Grammy Nominated Artist Anthony David Joins Ed Garnes Sweet Tea Ethics College Tour
Edward M. Garnes, Jr. coined Anthony David “the Bill Withers of hip-hop soul” well over a decade ago. In the time following his penning of David’s print debut, the respected scribe and genre-blurring soul man have forged a bond based on mutual respect and a deep love of the arts. Now, the talented artists joining forces for an unabashed series of campus dialogues entitled Sweet Tea Ethics. Specifically targeting college students, the interactive sessions will confront hot bed issues and also feature lively freestyles on topics posed by audience members. Official tour dates TBA.
“I think Ed and I are very much aligned in terms of art playing a part in documenting our history. That aspect of what I do with my music paired with his scholarship makes a force that I’m proud to be a part of. I look forward to drawing a more realistic and complex picture of our legacy for young people coming up, ” says David, a Grammy nominated artist whose songs in the key of life bump in the ipods of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama who often name drop the Savannah bred soul troubadour in interviews.
Fueled by an uncanny mix of observational humor and candid social commentary, the college tour transforms grandma folk tales, personal experiences, and sobering life lessons into practical strategies for personal development and real world application.
“Sweet Tea Ethics is anchored in truth telling, Anthony’s work has always been about the heart, psyche, and social dilemmas of common folks. Like many great storytellers, his work is essentially oral history worthy of prodigious study. His work has been a staple on my Spelman syllabus the past few years. Through solution focused dialogue, we hope to inspire a new generation of artists/thinkers to put down payments on their own dreams,“ says Garnes, founder of From Afros To Shelltoes, a community based collective focused on using the arts to bridge generation gaps between youth, elders, and Hip-Hop heads.
Far beyond lectures and canned speeches, SWEET TEA ETHICSsm operates as an open forum exploring love, life, and soul. Mixing the reasoning sessions of the local barbershop and fervor of street corner theologians, the inter-generational talks cover a wide range of topics including manhood, black love, bridging generation gaps, and the cross cultural appeal of hip hop. This college edition of theSWEET TEA ETHICS tour not only confronts the cultural divide of elders and hip hop heads, but it also challenges clichéd visions of leadership and formal education.
Sweet Tea Ethics has featured a wide array of visionaries including brothers Clifton West & Dr. Cornel West, visual artist Fahamu Pecou, hip hop artist Killer Mike, CNN financial analyst Clyde Anderson, and celebrity stylist Spry Lee Scott. The series has garnered high praise for its straight no chaser approach to solution focused reasoning and has been featured on WEAC Love860, allhiphop.com, hiphopwired.com, mauricegarland.com and captured by famed photographers Shannon McCollum (shannonmccollum.com) & Ken Gordon ( kengordonphotograpy.com).
“Here is the significance of my dear brother Ed Garnes, Jr. and (From Afros To Shelltoes’) Sweet Tea Ethics. There is no other group in Atlanta that can bring together such engaged, high quality, and substantial dialogue about the crucial issues facing not just the black community, but also American society. He writes well, works hard and revels in the life of the mind. Thank God for brother Ed Garnes, Jr., “ says Dr. Cornel West, Professor of Philosophy and Christian Practice at Union Theological Seminary.
To book the Sweet Tea Ethics college tour, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
PRAISE FOR FROM AFROS TO SHELLTOES (F.A.T.S) & SWEET TEA ETHICS
“Sweet Tea Ethics was a reveling in love, connection, purpose, and life. It was an association and affiliation of like heartedness that will hopefully be a launching pad for good things to come.” –Clifton West respected music producer
“If what Ed Garnes has done in regards to… hip hop discussions and social events, for impact, is an appetizer or minute representation of From Afros to Shelltoes, I don’t know if I am ready for a full plate of what this service/ministry provides.” –Christopher “Play” Martin of Kid ‘N Play
“Brother Garnes work is cornerstone to our youth. A balance of our culture as it stands within American Culture is pivotal in positive youth development. From Afros to Shelltoes is the bridge between generations for our folks. Black America must understand our ancestors, embrace our social and cultural factors, Be Bop, Hip Hop, conservative, liberal, black and more…Black Arts embraced, appreciated and loved.“–Dr. Carl S. Taylor Professor, Department of Sociology Michigan State University; Senior Fellow, University Outreach and Engagement; Bergstrom International Fellow, Tufts University
“From Afros to Shelltoes shows that this generation is not lost, and we recognize we have a history. We understand that our cultural identity and survival is not determined solely on what we do now, but how that connects us with who have been and who we are becoming as a people.”–Jessica Care Moore Poet, Apollo Legend, Publisher Moore Black Press
