Aloe Blacc gets patriotic with The Roots for 4th of July Jam

Blacc is just one of the many performers on the Fourth in Philadephia. Prior to the main stage, up-and-coming regional talent and locals, including the Phosphenes, Donn T, Mozaic Flow, Al 1 Thing and Brianna Cash, play the Questlove stage on the Parkway from noon to 6 p.m. / FilmMagic
Blacc is just one of the many performers on the Fourth in Philadephia. Prior to the main stage, up-and-coming regional talent and locals, including the Phosphenes, Donn T, Mozaic Flow, Al 1 Thing and Brianna Cash, play the Questlove stage on the Parkway from noon to 6 p.m. / FilmMagic

Barbecues, block parties, fireworks — it’s how many of us celebrate the Fourth of July.

Yet for rising star Aloe Blacc, who is featured in the annual Philly 4th of July Jam on the Parkway starring The Roots, the barbecues and fireworks of his youth in Southern California meant just a little something extra for him and his family.

“My parents and my family are from Panama,” Blacc says. “[The Fourth of July] was a special moment because they were celebrating being American and having that experience of coming to this country to make a better life for themselves and their family.”

Blacc, the voice of Avicii’s 2013 heavy rotation hit “Wake Me Up,” was born Egbert Nathaniel Dawkins III.

“My parents … didn’t have a Civil Rights movement, so black folks had trouble getting jobs,” Blacc says. “There was a lot of discrimination all throughout Central and South America, and still is. They came to the U.S. where they’re obviously socially forward and getting with the times and being respectful to humanity.”

It’s been a big 12 months for Blacc, from the exposure of “Wake Me Up” to his current hit, the stirring and soulful “The Man.”

“‘Wake Me Up’ was a huge opportunity to introduce my voice and my songwriting to a lot of people and it was a great way to follow up with that,” says Blacc.

He first emerged as a rapper and scored a minor hit with 2010’s “I Need a Dollar,” which was used as the theme song for HBO’s “How to Make It in America.” And now he’s playing with The Roots backing him. Looks like he has made it in America.

 

Joining in the Jam

The Jam will be broadcast live on VH1 and Palladia, and it is — not hyperbolically — being billed as the largest free concert in America.

The lineup includes The Roots, now the house band for “The Tonight Show,” Nicki Minaj, Jennifer Hudson, Ed Sheeran and Ariana Grande, who until this summer you may have known as star of Nickelodeon’s “Sam & Cat,” but is making a different name for herself with “Problems” her collaboration with Iggy Azalea.

 

Philly 4th of July Jam and Fireworks
Friday, 7-11 p.m.
Broadcast at 8 p.m. on VH1 and Palladia.tv
Ben Franklin Pkwy., from 20th Street to Eakins Oval
Free
www.welcomeamerica.com



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.