Nut” by Easy E.

There is so much collaboration with all the artists, and this night has turned into a family reunion for musicians.  The majority of the bands also bring their Folk The Police songs on the road and incorporate them into their sets.  I went to see Dragon Wagon at The Ark last Saturday, and people in the audience where yelling out “Push It”!! They covered that Salt & Pepper song last year and it became of their fan favorites.

Are the participating artists from all over Michigan, or just the Ann Arbor area? 

Yes,  I really try to get a few bands from different Michigan cities to help them build in the Ann Arbor market.

If YOU were going to cover two rap songs…which would they be?

Damn!  That is a really good question…

Hmmm, I’d have to say Sir Mix A-lot – “Posse On Broadway” and  NWA – “FOLK THE POLICE”

Aside from the bands themselves, any notable changes between this year and previous years?

Yes! This year I am going to have different Ann Arbor hip-hop artists rapping/free-styling between bands to help promote our hip-hop scene…and make quite the dance party.

How can bands get involved in upcoming Folk the Police showcases?

Bands can always reach out to me with inquiries about FOLK THE POLICE (or for consideration of their music for airplay) at treetownsound.com.

What is your favorite part about Folk the Police?

My favorite part about Folk The Police is how much joy it truly brings everyone involved in the experience.

Don’t miss FOLK THE POLICE, this Sunday at the Blind Pig! Doors are at 8pm, the show is 18+, and tickets are $15 – hurry, before they’re sold out!

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