“Sweet Tea Ethics is as culturally profound as the Japanese tea ceremonies because it goes back to traditions of how we were raised in the south. Ed Garnes’ writing, teaching, and community work with From Afros To Shelltoes is very relevant, very hip hop, and a very important bridge from our past to today’s sensibilities. His brilliance is committed to the values of our people in the most warm and accessible manner. –stic.man of dead prez
“There is no movement that epitomizes the thoughts, dreams, and disillusionment of my generation better than From Afros to Shelltoes (F.A.T.S). For every young Black person that’s closer to 30 than 25, too grown for 106 & Park, but still too young for the Tom Joyner crowd, F.A.T.S is our leading voice. With their exciting mix of wit, insight, and just plain old ‘real talk,’ F.A.T.S gives voice to a generation that wants to build on the future, while learning from the mistakes of the past. If my kids are reading about From Afros to Shelltoes in their history books in 20 years, I wouldn’t be surprised.”–Phonte Coleman of The Foreign Exchange
About From Afros To Shelltoes (F.A.T.S)
Inter-generational in scope, FATS’ cultural productions fearlessly bridge generation gaps between youth, elders, and hip hop heads. Side stepping traditional visions of leadership, From Afros To Shelltoes remixes popular education, southern grandma tales, and good old common sense into a progressive series of cultural programs advocating practical strategies for social change, personal development, and emotional healing.
The brainchild and personal mantra of award winning writer/community activist Edward. M. Garnes, Jr., FATS is a community arts collective delivering educational, counseling, and event planning services, namely, identity focused workshops, panels, townhall meetings, seminars, and artist residencies.
Be it fashioning hip hop centered programming for the National Black Arts Festival, training and placing over 700 college students throughout New Orleans, Mississippi, and Alabama as organizers of the alternative spring break Katrina on the Ground, or bum rushing stages with the likes of Nikki Giovanni, The Last Poets, and Spike Lee we are about the business of solutions. For booking, hit us email@example.com
FATS has collaborated with a myriad of artists and leaders including:
Amiri Baraka, Nikki Giovanni, Spike Lee, The Last Poets, Joie Lee, Dead Prez, Luis Rivera, Jessica Care Moore, Killer Mike, Fahamu Pecou, Faith Evans, Shannon McCollum, Anthony David, Nappy Roots, Tony Rich
FATS Clients (Selected): Dave Chappelle’s Block Party, MTV Jams, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Atlantic Records, National Urban Leauge, 21st Century Foundation, Morehouse College, National Black Arts Festival, Fulton County Arts Council, Katrina On The Ground, Hands On Atlanta
About Edward M. Garnes, Jr.
“Ed Garnes is a leader equipped with the courage, resilience, and dedication to take us to the next level.” –Dr. Joseph White, noted psychologist and author of Black Men Emerging
Atlanta native Edward M. Garnes, Jr. is an award winning journalist, counselor, educator, editor, producer, and activist. He is the founder of From Afros to Shelltoes, a community based organization uniquely focused on cultural productions that bridge generation gaps between youth, elders, and the hip hop community. The Atlanta Tribune Man Of Distinction holds a B.A. in English Writing from DePauw University and a M.A. in Counseling from Michigan State University where he studied as a Competitive Fellow in Urban Counseling. Recently honored as Chozen Awards 2011 Motivator of the Year, Garnes currently serves as an Adjunct Professor of Public Speaking at Spelman College.
Garnes’ seminal essay, ” Sweet Tea Ethics: Black Luv, Healthcare, and Cultural Mistrust,” appears in Not In My Family: AIDS in the African American Community , a 2007 NAACP Image Award nominated collection edited by Gil Robertson. Garnes’ film and television credits include Finally Sayin’ What I Really Mean, a feature length music documentary featuring Jill Scott, Common, and Saul Williams, and the Black Family Channel’s Spoken, a poetry program hosted and produced by Jessica Care Moore. As a highly sought after commentator on hip hop, black identity, manhood, and popular culture, Garnes has appeared on the Fox’s MY TV Network, Sirius Radio, CBS Radio, and allhiphop.com.
Revered for his work as a literary artist, Garnes has opened for icons Nikki Giovanni, Amiri Baraka, and The Last Poets. A longtime music contributor to Creative Loafing, he has profiled and interviewed such cutting edge artists as Spike Lee, Outkast, Gerald Levert, Erykah Badu, Divinity Roxx, Raphael Saadiq, T-Boz(TLC) and DMC (Run DMC). A finalist for the Fulton County Arts Council Dialog Literary Fellowship, Garnes was honored during the 2004 National Black Arts Festival with an installation featuring his classic poem “Contemplation Of A Looter Somewhere In The USA.”
