Burning Bush Festival: a tipping point

Marcus McDonald

By Marcus McDonald

Adesso Entertainment has two huge projects coming up almost simultaneously. The first one being Burning Bush Festival February 27th-29th; a three-day mixed genre concert series featuring full scale art exhibition and several vendors. Our second major upcoming project is Clayton James’s Rise and Shine Tour taking place February 28th-March 10th. I’ll be giving y'all a recap on the latter in the coming weeks.

I’m super excited to have an instrumental part in this upcoming festival. The idea to put on an event of this magnitude was born over brunch one morning after seeing Semkari, a very popular Hip-Hop artist on the Adesso team, packing out a venue full of people the night before.

We had done several run-of-the-mill events in Charleston, but felt like we needed to push the envelope and do what we’ve been doing on a bigger scale. Our past shows have featured live music, art and fashion. We also have a tendency to donate a portion of our funds to charitable causes.

The rest played itself out, and we joined forces with Jillian at Pabst Blue Ribbon, and Nicky Samuels and Taylor Czerwinski at 9-5 Magazine to put together an incredible program of diverse acts. I could tell you about the event, but I figured it would be best to hear from some of the incredible artists involved: Amy Hill and Jakari Mincey.

Amy is putting together a full-scale art exhibit titled “The Meltdown,” which will be almost solely made of recycled plastic bags. A recent graduate of College of Charleston, she has a wide range of artistic ability and felt restricting herself to oil-based abstracts wouldn’t give her creative expression the freedom it deserved.

The inspiration for her most recent and avant-garde piece comes from finding solace within the local visual and performing arts community amid feelings of isolation that come from adulthood, especially in such tumultuous global times. While coming together in events like this, she thinks it’s a perfect time to raise awareness — and funds — for causes that matter like environmentalism and gender/race equality. It’s worth noting there are similar events your local soccer moms and lawyer dads organize that rake in tens of thousands of dollars.

The unique thing about these events is that the people who are putting them together and performing at them are working hourly jobs or are full-time musicians or visual artists who treat every gig and commission like nuggets of gold. Amy hopes to unify the attendees of this festival and the general public by forming a collective bond through her art. Semkari, a performing artist and co-curator of the event, has similar goals in mind for Burning Bush Festival.

Jakari wants to change the world via environmental planning and political action. His vision is to use these events as a platform to have a larger impact on his community. He aims to become a deciding political leader because both local and national politicians are the ones who make the final decisions regarding laws that affect our environment and us as individuals daily. His excitement comes from witnessing the momentum that’s been building in Charleston, the anticipated outcome of this event, and the legacy itleaves on the Charleston DIY scene. With such a powerful and thought-provoking team behind it, we can’t wait to show Charleston what we have in store.

Burning Bush Festival will be an experience to remember not only for its impact on the local scene, but the lives of people we probably will never meet on the other side of the planet. For more information, please see the event page on our website or follow these handles on Instagram: @Semkari @Amyhhart @adessoent