Top Five Must-See Phoenix Shows This Weekend
Ultimate Cross-Fader DJ Battle - Cyphers - Saturday, August 24
Think you're down with hip-hop culture? Okay, son, then which of its four elements -- be it rapping, b-boying, graf artistry, and turntablism -- is the most vital part of its mix? According to veteran local selector DJ Akshen, it's the latter, since the beats dropped from the decks help fuel everything else. "Without [DJs]," he says, "The other elements couldn't exist."
So strong are Akshen's beliefs in the importance of the wheels of steel in hip-hop culture that he's spent the past couple of years teaching turntablism courses over at Cyphers: The Center of Urban Arts, 9201 North 29th Avenue. A dip in enrollment in recent months is endangering the classes, but he's trying like hell to the curriculum from being scratched. He organized this weekend's Ultimate Cross-Fader DJ Battle and The Scratch Exchange, a pair of back-to-back competitions, to help raise funds to keep things going.
Both contests will involve local platter jocks and wax workers showcasing their skills and one-upping each other on Saturday, August 24, in pursuit of fame, glory, and primo rewards. --Benjamin Leatherman