Michael Franti and Spearhead will kick off summer season at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater in Vail | VailDaily.com

Michael Franti and Spearhead will kick off the summer season at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater during the GoPro Mountain Games

Aside from his music, Franti is also known for his political activism. He formed his current band, Spearhead, in 1994.
Special to the Daily

Winter is great and all, but there’s nothing quite like outdoor summer concerts, and the Vail Valley Foundation has announced the first show of the summer season at the Gerald R. Ford Ampitheater.

Michael Franti and Spearhead will kick off the season with a concert on Sunday, June 7. The show is during the GoPro Mountain Games, scheduled this year for Thursday, June 3-Sunday, June 7. The Michael Franti concert is not part of GoPro programming, which will still include free headlining concerts. This show is ticketed and will serve as an unofficial closing party for the event that welcomes summertime to the Vail Valley each year.

“Michael Franti is the perfect fit for the Sunday of the GoPro Mountain Games. His music and his vibe are right in stride with what that event, and that whole weekend, are about,” said Tom Boyd, director of the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater in an email. “I have to add that I personally love this man and his music and can’t wait to see him electrify this venue.”

Franti’s music career began while he was on a basketball scholarship at the University of San Francisco. He and some friends played in an industrial punk/spoken word band called The Beatnigs. Then he created The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, which incorporated more elements of hip-hop, especially on “Hypocrisy is the Greatest Luxury,” which is widely regarded as one of Franti’s most impressive records.

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He formed Spearhead in 1994 marked a departure from his rap-driven work, diving more into funk and soul. Songs from this era of his career ended up in films and TV shows: “Mystery Men,” “Last Holiday” and “Good Burger” name a few.

Aside from his music, Franti is also known for his political activism. His notable criticisms of things like the oil and fossil fuel industry; television media and its ability to make people apathetic towards politics and homophobia name a few. Today, he and his son are vegan (his son inspired him to eliminate animal products from his diet) and he owns a yoga retreat center in Ubud, Bali called Soulshine.

Tickets go on sale for the general public on Friday, Feb. 7 at 10 a.m., but if you sign up for the amphitheater’s summer concern email list, you’ll have access to early pre-sale tickets. To purchase, visit grfavail.com, and to subscribe, visit grfavail.com/amp-summer-concerts/.

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