May 11, 2019 marked a major milestone in the local hip-hop community, as thousands of fans and Manila urban lifestyle enthusiasts flocked to the Green Sun Hotel for the biggest event in Pinoy hip-jop—the first ever CALLE CON: Manila Urban Music & Fashion Festival.
Put together by the creative minds behind Rekta sa Kalye, Midas Music and Entertainment, and TMP Productions, Calle Con was envisioned to be more than just a music festival; it aimed to present Filipino hip-hop at a higher premium by giving local artists, entrepreneurs, and their community a proper venue to showcase their craft and passion. With over 2,000 attendees during the sold-out event, it’s safe to say that they achieved that goal.
A big part of the reason thousands of fans came out to Calle Con was to see some of the most respected hip-hop artists in the country take the stage, such as Gloc 9, Shanti Dope, Al James, Just Hush, Skusta Clee, Because, Pricetagg, Droppout & Rhyne, Bawal Clan, and many more. Each performance was met with an abundance of energy from the crowd, all moving to the same beat.
Some of our favorite performances of the night were of Shanti Dope, who was a recipient of an honorary spot on the Calle Con Hall of Fame as a Breakthrough Arist. Check out his performance of what once became the nation’s anthem, his hit single “Nadarang."
Not far behind was his mentor, Pinoy rap legend Gloc-9, who was also given a spot at the Calle Con Hall of Fame. Watch the blacksmith drop some bars in “Sumaway Ka” below:
Aside from the electrifying performances, another major highlight of the evening was the inducting of some of the pillars of Filipino hip-hop to the Calle Con Hall of Fame, namely legends Mike Swift, Mike Kosa, Nathan J., Lema Diaz, H-Town, Chinese Mafia, DJ MOD, Legit Misfitz, and Andrew E., as well as special awardee, Ex-Batallion, who have all paved the way for the local hip-hop artists of this generation.
Where did the fashion aspect come in? Well, it was during and in between performances where the best in local streetwear was given the spotlight through a fashion show. And if attendees were interested, they had over 60 local streetwear brands available for purchase at the merchants’ bazaars located upon entering Green Sun.
Calle Con 2019 has truly opened doors for hip-hop fans and artists all over the country, and this is just the beginning. The successful event is a testament of the passion and artistry of those who are part of the growing community, further proving that Pinoy hip-hop is very much alive and thriving.
Congratulations to all who have been a part of CALLE CON: Manila Urban Music & Fashion Festival's inaugural event!
Who's excited for Calle Con 2020? Comment below!
A Filipina born and raised in Saudi Arabia, Alyssa always has a story to tell. She is a writer by day, singer on occasion, ballerina by heart, and forever a musical theatre enthusiast. When she's not immersing herself in her Spotify playlists, you'll find her training to be a triathlete or being a full-time cool tita to her 9 nephews and nieces.