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Art of Cool 2019 Is Just Around The Corner


Jill Scott, Run DMC, Ari Lennox, Whodini and Big Daddy Kane featuring The Symphony lead the all-star lineup for the 2019 sixth Annual Art of Cool Festival(AOCFEST) held September 27-29thin downtown Durham.  Produced by The DOME Group LLC, AOCFEST will feature a range of R&B, Neo Soul, Hip-Hop, Jazz, alternative and spoken word performances and speakers at multiple venues: Durham Bulls Athletic Park (DBAP), the Durham Armory, Motorco Music Hall, Carolina Theatre, The Pinhook, The Masonic Lodge and Beyu Caffe. National Basketball Association star Rasheed Wallace will be the special guest host for the DBAP performances during AOCFEST 2019.  Festival attendees can enjoy this one-of-a-kind event featuring 20-plus acts for 1 price. One Day, Weekend, VIP and Sunday Brunch passes for AOCFEST 2019 are available through Eventbrite: http://bit.ly/30BS5Nb.


Three-time GRAMMY® award-winning singer-songwriter, New York Timesbest-selling poet, and critically acclaimed actor Jill Scottwill headline the AOCFEST stage on September 27that the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.  Dreamville Records singer-songwriter Ari Lennoxwill open the show Friday evening.  That same evening, Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels and his live rock band will hit the Motorco Music Hall stage.

Run DMC, one of the most influential acts in the history of hip-hop culture, will headline AOCFEST on September 28that the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.  This iconic group will commemorate its 30thanniversary, having sold tens of millions of records worldwide and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009. Whodini, one of the first rap groups to add a R&B twist to their music, will open the show Saturday evening. Grammy Award-winning rapper and actor Big Daddy Kane together with The Symphony (Kool G Rap, Craig G and Masta Ace) will also rock the Durham Bulls Athletic Park stage on Saturday, September 28th.

Also performing at AOCFEST 2019 on Friday September 27th: classically-trained hip-hop duo Black Violin; saxophonist Marcus Anderson; Singer-songwriter Yolanda Rabun; NC hip-hop producer, rapper and scholar 9thWonderpresents 95 Live; Go-Go band Jus Once; British soul singer-songwriter OmarLye-Fook; Jazz/hip-hop fusion quintet ZOOCRÜ; Alternative Pop project Flint Eastwood; Beatboxer-singer-pianistButterscotch; MGL & the Rev; Sister-duo and PJ Morton’s background singers, The Amours; and SaxophonistMark Allen Felton. At the Masonic Lodge, a 12-hour DJ Party will be held featuring Trap Karaoke, House, Old School, Neo-Soul, Mixes and Scratches by DJ RNB, DJ Skaz, DJ Kool Sheed, DJ Marlon, DJ Frances Jaye and DJ CK.

Motown Records singer-songwriter BJ the Chicago Kidwill headline AOCFEST’s Saturday September 28thshow on the Durham Armory stage. Additional performances at AOCFEST 2019 on Saturday, September 28th: Rapper, entrepreneur and activist DJ Talib Kweli; Poet Jessica Care Moore; Los Angeles-based collective Emotional Oranges; new genre-bending band Chiiild; Rapper and National Poetry Slam Champion G Yamazawatogether with Rapper J Gunn; Hip-hop artist Lvitto; 3am; Durham artist Caliwood Rassamon; “The Afterparty” with DJ Skillz; “The Dirty South” with  DJ Scientist (Yin-Yang Twins); DJ Nabs presents “Free Yourself” featuring Sole, Dionne Farris and DJ Mike Nice. Professor, author, and speaker Michael Eric Dysonwill inspire festival-goers with a keynote on Saturday, September 28thmorning at the Carolina Theatre.  An Ultimate Musicians Jam session will be held Saturday night at Beyu Caffe.  Saturday’s 12-hour DJ Party will feature Reggae, Hip-Hop battles, Mixes and Scratches by DJ Lil Bee, DJ CK, DJ Fatz, DJ HighRise, DJ Assassin and Public Enemy’s Terminator X at the Masonic Lodge.

On Sunday, September 29th, AOCFEST will host a VIP brunch featuring North Carolina’s favorite musical sons The Hamiltones at the Durham Convention Center from 11am – 2pm.

AOCFEST is proud to have Blue Cross Blue Shield as presenting partner for AOCFEST 2019 and held free “Keeping It Cool” pop-up events at retail centers in Charlotte and Raleigh earlier this month.  The festival is teaming up with A Plus Test Prep to host a free ”Kickoff to College Fair" Saturday, September 18thmorning at the Durham Armory.  The 2019 AOCFEST Urban Vendor Market is sponsored by Mechanics & Farmers Bank (M&F Bank) at CCB Outdoor Plaza and American Tobacco Campus.  The Urban Vendor Market, featuring artisans and food trucks, will be open Friday, September 27 6pm through midnight and Saturday, September 28 from 12pm until midnight.A Power Yoga session will be held Saturday, September 29thmorning at the American Tobacco Campus (Diamond View Park).

“We are really excited about the lineup and activities about to hit the Bull City during AOCFEST 2019,” said Sulaiman Mausi, CEO, The DOME Group LLC. “We are grateful for our sponsors: Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, American Tobacco, APLUS Test Prep, North Carolina Arts Council, Bedlam, Provident 1898, WRAL, Go Durham, Discover Durham, Durham Convention Center, AT&T, The Tower at Mutual Plaza, Johnson Lexus, Coastal Credit Union, Heineken, Long Beverage, Around Dinner Catering, Townebank and Watered Garden Florist Studios. We anticipate an unforgettable cultural experience for loyal Cooligans and newcomers alike.”

“We are particularly proud of the level of free community programming planned for AOCFEST 2019,” said Lesleigh Mausi, Co-Founder and Vice-President, The DOME Group LLC.  “With the incredible support of our partners, the weekend activations will provide a great community atmosphere featuring array of vendors, food trucks, music and FREE family fun.”

Official AOCFEST hotel partners – Marriott at Research Triangle Park, Aloft Hotel, Unscripted Hotel Durham, Cambria Hotel, The Durham Hotel and 21C Museum Hotel Durham -- are offering special AOCFEST rates and packages available on a first-come first-served basis.  RFID wristbands will be used for show entry this year. AOCFEST merchandise is already available on the website and will be available for purchase onsite.

For more details, visit www.aocfestival.comand follow Art of Cool Festival on Facebook, and AOCFEST on TwitterandInstagram.


The DOME Group, LLCis a trusted producer of live entertainment events, including top-billed concerts and music festivals for both urban and mainstream markets since 2007. Headed up by husband and wife team Sulaiman and Lesleigh Mausi, The DOME Group owns and operates the Durham NC-based Art of Cool Festival. With two regional offices in the U.S., The DOME Group LLC provides programming for some of the most state-of-the-art venues including The Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre, Greensboro Coliseum, Durham Performing Arts Center as well as Chevitz Arena in St. Louis, MO. The company also books major artists for university homecoming shows, community events and for corporate clients.