Press Release – (January 28, 2020)  An unprecedented music and movie collaboration launches in Central Texas, Keep Waco Loud and the Deep in the Heart Film Festival present: the 254 Music Video Race. 

“We have such vibrant music and filmmaking scenes in Waco – we can’t wait for them to come together,” says Samuel Thomas, Deep in the Heart Festival Artistic Director.

Central Texas bands, musicians and musical acts (all genres, rap to rock, hip hop to country and everything in-between) are encouraged to meet up and team up with area filmmakers to create new music videos in the 254 Music Video Race.

Teams will have two weeks to plan, produce and edit new music videos.  Race officials will select three music videos to screen at the ‘Blood, Sweat & Beats’ World Premiere on February 22nd at the Waco Hippodrome. All participating artists are encouraged to attend, view the finalists and help select the winner. An audience vote will choose a winner who will receive cash prizes, a featured spot on the Keep Waco Loud podcast, and their video will be an official selection in the Deep in the Heart Film Festival in August.

Musical artists and filmmakers can start their videos on February 1 or find your collaborators at our Filmmaker/Musician meet-and-greet, 7:00 pm, February 3rd at Klassy Glass. To register a team for the race (FREE ENTRY!), read all the rules and requirements at our website, www.DeepInTheHeartFF.com  

About the ‘Blood, Sweat & Beats’ Premiere

The world premiere of ‘Blood, Sweat & Beats’ will showcase the top three videos of the 254 Music Video Race. The documentary is a story of music, money and murder – birthed in the Bronx, but raised here in Waco. The film sheds light on this thriving music scene in Central Texas, interviewing the foundational artists in Waco, exploring the journey of the genre, and meeting the creators whose musical passion drives their lives. 

It’s an evening celebrating Hip Hop in Waco with live music from Verbal Seed, DQ Hampton, Chyrie, Scratch Master T and Donna C, breakdance performances from Battle Grounds Crew, live street art from Skcoobaveli.  

For premiere tickets, check out the Hippodrome website, www.WacoHippodromeTheatre.com

For every person not counted in the census Waco stands to lose $10,000 in funding

By Cuevas Peacock

My mother is a teacher, a proud member of our world’s greatest profession. Her story is one I often tell when informing others about my upbringing, my namesake, and my passion for serving. Growing up, she taught me many lessons, both direct and indirectly, most not hitting home until years after her initial telling. However, some teachings stayed with me from the beginning, one of which having occurred when I was in the fourth grade. During those years, I was still finding myself, and for some reason, had chosen to follow a group of kids who decided to give our new teacher trouble by answering to the wrong name during roll call for the majority of the year. A seemingly harmless prank at the time, it is one that would come back to haunt me as the person who assumed my name for the day soon after switched schools resulting in me almost being dropped from the school rolls. As you could imagine, my mother was furious, and I got in trouble in more ways than one. Through it all, she taught me an invaluable lesson, centered around the need to always be myself and to ensure that I am always accounted for. It is a lesson I carry with me today and is a driving reason for me choosing to serve as an advocate for the Census in hopes of us achieving a complete count.

The research will show that for every person not counted in the Census, a municipality will stand to lose $10,000 worth of federal funding over ten years. This loss of funding affects us all, from housing to education, transportation, economic development, and a wide swath of other areas. Through my previous work as a community organizer with Grassroots Community Development, the Census played an essential role in helping us to develop communities. We used Census data that showed homeownership rates in specific neighborhoods to choose where we would target our building efforts, and the data also aided us in applying for grants to provide financial literacy to residents looking to purchase homes. For so many Wacoans, Grassroots and other housing organizations have helped them achieve the American dream of homeownership. It is a dream deferred without an accurate census count to provide the funding needed to support local housing programs.

Currently, through my role in higher education and my interaction with college students, I get to see firsthand the product of our public-school system. This is a system that is directly funded by the Census, where a failure to gain an accurate count is a failure to fund our local schools accurately. Census data determines the distribution of more than $14 billion in Title I grants, $11.3 billion in special education grants, about $13.6 billion for the National School Lunch Program, plus funds for the Head Start preschool program and grants to improve teacher quality. For so many of the students I see across campus, they have taken their learning to a higher level. These are the best of the brightest minds, who will be charged with carrying society forward and making it better for us all. I can honestly say we are in good hands. However, it is only because of the strong educational foundation they received in the public-school system—a public-school system funded by the Census.