In 2005, Garnes was elected Co-Chair of the National Black Arts Festival’s Next Generation Committee conceiving and curating the Cultural Continuum, a three-day multi-media programming series highlighted by From Afros To Shelltoes’ Cornbread Consortium featuring Grammy award winning and nominated artists Faith Evans and Anthony David.
Noted for his groundbreaking work in African-centered psychology and identity development with From Afros to Shelltoes, Garnes served as the counselor in residence and a major organizer of students and volunteers of Katrina on the Ground, an alternative Spring Break initiative which sent over 700 students to devastated areas of the Gulf Region.
A recognized expert in black male development, Garnes launched the State of Black Men Tour with Kevin Powell in 2004 and has worked as consultant for Men Stopping Violence, The National Urban League, and 21 st Century Foundation. Garnes has also worked as a diversity and leadership development consultant for the Washington D.C. firm Woodard & Associates executing projects with the US Department of Agriculture and the US Department of Housing & Urban Development.
On the forefront of institutional change, he co-founded DePauw University’s Student Coalition for Awareness, Revolution and Education (S.C.A.R.E.) and assisted university administration and legal counsel in the drafting of DePauw’s formal Hate Crime Policy.
Garnes is currently penning In Search of Dr. Garnes, a provocative book of essays on black leadership, hip-hop, and higher education. Garnes is the owner of Babuke Brothers, LLC, a media relations, entertainment, and arts programming firm.
About Anthony David
In a time where genres and categories bleed into one another and morph into new hybrids, there will always be a space for the pure singer/songwriter who can address real life emotions in real time. Men will always need someone to express their emotive side, and women will always need to hear it. Humans will always need to feel, and artists are here to identify those feelings and paint pictures of sound with them. Since the release of his first album in 2004, Anthony David has consistently been the man for that job, and has continually pushed forward and expanded.
Raised in Savannah GA, Anthony made the move to ATL, and hit the ground running in the local music scene. He found a long time friend and music collaborator in a then unknown India Arie, and became a part of her success. Writing and producing on her first 3 albums yielded grammies and numerous other awards, while he also toured singing backup for her. Arie pushed him to the front by her 2nd tour, having Anthony open up for her across the country, which led to a deal with Local Independent label, BRASH MUSIC.
At BRASH, David wrote and co produced 2 critically acclaimed albums, “3 chords and the truth” and “Red Clay Chronicles”, which also secured deals in Europe (Dome Records) and Japan (Village Again), leading Anthony to tour worldwide several times over, making new fans along the way. The acclaim prompted Universal Republic record to get involved, compiling the best songs from the two indie albums, repackaging them as ACEY DUECY. The added exposure took the single “Words”, a duet with Arie to chart placement, andnomination for a GRAMMY in ’08. It was also the album that exposed the First lady, Michelle Obama, to Anthony’s talent, who then brought him to the attention of the President himself, Barack Obama, who name checked Anthony as a constant on his iPod.
For the next album, “As above, so below” David inked a deal with E1/Purpose records and travelled to Nashville to work with producer Shannon Sanders. They produced Anthony’s best record to date, pushing the boundaries, and expanding on what people have come to expect from R&B. Taking on political topics (Reach Ya), Religious (God Said), with his trademark storytelling(Backstreet) still in tow, and razor sharp. The leading single, “4evermore” stormed the radio and gave Anthony his first #1 record, while the reggae/latin tinged “Body Language” tore up dance floors all across the UK. A tour to Kenya, inspired Anthony to become a part of the “Give Africa Hope” campaign that brought awareness to the East Africa famine. During that period, David wrote and released 3 new songs along with remixes from “As Above, so below”, shooting the video in Kenya for the title track“#Locationlocationlocation”. The tune was a homage to Carl Sagan’s “pale blue dot” and also a plea to share the resources of the planet. He also got intimately involved with AWOL (All Walks of life) an arts program for children back in his hometown of Savannah, pushing to get it established in Atlanta by 2013.
Currently in production for his fourth studio album, titled “Love Out Loud”, Anthony David constantly pushes the boundaries, and broadens peoples expectation from both him, and the community he represents. “I’ve never been one to shy away from titles, boxes, whatever you wanna call em, but I will EXPAND those boxes” is a quote that Anthony lives by. From day one it’s always been about consistency for David, and he continues to provide what people expect from him in as many ways as he is able. Raw, honest, pure, music from and for the soul.