Michael Franti & Spearhead

Michael Franti & Spearhead

BandRock

In a departure from the noise of the Beatnigs and Disposable Heroes and minimalism of early Spearhead, Franti's lyrics are now set to swelling rock chords, reggae, dancehall, hip hop, funk with a nod to Clash, U2, and classic soul from Stax. Franti's revolution has never been this funky.

Biography

**New Studio Album "Yell Fire" due out JANUARY 2006
**New Film Documentary of Franti's journey to Iraq, Palestine and Israel "I Know I'm Not Alone" in theaters FEBRUARY 2006 www.iknowimnotalone.com

**Franti's 7th Annual Free Music & Arts Festival Power To The Peaceful, GG Park, SF, CA, Sat. Sept 10, 2005 www.powertothepeaceful.org

2003 Studio Album-Everyone Deserves Music:

Perhaps Franti's best album in an accomplished career, Everyone Deserves Music's 12 fully realized songs mark a kind of a personal and musical turning point. Together, they have an effect that is nothing short of revelatory. From the shimmering opening chords of the personal manifesto, "What I Be," to the poignant coda of the call-for-unity, "Crazy Crazy Crazy," Franti spans the personal and political with grace, depth, and beauty. If the times have been marked by tension and fear, Franti offers compassion and release. "Even our worst enemies," he sings on the title track, "deserve music."

In nearly two decades in music making, Franti has grown from a black-booted voice of youthful rage into a barefoot clarion for social justice. In 1986, Franti formed the Beatnigs, whose black industrial sound deconstructed punk rock and Reaganism with a leather-jacketed "No!" to militarism, racism and compromise. By 1992, Franti and Beatnig member Rono Tse became the Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy with multi-instrumentalist Charlie Hunter (who has since become a renowned jazz guitarist). Their album Hypocrisy Is The Greatest Luxury delivered assaulting Public Enemy-inspired beats and rhymes, but also offered naked songs like the self-probing "Socio-Genetic Experiment" and the movement-mantric "Music and Politics". Franti toured with U2, recorded with William Burroughs, and became a protest music icon.

His next step defied expectations. In 1994, he signed to Capitol Records for his new band, Spearhead, and dove headfirst into his blackness, mixing up Mayfield and Marley, Scott-Heron and Scarface on hits like "Hole In The Bucket,” "People In the Middle" and "Ganja Babe." Home and Chocolate Supa Highway sold hundreds of thousands of copies and Spearhead became a worldwide phenomenon.

But by 1999, Franti had retreated from the major-label treadmill to re-center his music and politics. He returned the following year as an organizer and cultural worker tied to the rising movements against the death penalty, the prison-industrial complex and corporate globalization, voicing his observations through his music. 2000's Stay Human, co-released on his own indie label Boo Boo Wax and Six Degrees, was a statement on justice and survival, touching on issues like media monopolization and incarceration. With songs like "Sometimes" and "Every Single Soul," Franti displayed a new side. This was a vulnerable, articulate and expansive voice unafraid to embrace differences and envision the possibilities of another world, but also not fearful of speaking loud and on the edge of pacifism with the clobbering beats and lyric of the song "Rock The Nation."

With the onset of family life and the climate of militarism, Franti has found a confident new voice and it shows. On songs like the simple, spare "Never Too Late," Franti reflects on fatherhood, life and untimely death in a voice supple and warm enough to carry his message. And his message now? "Half the record is songs about what's happening in the world right now, and the other half is about how we cope with it as people who are concerned about what's going on," he says. "This spectre of war, intimidation, this nation vs. the rest of the world, it wears us out. Half the record is ahealthy dose of venting anger about that, and the other half is about how do we hold on to our spirituality, our community and our connectedness to each other."

Musically, Everyone Deserves Music represents the most connected, developed work Franti has ever done. He composed many of the songs from the guitar up, and, like fellow 21st century cultural globalists Manu Chao and Ozomatli, continues to synthesize his eclectic influences. In a departure from the noise of the Beatnigs and Disposable Heroes and the minimalism of early Spearhead, Franti's affirming lyrics are now set to appropriately swelling rock chords, while keeping a 21st century world-wise groove, nodding towards reggae, dancehall, bossa nova, Afrobeat, and funk. Anthems like the title track "Everyone Deserves Music," "Yes I Will" and "Bomb The World" are constructed with a nod to the '80s rock of The Clash and U2, as well as classic soul from Stax and Motown. The wicked "We Don't Stop" (featuring the Gift of Gab from Blackalicious and Spearhead's rapper/beatbox technician Radioactive) even manages to bridge the two sounds in a “Magnificent Seven” style mash-up. And on "Love Why Did You Go Away" and "What I Be," Franti reveals an alluring, sensual singing voice. Two gems, "Pray For Grace" and "Bomb The World (Armageddon Version)" pair Franti with

Discography

The Beatnigs (self-titled)1992
Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy (self-titled) 1994
Home (Spearhead) 1996
Chocolate Supa Highway (Spearhead) 1998
Stay Human (Michael Franti & Spearhead) 2000
Live From The Baobab (Michael Franti) 2001
Everyone Deserves Music (Michael Franti & Spearhead) 2003
Songs From The Front Porch Acoustic (Michael Franti) 2003
Love Kamakazie Remixes (Michael Franti) 2004
Yell Fire (Michael Franti & Spearhead) 2006
I Know I'm Not Alone (FILM--Michael Franti) 2006

Set List

originals and 120min sets.