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The Saint Paul GetDown fosters artistic potential

Updated: Aug 21, 2023

(Photo courtesy of Catherine DeCelle)

The Saint Paul GetDown is a three part hip hop concert series curated by Frogtown Community Radio in collaboration with St. Paul Parks and Rec and the Twin Cities Mobile Jazz Unit. The series presents young musicians between the ages of 14 and 24 the opportunity to open up for a well-known artist. The final concert in the series takes place on August 18 at Harriet Island Regional Park.

Executive Director of Frogtown Community Radio Katharine DeCelle says investing in the potential and visions of young people can have a transformative impact on their lives and self esteem. She says while rap isn’t her personal form of artistry, she can relate to the impact of being given a shot to take the next step. She says providing young artists with support and exposure can be life changing, no matter the artistic endeavor.

“If I was given an opportunity, as a 14 to 24 year old to come on the radio or, or to do a news story, that would be something that I would never forget. It would stick with me for a really long time. Hopefully, these young musicians who are performing on Friday will have this experience, and that it will propel them to go further in their interests and art.”

The GetDown series held auditions in the spring; 50 young artists applied to fill six performance slots. Applicants were chosen based on the quality of their music and their level of experience. DeCelle says it is eye opening to see the creative drive of these young people. She says many of them are pursuing their dreams with minimal support.

“These young musicians are so amazing. A lot of them have produced and written their music. Some of them do it on their phones, some of them have built recording studios in their homes. So seeing all the things that people can do with not even a lot of equipment, and how great the quality of their art is, is really fantastic. Having other people see that is really, really awesome.”

The GetDown lineup consists of 5immea, Goldilock, H Tha Dreamer, Jae Munnee, YGB Boogie, and Skippy Stone. The six musicians will showcase their skills as they open for rising star NUR-D. DeCelle says that she hopes these artists can take this moment to recognize their potential.

“I hope they're taking from this experience that they can do whatever they want. That they can make their dreams come true, if this is what they want to do. That they have the opportunities and the skills to go out there and make music and put themselves out in front of a crowd of people, which is not easy to do. Especially a live audience with a lot of people.”

The St. Paul GetDown concert takes place at Harriet Island Regional Park on August 18 from 6-10pm. Admission is free. Food trucks and other vendors will be on site.

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