• Leonard Webb

Boston Art & Music Soul Festival (BAMS)– New England’s Premier Arts & Music Festival!

Updated: Jun 12, 2019

By Samantha Williams, Sr. Contributing Writer

Imagine, 19 performers, 2 large stages, and a day full of music, fun, hugs, and love! All at no charge! New England, you do not want to miss Boston’s leading art and music festival,

Franklin Park will host the 2nd annual Boston Art & Music Soul (BAMS) Festival on Saturday, June 22nd, at Franklin Park’s Playstead Field. New to the event this year is a Dance Pavilion, which was created by Racines Black Dance Festival. Inside the Beat Feet Zone there will be 4 minority choreographers providing FREE DANCE LESSONS! Once you kick off your dancing shoes, bring your own game (B.Y.O.G.), and relax under the Tented Zone, enjoying fun games of dominos, spades, checkers, and other activities with Festival attendees. Attendees are also invited to tour the Live Art Zone, and view the “Rep Your City” exhibit, which features large art canvases, created by local high school students. Through these canvases, students demonstrate the pride they feel for their local communities, as they rep where they are from.

The BAMS Festival provides activities, events, and more for all age groups. After sampling delicious food from the food trucks, observe a variety of performances, such as dancing, spoken word, beatbox, and more from local, regional, and national talent. This year’s artists and performers are from a variety of locations. In addition to the 10 Massachusetts-based artists, performers also come from New York, Connecticut, California, New Jersey, Illinois, Alabama, and Pennsylvania. Eric Roberson, also known as the “King of Independent Soul/R&B,” will be this year’s headliner.

Catherine Morris founded the BAMS Festival through her 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, BAMS Fest, Inc. Morris stated, “the vision of BAMS Fest, Inc. is to create a diverse and inclusive commonplace for Greater Boston’s recording, performing, and visual artists of color, to use their artistic talents in a manner that changes societal perception, and empowers and engages audiences of color to convene.” BAMS Fest accomplishes this vision through the BAMS Festival, which is an annual art and music Festival that includes live visual arts and music performances. BAMS Fest, Inc.

Morris stated, “I know my city’s capabilities and the time is now for me to do this, based on my experiences. It takes grit and stamina, and I’m fighting for the cause!” Morris continued, “I do this because people need love, great music, and they need to learn how to laugh again.”

Morris has as a 10-year plan for the BAMS Festival, which includes growing it to a two-day, event with 8 stages, and more than 20,000 attendees. Once she accomplishes her goal, Morris will place the BAMS Festival in the hands of a new leader to oversee the next generation of the Festival.

Although the BAMS Festival is Morris’ career passion, her love and life’s work is being a mom to her son, Stafford. Morris proclaimed, “I’m a mom first!” This is a message that may resonate with many career women who also are known simply as, mom.

The BAMS Festival is made possible through supporters and sponsors, which include Berklee College of Music, the Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture Boston, and The Boston Foundation.

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