As producers of the BUKU Music + Art Project, we’ve been given the joy of curating a live experience where a diverse makeup of fans from all over the country join to celebrate the progressive and vibrant subculture of New Orleans.
With that privilege comes a responsibility to 1) foster an actively diverse, equitable, inclusive and anti-discriminatory environment geared toward advancing social justice; 2) reduce the environmental impact of our events and adapt our operations toward science-based sustainability; and 3) support and uplift New Orleans and the neighboring communities through philanthropy, solidarity and community engagement.
There is work to do, it will be a never-ending practice, and we are ready to do it.
Together with you, the BUKREWE, we stand for acceptance, compassion, encouragement and love. BUKU, both on-site and online, is intended to be a safe space to enjoy music, art, expression and community without worrying about any form of hatred or harassment. We thank y’all for working together over the years to keep each other feeling safe to party in complete freedom.
Our anti-discrimination policy includes no sexism, sexual harassment or misogyny; no racism or discrimination based on ethnicity, immigration status or cultural views; no homophobia, biphobia or transphobia; no religious or spiritual bigotry; no unwanted touching, catcalling or body-shaming; no ableism or ageism; and no acts of violence or aggression. If you are witness to or a victim of any act of hate, harassment or discrimination, either at the festival or on our social media channels, please report it to a representative of the festival.
In the summer of 2020, BUKU and Upbeat Academy, like many organizations around the country, decided that silence on various forms of racial & social injustice was no longer an option, but action that mirrored our internal values was necessary. BUKU and Upbeat partnered to launch the Take Action Project (“TAP”) with both the immediate and long-term mission of 1) using BUKU’s platform to elevate awareness around issues of systemic racism, minority oppression and social & environmental sustainability, and 2) taking action by organizing campaigns to generate donations and volunteer efforts in solidarity with social & environmental justice organizations.
Check out the report cards of our most recent campaigns. Click on image to expand.
Founded in 2013, Upbeat Academy is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that inspires and empowers New Orleans youth through a modern approach to music education. Utilizing an original curriculum that provides access to the technology and tools used in the production and performance of hip-hop, rap, R&B, dance music and other popular genres, Upbeat Academy strives to nurture the next generation of musical talent and entrepreneurs, fostering creativity and collaboration both in the classroom and in the community.
Since day one, BUKU has donated a significant portion of the Upbeat Academy Foundation’s annual budget via fan charity fees, guest list donations, graffiti auctions and personal donations from the BUKU founders. Every year, BUKU provides Upbeat student-artists with the opportunity to perform on stage at the festival and meet their favorite artists including Kendrick Lamar, Nas, A$AP Rocky, Chance The Rapper and Run The Jewels.
During COVID, the BUKU founders, who sit on the Upbeat board, have been busy working with the Upbeat Director on flipping the curriculum online for the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters, hiring a Learning & Development Director and Marketing Coordinator to the Upbeat team, creating and diversifying the Upbeat Advisory Council & Board of Directors, developing a job shadow & job placement program for the student-artists at BUKU and other events, and working with industry leaders and artists on a guest speaker series for the student-artists.