BY BRITTNEY ROLLERSON
SC Staff Writer
On behalf of East Stroudsburg University’s Campus Activities Board, up and coming rapper A$AP Rocky will be performing at Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania’s Sherman Theater, April 25, for the university’s annual spring concert.
One question has circulated around the university’s campus for some time now, “who is A$AP Rocky?” Born Rakim Mayers and Harlem, New York raised, Rocky got his start in 2007 when he formed the A$AP Mob with other Harlem based rappers and producers.
His first single titled “Peso” was debuted on the well- known New York radio station Hot 97, in 2011. After releasing his mix tape “Live.Love.A$AP”, he signed a two year record deal with RCA Records and Polo Grounds Music.
His well-known single in the U.S, U.K and even Germany; “Problems”, featuring rappers Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and 2 Chains landed at number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Rocky’s fame has been escalating ever since, with his album, released January 2013 titled “Long Live A$AP”, topping the Billboard 200 chart.
Accompanying singer Rihanna on her “Diamonds” world tour A$AP Rocky’s journey has shown no signs of stopping any time soon.
Through the work of concert chair of the Campus Activities Board (CAB), Kayshia Kruger and assisting committee members East Stroudsburg University will be sponsoring a one hour concert with A$AP Rocky with special guest performers; Ground Up, Pat Solo, and the Stroudsburg native rapper LG.
Being Concert Chair for three years so far, Kruger is no rookie. She is also responsible for planning the Ke$ha, Big Sean, F.U.N.; the university’s largest concert, and other past university sponsored concerts. The process of booking these artists starts with a student survey to find which artists they would prefer to see in concert.
Artists French Montana, Owl City, Cher Lloyd, Brand New, Yellow Card, Porter Robinson, Cruella, Pauly D, Florida Georgia Line, and Datsik and A$AP Rocky were the choices available in the most recent survey. Next, various artist booking agencies are contacted to check the artists’ schedules and prices. According to Kruger, an artist’s price could change within a week.
After picking the artist CAB and the artist’s party go through several negotiations and develop a contract.
Typical artist costs can be anywhere from $40,000 to $100,000. Included in each student’s tuition statement is a portion of money allotted toward student activity fees. This is how the university gets the funds to pay the artists and afford the other expenses to hold these annual concerts. The budget for both the fall and spring semester concerts was a sum of $70,000.
Though the content of Rocky’s music may be too derogatory for some, Kruger stated that she remains open minded and shares neutral opinions on his music. “He’s actually made a lot of lead way in the industry. I like that his album was produced by Drake and Skrillex.
He is also touring with Rihanna right now so when he’s doing our show it’s called a one off show.
He will be playing our show while Rihanna is in New Jersey.” “I’m neutral. It’s not something I would listen to everyday but it’s there.” said Kruger. Despite feelings that the artist’s content is too derogatory Kruger has witnessed positive responses to news of the concert. She explained that she received calls from alumni and students from other schools asking when tickets would be on sale before the concert was officially announced and finalized.
Kruger even stated that she actually found tickets being sold online for $100.
“Majority of the feedback was positive but the only negative I’ve heard is that they don’t know the artist or who he was but, when they heard his song they would know.”
At first the executive board of CAB did not know who A$AP Rocky was either but after hearing about all his success they felt as though he would be a good choice for the concert.
Kruger estimated ticket sales to be currently a little over one thousand; with capacity being 1,800 she predicts this show could potentially be another sold out one.
The Sherman Theater doors will open at 7 PM with the show starting at 8 PM. Tickets are sold on ticketmaster.com and on the top floor of the University Center.
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