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Photo: Levitate Music Festival

Michael Franti


Genre: Roots, Rock, Reggae, Hip-Hop, Soul, Funk, Pop
Hometown: San Francisco
Years Active: (1993–present)


Michael Franti: Vocals
Carl Young: Bass
Jay Bowman: Guitar
Manas Itiene: Drums
Mike Blankenship: Keys


Management Company: ACTIVIST
Booking Agency: WME
Publicist Company: ACTIVIST



Forming in 1994, Michael Franti formed a new band with a few studio musicians after the dissolution of his previous band, Disposable Heroes of Hypocrisy. Their first album “Home” in 1994 drew inspiration from funk and soul music, and a mere three years later released their second album, “Chocolate Supa Highway.” The sophomore album had a changeup not only with the band members, but also with their sound, having more of a reggae and hip hop sound than the previous record.

After running into some issues with Capitol Records, the band left the label and formed Boo Boo Wax. In 2000 the band released “Stay Human” and the album touched upon social and political issues, such as the death penalty and corporate globalization. Following “Stay Human,” the band released “Everyone Deserves Music” in 2003, an album that was a bit more rock centric while still maintaining a blend of reggae and folk as well. Inspired by his trip to the Middle East, Franti wrote and recorded with his band, “Yell Fire!”

Having gained a large following through their extensive touring and alternative media, the band continued to find success, especially with their lyrics speaking about so many relevant global events and issues. Franti even played three different events to commemorate President Barack Obama’s inauguration.

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