By Natalie Pestun
Last night was the premiere of APK's "The Program" Monthly Series. Hosted at Coco 66, it provides an opportunity for rappers to make an intimate impression on their peers and audience. The venue supported a line up of the diverse group of artists who have already made strides for themselves in the industry. A deliberate notion of Daniel Navetta and his team to give emerging hip-hop talent a new space of their own without the pretenses that come with the culture. Daniel and I had a chat right before the opening act.
You are accomplished in the industry working with the likes of MTV and Vampire Weekend, what events led you in this direction?
When we started doing APK, we did a similar live performance series, called “Micro Shows,” with indie rock bands and it worked out really well. We created a gallery interactive space, an artist performed in the middle of the room, it would be filmed and it was an audience of 50 people, a little bit on the exclusive tip. Videos did well and it got us some recognition.
APK got involved with a rapper that we really like. I wanted to see him play Brooklyn and I felt like we could do that. It’s a community I've always identified with, growing up in New York, so I just felt like I wanted to see it happen here in Brooklyn and Brooklyn seemed ready for it. I didn't have the patience to wait for anyone else to do it the way I thought it should happen. So we started it up with some homies and we're gonna give it a real shot.
Can you tell me a little bit about “The Program” ?
The goal is just to have a consistent spot to go see good rap without dealing with some of the traditional pitfalls of the reputation that comes with throwing rap shows in NYC. It’s a place where rappers can perform and be seen without having to scavenge for a place to do that at. If the word gets around where you can go see new guys who are talented then great.
We want to create cool video stuff around each artist as part of it, because that is what we do during the daylight hours... is make video. Combine all the things we are interested in, because we have that type of control with our company.
Artists from last nights program
Mr. MFN Exquire
The Kid Daytona
Photo by: Sean Martin