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About Me

My name is April Hawthorne and I represent Musikal Visions Photography. I am a huge fan of live music and love all genres of music from reggae, dancehall, hip hop, r&b, soul, jazz, blues, dub step...the list goes on. I am a photographer specializing in concert settings and live music. I also love capturing moments of people and nature that I am surrounded in. I am in love with photography and want to share my love with other people thru my eyes and the camera's lens.

Much respect to for allowing me a space to share my love of photography and my photos from all the live music in MPLS!

Damian Marley & Nas @ First Avenue [Pictures & Review]
Written by April 'Musikal Visions'   

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Damian Marley & Nas @ First AvenueDamian Marley & Nas graced the First Avenue stage for the second time celebrating their release of Distant Relatives. The house was packed and the energy in the crowd was amazing. Everyone showed up for this show, local DJ's and artists and musicheads alike, especially if they were lucky enough to see them the last time. Only these fans had a taste of what was to come. Nas and Damian performed for the crowd singing/rapping songs from Distant Relatives with a full band, and it wouldn't be complete without the rasta flag being waved the entire show! Several songs from Distant Relatives were performed and each artist would break into their own hits every few songs. The crowd got to enjoy some classics from both while singing along to all their new songs from the recent release. My favorite song of the night by the duo was "Count your blessings". Nas was accompanied by a solo drum bongo player for "One Mic" and the performance was amaaazing! Damian's performance of "Jamrock" could not be topped. 2 hours of energy flowed out into the crowd with no breaks...just hit after hit from both artists. The night was complete with a few Bob Marley classics...a few that I remember are "Could you be loved" and "Exodus". What an amazing performance from 2 legends of the hip hop and reggae. JAH! Rastafari!

Bayfront Reggae Fest (2K10) [Pictures]
Written by April 'Musikal Visions'   

Bayfront Reggae Fest (2K10) Pictures

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ENERGIZE! (JUNE 2K10) [Pictures & Review]
Written by April 'Musikal Visions'   

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ENERGIZE JUNE 2K10 @ FIRST AVENUE RECORD ROOMEnergize, Friday June 26th, 2010. Sound of Fujun in the mix 100% MADDDD!!! Reggae, dancehall, hip hop, soca...good tunes, good vibes!

Finally, the last Friday of the month arrived and Sound of Fujun graced the Record Room @ First Ave spinning the best music in town. The energy was IRIE!!...lots of people dancing and enjoying the vibes. I got there early and the night was pretty chill. I like to get in and get a spot to kick back so I can hear the music the DJ spins early on. If you're one of the people arriving're missing out! There was a lot of good hip-hop mixed in this week, and, like always, I was impressed with Fujun's mix! As the night passed the room got packed with more familiar faces. The energy was fiyaaah! More people, more smoke, and more smiles. First Avenue is always a good place to see familiar faces, enjoy a good, strong drink by the best bartenders in MPLS, and dance to the best in dancehall, reggae, and hip hop. If you haven't been, you better be there for the next Energize. The last Friday of the month in The Record Room.

If you're hungry check out First Ave's new bar/restaurant The Depot. It's a nice extension of First Ave and although I haven't made it there yet, I heard the food is amazing! (And you can't go wrong with the First Avenue family!)

Major Lazer Invades First Avenue [Pictures & Review]
Written by April 'Musikal Visions'   

