Ikati Esengxoweni crowned as the 2018 Winners at AFROPUNK Battle Of The Bands competition. Picture by Mpumelelo Macu.

The Afropunk Festival is an annual arts festival that includes live music, film, fashion, and art produced by black artists. The festival made its first debut at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in 2005, and has since expanded around the world – to Paris, London and Atlanta and Johannesburg.
 
Beyond the constellation of large-scale live-music events, Afropunk is a worldwide community that is the engine of the global black experience, creating space and value for the intersections, embracing the plurality of our stories and individualities across borders and continents.

AFROPUNK Battle Of The Bands 2018 Finalist Sio. Picture by Mpumemelo Macu

Battle Of The Bands, an Afropunk challenge for unsigned acts to showcase their musical skills for a chance to perform on the main stage returns to Johannesburg. 

This initiative has launched various careers across the world, with acts using the platform as a stepping stone to realizing their dreams of becoming world-class performing artists. 

Now in its third instalment in South Africa, it has unearthed incredible musicians such as 2018 winners Red Robyn and Ikati Esengxoweni along with Automatic Live and Stiff Pap who won the competition in 2017. 

The winning band will be awarded with a distribution deal with Africa's premier artist development hub, Africori. With BOS Iced tea as the official sponsor, Afropunk and Africori will also host a two day seminar for the Battle of the Bands finalists prior to their shows, to help all finalists with tools they need to take their careers to the next level.

AFROPUNK Battle Of The Bands 2018 Winner: Red Robyn thanks fans for supporting her. Picture by Mpumelelo Macu.

Afropunk Joburg takes place at Constitution Hill on 30 and 31 December, under the theme "We See You", a message that brings together Afropunk’s ideology and the people who support it, under the banner of acknowledgment, and in resistance to those who strive to oppress.

Entries for local bands to enter the competition open on the 30th September, where they can submit their music on https://afropunk.com/festival/joburg/battle-of-the-bands/