Garden State Hip-Hop and Makin Waves Summer Rap ‘n’ Rock Tour will feature three groove-rock bands, four rap artists, three hip-hop bands or collectives and two DJs Friday, July 12 to Monday, July 22, throughout the Mid-Atlantic.

Rodney Coursey of Garden State Hip-Hop, concert promoter, music publicity and blogging and Bob Makin of the Makin Waves music column, radio segment and concert series joined forces to unify New Jersey’s rap and rock music scenes.

“This tour will present mixed bills throughout the Mid-Atlantic to promote interracial relations, unity and harmony, while providing a great experience to deserving acts who lack the representation to schedule and promote an effective tour,” the organizers said. “Together, we have been able to do just that with very limited resources and means, but with a whole lotta soul.”

The tour schedule will include:
July 12, Asbury Park Music Foundation, co-presented by APMF & Independent Venue Week
July 13, The Fire, Philadelphia
July 14, FM Bar, Jersey City, co-presented by The Rock-it Docket
July 19, Mill Hill Basement, Trenton
July 20, Sunnyvale, Brooklyn, co-presented by Excess dB & Dadager Entertainment
July 21, Blackthorn, New Brunswick
July 22, Wonder Bar, Asbury Park, co-presented by Happy Mondays.

Tickets to the shows are $10, except Blackthorn and Happy Mondays, which are free. For complete lineups, set times and other details, visit Also, hash tag #rapnrocktour on Facebook and Instagram. 

Participating in the Summer Rap ‘n’ Rock Tour will be:

Playlists of the artists can be found on Spotify and YouTube.

A special set will open the tour on July 12 at Asbury Park Music Foundation with a performance by students of the Hip Hop Institute, APMF’s after-school music program for under-served teens in partnership with Lakehouse Music Academy and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Monmouth County.

“It’s been an honor working with talented young up-and-coming artists at the Hip Hop Institute,” Program Coordinator Myster-E said. “They’ve been working hard on their craft, and I look forward to seeing them share the stage with several other great musicians and artists at this Rap ‘n’ Rock show in Asbury Park! Let’s get it!”

The tour will donate $350 to Asbury Park Music Foundation’s music education programs for under-served youth across New Jersey. For more info about them, visit

APMF also is a co-sponsor of the tour, as is Independent Venue Week, a seven-day celebration of small music venues and a nod to the people that own, run and work in them, week in, week out.

“We are pleased to be hosting the kick-off of the tour with such a great lineup of musical acts spanning across diverse genres,” APMF Chairman Jim Lenskold said. “As part of Independent Venue Week, this event spotlights Asbury Park’s support of diverse genres, as well as our many great independent venues.”

Other Rap ‘n’ Rock Tour sponsors are Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Massage by Design, and Karma Cartel, Chris Rockwell’s company, which designed the tour poster. Tour highlights include Tito’s Handmade Vodka drink specials at participating venues and chair massages from Massage by Design at APMF and Blackthorn.The tour also marks the return of the Makin Waves July Baby Birthday Bash at Blackthorn on July 21, Bob Makin’s birthday. In its early days in the late ’80s and early ’90s, Makin Waves hosted a party for everyone in the New Jersey music scene whose birthday was also in July. The free Blackthorn show marks the first time in more than 25 years that the bash will be celebrated once again with a free birthday sheet cake and other fun.

By Dw Dunphy

Dw. Dunphy is a writer, artist, and musician. He has contributed many articles that can be found in the MusicTAP's archives. He also writes for New Jersey Stage,, Ultimate Classic Rock, Diffuser FM, and Looper. His interview archive is available at