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MUSIKAL VISIONS: MAJOR LAZER w/ RUSKO @ FIRST AVEMajor Lazer invaded Minneapolis on Sunday night with a show that was straight fiyah! I wasn't sure what to expect and when I arrived at First Ave I was confused at the crowd. I mentioned to my girl Melissa that all the people looked like little Diplo's running around. It definitely was not the typical reggae crowd that shows up to reggae shows. I wondered to these people even listen to dancehall music? Do they know what the dancehall culture is all about? How are they going to dance to this music? Well, I was pleasantly surprised by the energy of the crowd. Opening up for Major Lazer was Rusko. I had heard that he was recently released under Mad Decent and that he was dub-step. I was not aware of what dub step music was but when the beat dropped I was so in love. The bass in the music permeated my whole body and all I could feel was vibration running thru me. The crowd was in the palm of Ruskos hand as soon as he dropped the first song. The energy was off the hook. At one poiont Rusko even mentioned that the crowd was banannas and proceeded to throw banannas into the audience. He is now one of my favorite DJ's and his energy cannot be matched by any DJ I've seen perform. Needless to say, I am now a big fan of dub step music. :) Major Lazer came up next, and although I thought it would be hard to exceed the energy of Ruskos set, Major Lazer brought all the energy right back into the building. Diplo was surrounded by lasers the entire his own little pyramid of sound. There were a few jamaican dancers, Skerrit Bwoy and another female dancer. There was a whole lot of daggering going on! lol. They started out the set with some dancehall songs to get the crowd hyped. "Click my fingers" was one of the jams that I enjoyed in the set. After the crowd was warmed up they played all the Major Lazer jams and blew the roof of the building. At one point the dancers went and grabbed a ladder. Now if you've seen the "Pon di Floor" video you know what happened next. Skerrit Bwoy proceeded to climb the ladder, loosen up his belt buckle, pull down his pants and jumped off of the ladder and on top of the female dancer and started working her. It was then the females turn to return the favor...she climbed the ladder, jumped off, and worked him while acting like she was applying make-up. I guess he couldn't hang. The energy between the two was very entertaining. At one point the female dancer even grabbed a young man from the audience and gave him something to remember. It was an awesome performance from Major Lazer and was one of the bests concerts I've seen. After the show in the mainroom the party moved up to the Record Room at First Ave. Diplo came up and spun some good music until closing. The energy at the afterparty was still crazy with Skerrit Bwoy standing on the speakers and keeping the crowd crunk. This concert was definitely an experience. From the extreme bass that Rusko brought with his dub step music to the dancing and off the chain energy of Major Lazer this will be a night that will not be forgotten. I left asking myself..."What just happened?" It was a crazy fun night!

Posted on April 15, 2010 by April H. for Musikal Visions Photography

Vices to Verses at Cabooze [Pictures & Review]
Written by April 'Musikal Visions'   

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MUSIKAL VISIONS: VICES TO VERSES @ CABOOZEVices to Verses: A New Era of Hip & Action was a conference at the U of M "featuring workshops, performances, discussions, and educational events centered around how hip hop pedagogy, activism and culture can educate, empower and transform communities." The 3 days of the conference included "I Used to Love H.E.R: Bring back the Love, exploring hip hop feminism and women's roles in hip hop culutre. Day 2 focused on "Remixing Borders, Transcending Boundaries", focusing on using hip hop as a tool to create unity. Day 3 titled "Us", focused on hip hop's power to heal and transform individuals and communites. The conference also included a live concert that took place at the Cabooze. The guests featured Dead Prez and also included Ill Chemistry, Toki Wright, Maria Isa, PosNoSys, the Tru Ruts crew and many others. The energy and people of this night were simply amazing. The highlights for me was Ill Chemistry, they blew the roof off of The Cabooze and captivated the audience with their amazing energy and perfromance. Maria Isa was on fire for her performance and sang all my favorite songs, she was accompied by drums and an MC that ripped the mic. Sabreena da Witch was someone I had never heard of but her voice and energy were simply amazing!!! She sang in Arabic and her voice was out of this world. Dead Prez were the final act and brought the crowd together instantly. Their revolutionary music was on point that night, and they sang all my favorite songs celebrating 10 years of their first cd "Let's get Free". My favorite songs of the evening were "They Schools", "Mind Sex", and the classic hip hop song "It's bigger than Hip Hop". The crowd was invited to join the stage during the performance of "It's bigger than Hip Hop" and celebrated the conference and what it stood for. They ended the night with the crowd on stage all singing together..Al Greens "Let's Stay Together". It was an amazing night, full of great people and an energy that cannot be matched.

Posted on April 15, 2010 by April w/ Musikal Visions Photography