Ryann Richardson for The Times-News
For a decade, radio personality Joey Bravo participated in the annual Hip Hop Holiday Charity concert, providing much needed funds to local organizations in the Magic Valley.
Originally from Ventura, Calif., Bravo moved to Twin Falls after a visit to his mother, who moved to the area while Bravo served in the United States Navy. Bravo met his wife on this first visit and was offered a temporary job during her stay. He made the decision to move to Magic Valley soon after.
“I have had my two loves: the love of my life and what I love to do,” he said.
Growing up in California, Bravo began creating music – especially hip hop – from an early age, driven by a family heritage of creativity.
While Bravo experimented with being an on-air personality in his youth – creating his own radio show between performances as a young adult – he happened to come to his position at Music Monster 92.7.
“There was a competition to become a radio DJ – a radio personality,” Bravo explained. “That’s what kept me here. In fact, even though I didn’t think I was going to win it, I ended up winning it.
Bravo’s prize was the promise of a three-month radio show, $ 1,000, and a one-year supply of Mountain Dew. After the three months had passed, the company behind the radio show asked Bravo to stay on full-time, and over the years he rose through the ranks.
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“I love to create; it’s one of the main things I love to do, ”he said. “Every day, I create something. Every day I find a new way to innovate something. I try to find ways to motivate and inspire the people around me to do the same and create a strong team of like-minded individuals.
One of the ways Bravo aims to inspire others is through charity, especially the annual Hip Hop Holiday Charity Concert, which is in its 10th year.
Seeing a need within the community and keen to share music with the people of Twin Falls, Bravo used their years of experience and personal connections to bring together a group of artists for a good cause. Since that first event, the organizers have had to become more selective about which artists they invite, as the number of interested people has grown exponentially over the past 10 years.
“It’s so hard to say no to people because we want everyone to be a part of it, but there isn’t enough time in the day to include everyone,” he said.
This year’s artists include Roy Wilson & Ti Dove, Adrean Garza, Lyrical Sound Demon, Dedicated Servers, ill Zakiel and more.
Bravo said the event has become a tradition for a number of people looking to help members of their community while enjoying shows and supporting the hip hop community.
“The hip hop community is viewed in a different light depending on who looks at it,” Bravo said. “Really, the main focal point of culture is unity. There are so many people from all walks of life – old and young – coming to support the cause. At the end of the day, we are just trying to help others have a wonderful vacation in any way we can.
The organizers only cover the artists’ travel and accommodation costs, and each selected artist donates their time to perform. The profits are donated to charities in the community. In the past, the Hip Hop Holiday Charity Concert has partnered with The Salvation Army and Sleep in Heavenly Peace, a group that builds beds for lifeless children.
“We want to help as many people as possible,” Bravo said. “Many of us come from poor backgrounds or where we had a difficult life growing up, so we want to help those in the same place as us – not with a helping hand, but a helping hand.”
The 10th Annual Hip Hop Holiday Charity Concert – hosted by Bravo and Michael Summers – kicks off at 7 p.m. on November 20 at the Turf Club. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the event is limited to persons 15 years of age or older.
Participants must bring a new unwrapped toy, a new coat for a child, or a $ 10 donation to participate. Proceeds will go to Sleep In Heavenly Peace and Coats 4 Kids. All toy and food donations collected during the event will be delivered to the Valley House Homeless Shelter in Twin Falls.