Through my time on the Census Complete Committee, I have been able to work alongside a group of community leaders from various sectors to develop initiatives that will help us achieve an accurate Census count. While our backgrounds and experiences may be different, our mission is the same—Waco’s future. The fight for equity across our systems is a battle we all must be engaged in to win. The first step is making sure we do our part to ensure we are equipped with the funding to meet the challenge.  An accurate Census count is needed in order for us to obtain the funding to guarantee Waco works for all of us. Thus, Waco needs you to participate in the 2020 census. You count, so this April, make sure you are accounted for!

For more information about local census efforts and how a complete and accurate Census count will ensure our community’s future, please visit whyicountwaco.org/community-impact.

Cuevas Peacock is a community builder with dreams of becoming a poet, for he was once told that they are life’s last true teachers. Originally from Port Arthur, Texas, he is employed with Baylor University as the Assistant Director for Cultural Wealth-Community Relations. Cuevas is certified as a Professional Community and Economic Developer through the Community Development Council, a graduate of THE Texas Southern University, and is currently pursuing his Masters of Social Impact from Claremont Lincoln University. He is a member of the 2020 Census Complete Count Committee, along with being involved in a host of other initiatives working towards making a better Waco.

Deep in the Heart Film Festival announces world premiere of ‘Blood, Sweat and Beats’ – The Story of Waco Hip Hop

Press Release – It’s a story of music, money and murder – birthed in the Bronx, but raised here in Waco, the Deep in the Heart Film Festival proudly hosts an evening of live music, breakdancing and street art to celebrate the World Premiere of ‘Blood, Sweat & Beats’, the Waco Hip Hop Story.   

The documentary sheds light on this vibrant music scene in Central Texas, interviewing the foundational artists in Waco, exploring the journey of the genre, and meeting the creators whose musical passion drives their lives.   

“We’ve prayed for a day like this. A day to be recognized for the music game. The scene is so powerful here. We want the young kids to see where it comes from.” says DJ Precyse, Executive Producer.  

The World Premiere of the film “Blood, Sweat, and Beats” hits the silver screen February 22, at 7:00 pm at the Waco Hippodrome.    

The evening kicks off with the red carpet arrivals of the filmmakers and featured artists. Next, live music takes the stage with performances from Verbal Seed, DQ Hampton, Chyrie, Scratch Master T and Donna C, breakdance performances from Battle Grounds Crew, graffiti artist, Skcoobaveli creates a brand new piece at the entrance of the theater and the evening is hosted by comedian, Terry Bluez. This is truly a showcase for all facets of the hip hop scene in our area.   

The evening concludes with the World Premiere of ‘Blood, Sweat and Beats’ and a Q&A with filmmakers and featured artists including multi-Grammy-Award winning producer, Symbolyc One.  This famed, Waco-born producer has worked with Beyonce, Jay-Z, Lorde, Madonna, Eminem and many more.  

Tickets are now available for the premiere at the Hippodrome website, www.WacoHippodromeTheatre.com.   

“Keep Waco Loud aims to support and empower all genres of music, and we feel that sharing this rich history through film is the perfect way to shine a spotlight on the Waco hip hop community.” says Keep Waco Loud founder, Katie Selman.   

Director Lindsay Liepman, on why it was important to tell this story as a feature film, “You only get one chance to tell the story for the first time. I wanted to make sure we took our time and interviewed as many people as possible to best represent this thriving community in Waco.”   

Sponsors for this World Premiere event include, 25 News, 94.5 The Beat, Keep Waco Loud, One of a Kind Records and the Deep in the Heart Film Festival. 

About Deep in the Heart Film Festival

Set in Waco, Texas, the Deep in the Heart Film Festival (DitHFF) is an annual festival attracting artists and filmmakers from all over the world. Held across four days packed with entertainment and learning, DitHFF is a celebration of film as an artform for the people.

“The festival really has something for everyone: family films, horror films, rom-coms, documentaries… If you like movies, you’ll find something to love here,” said Louis Hunter, Festival Operations Director. 

In addition to the annual festival, Deep in the Heart is dedicated to promoting independent filmmaking in the Central Texas area, seeking to inspire local filmmakers and celebrating the stories they tell. 


About the Waco Hippodrome

The Waco Hippodrome Theatre is a 105-year-old theatre in the heart of downtown Waco. The theatre has survived many trials and tribulations including a fire and the devastating tornado of 1953. In 2012 the hippodrome was bought and renovated after sitting vacant and dilapidated for several years. It reopened its doors in 2014 as a dine-in movie theatre, bar, restaurant, and entertainment venue featuring live music. New additions to the facility make it a film destination in Waco. See what we have going on each day at www.wacohippodrometheatre.com and follow them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: @wacohippodrometheatre.