Students jive to Hoodie Allen beat

Headliner Hoodie Allen performs Friday at The Grand Kerfuffle. -Erin Burns Colby Patterson
Headliner Hoodie Allen performs Friday evening at The Grand Kerfuffle. Photo by Erin Burns.

Headliner Hoodie Allen performs Friday evening at The Grand Kerfuffle. Photo by Erin Burns.

The bass was bumpin’ and the students were jumpin’ at the massive mosh pit that was the Grand Kerfuffle Friday night.

ASUU’s spring concert sold more than 4,000 tickets to concert-goers excited to see up-and-coming hip-hop star Hoodie Allen, rap legend Talib Kweli and local artist Burnell Washburn & The Druthers, who were booked based on a survey given to students at the beginning of the year.

The event cost around $115,000 and had some new additions from last year’s Kerfuffle, including GoPro cameras set up around the main stage to project different angles of the performances onto a giant portable screen.

The event also had two VIP sections, which consisted of students who were involved with Rock the U, ASUU’s philanthropy board. One of the areas was awarded to the MUSS Board, which was the overall winner of the Rock the U dance-a-thon.

Although many attendees showed up just in time for headliner Hoodie Allen, the crowd was getting wild before he even walked on stage.

“It’s really loud, but fun. There’s a lot of energy,” said Nigel Marabello, a sophomore in computer science who was tabling at the concert.

For Gustabo Rodriguez, a senior in communication, his third Kerfuffle was just as exciting as the rest.

“The people get you going,” Rodriguez said.

While Allen is a newer artist whose pop rap appeals to a younger crowd, Talib Kweli brought in some major hip-hop enthusiasts.

“I loved Talib Kweli. That was the main reason I went,” said Troy Gulbrandsen, a U professor. “He is a legend and I have been listening to him for 15 years. He is at the roots of hip-hop and represents its true nature.”

Kweli and Burnell Washburn & The Druthers opened for Allen, whose act began at about 8:30 p.m. By then, students who were wandering through the vending stations gathered on the Union lawn, glow sticks in hand, to dance to beats put down by DJ Fresh Direct.

Allen ran on stage 15 minutes later to the roar of the crowd and played an hour long set of original music, as well as covers of popular songs by Kanye West, Taylor Swift and Sum 41, to the audience’s excitement.

“When ‘Fat Lip’ [by Sum 41] came on I almost died. I felt like I was in high school again and moshed the [crap] out of all those freshmen,” Gulbrandsen said.

During his set, Allen held a dance-off on stage for his signed Utah sweatshirt. Devin Price, a sophomore in marketing and ASUU’s assistant manager of concerts, won the competition while popping and locking to the Backstreet Boys.

“After I saw the first guy go, I was about to walk off the stage and quit … I think I got lucky with the Backstreet Boys song selection,” Price said.

After Allen’s final song, DJ Fresh Direct held onto the crowd by hosting a dance party. While many students stayed to mosh and jump around, some were left wondering what was happening.

“I was confused as to why there was so much DJ as opposed to actual Hoodie. I did not like that part,” said Stephanie Black, a sophomore in biology.

Allie Vangeison, a junior in nursing and ASUU’s concert manager, was happy to see all of her and her team’s hard work come together for her last event in this position.

“I’ve been on the concerts board for two years now, but I’m definitely going to miss planning these concerts. This one is a very sentimental one for me,” Vangeison said.

Although Vangeison will miss putting together shows, she was also happy to have Hoodie Allen as the headliner for her last concert.

“I mean, I’m really in love with Hoodie Allen. I love his music and after doing surveys and seeing that he would be well received on campus … you do not understand how excited I was,” Vangeison said.

e.means@chronicle.utah.edu

@EmMcBean