Tune In to Kam Franklin’s Pro-Voting Virtual Music Fest

Harris County’s record-breaking early-voting turnout is part of a nationwide pattern during this election season — and that’s something Kam Franklin wants to celebrate. On Oct. 27, the first-ever Kam Franklin and Friends virtual concert, debuting on YouTube at 7pm CST, doubles as a head-to-the-polls rally.


“Years ago, I had a vision to create and curate a music festival that served as an opportunity to launch more independent artists and more southern artists of color making original music,” says Franklin, the lead singer of Houston’s Gulf Coast-soul band The Suffers. “I would have no limitations to the genre, and I’d work with artists looking to grow and change the world together through the power of music.”

Her vision evolved as the pandemic took hold, and will now take place entirely online, exactly one week before election day. It will highlight and celebrate southern music, poetry and the importance of casting your vote. Franklin secured partnerships with HeadCount.org, which helped to register nearly half a million voters for the 2020 election, and Musik Houston, an online arts platform, for the event.

More than 25 artists from all over the region are on board for the free livestream event, including Houston rapper Fat Tony, electro-Cumbia outfit Gio Chamba, and soulful jazz singer Madeline Edwards. Between sets, there will be opportunities for viewers to check their voting status and research polling locations. And a portion of donations from the evening will benefit immigrant-supporting Raices Texas and Shape Community Center in Third Ward.

For her part, Franklin continues to leverage her and The Suffers’ growing popularity to champion the city of Houston and causes important to her. "In the past, I frequently brought up the lack of opportunity for independent artists in marginalized communities to people who didn't see or understand where the gap was,” she says. “This is me being the change I want to see. Even if this event is just a one-time thing, I feel good knowing that I did it because it might just encourage the next young artist who wants to see a bit more connection, camaraderie, and themselves in their music community.”

Check out a Spotify playlist of featured artists here, and tune in on Oct. 27 for the live performances. Official updates can be found via the Musik Houston website.

Art + Entertainment

READY TO MAKE some changes to your outdoor space? Want to create the backyard paradise you have been thinking of? Refresh your spring and summer setting with Brixos.

Keep Reading Show less

ENTREPRENEURIAL CHEF ADRIAN Perez, a budding actor, has cooked for the President and entertained the masses as a TV personality. In answering our influencer questionnaire, he gets deep about his life's struggles, the profound influence of strong women — and the best way to eat the entire Whataburger menu in one sitting.

Keep Reading Show less
People + Places

Filmmaker Marcus Pontello, also a social media provocateur, debuts 'Friday I'm in Love' this weekend. (photo from @marky_desade on Instagram)

THERE ARE FEW places in Houston as hallowed as Montrose's Numbers Nightclub. For nearly 50 years now, the nightclub, which started out as a risqué dinner theater in the late '70s before turning into a gay disco in the '80s and then into the dance club and live music venue it is today, has served as a safe haven for generations for Houstonian outliers and mainstreamers alike. And now, thanks to Houston-reared producer, director and fashion designer Marcus Pontello, 33, the venerated Houston nightlife staple is getting the silver screen treatment.

Keep Reading Show less
Art + Entertainment