On Friday, Aug. 11, 2023 two significant events unfolded in Hip-Hop history: the 50th anniversary of the musical genre’s inception and a celebration for Outkast member Antwan “Big Boi” Patton.
The Savannah native received numerous proclamations and honors from political figures across the Atlanta Metro area that evening.
The celebration was hosted at Spaceman ATL, which is located at the rooftop at the Hyatt Centric in Buckhead. Partnering with national retail brand, Athletes Foot, the celebration offered a nostalgic glimpse into Hip-Hop’s past with retro-themed props.
At approximately 9:30 p.m., Big Boi made his way on a stage with his mother, Rowena Patton, alongside representatives from the Atlanta City Council. The ceremony commenced with State Representative Yasmin Neal presenting Big Boi with a commendation from the House of Representatives.
Georgia State Representative Park Cannon, then honored him as an Outstanding Georgia Citizen with a proclamation from the Secretary of State.
Jonesboro mayor Dr. Donya L. Sartor, PhD, the first Black mayor in the city’s history, added to the accolades with a letter of accommodation from her office, as well as a heartfelt message.
“I’m so honored, because in 1992 my first year of teaching was at Tri-Cities High School when you were a senior. I hailed from College Park and now I’m a mayor and look at you standing right next to me,” Sartor said.
Atlanta City councilman Michael Julian Bond, with fellow councilman Antonio Lewis and Byron Amos, presented their awards and proclamations, including one from Fulton County, to the rap star. The councilmen praised Big Boi’s community service and declared August 11 Big Boi Day across all 15 cities within Fulton County.
“We had the first Outkast day back in the 90s in the atrium of City Hall. Outkast hosted over 200 senior citizens that day,” said Bond. “They have always been in the community and have always given back to Atlanta.”
“We the members of the Fulton County Commission hereby declare this day as Big Boi Day in all of Fulton County,” Bond announced.
Amos followed with his own proclamation, after which Patton took the stage, highlighting the influence of his mother on his journey and upbringing. He acknowledged her sacrifices and determination, sharing personal anecdotes from their past.
“My mama is my rock. She made it possible. She wouldn’t sign my record deal even though me and Dre (Andre 3000) had gone platinum,” said Patton.
Patton then delved into what his childhood was like growing up.
“Many of you don’t know this, but we stayed in the Motel 6 on Campbellton Road during my whole time in middle school,” he said. “My mama was going to work and going to school. She still made sure I got my education before we could sign a deal.”