April 22, 2013

Hoodie Allen Will Perform at Cornell on Slope Day

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Rapper Hoodie Allen will be the second performer in this year’s Slope Day lineup, the Slope Day Programming Board announced Monday.

According to Slope Day Chair Yang Zhao ’13, Hoodie Allen’s performance is scheduled after DJ 5 & A Dime and before headliner Kendrick Lamar. He is set to perform for approximately 45 minutes to an hour, Zhao said.

Zhao said he believes that Hoodie Allen’s rapping style will complement Kendrick Lamar’s music.

“Kendrick is a hard-core rapper, and Hoodie is a little more mainstream hip-hop artist. His music is regularly featured on the radio and has catchy, poppy choruses that people can’t help but sing along with,” Zhao said. “I’m actually really happy with it. I was hoping we would be able to get him.”

Hoodie Allen’s most recent mixtape, Crew Cuts, was released in February 2013, according to his website. His 2012 single, “All American,” reached number one on the iTunes charts and number 10 on Billboard’s Top Albums.

The 25-year-old Long Island native, whose real name is Steven Markowitz, graduated from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 2010.

Zhao said ­that reactions to the announcement have been positive so far.

“Since we announced it, I’ve been scanning the Facebook page looking for negative comments, and so far I haven’t seen any, but once word gets out I’m sure there will be more of a response,” he said. “For the most part though, I think people are pretty excited for the line-up we’ve chosen.”

Many students have expressed excitement and surprise about the announcement.

“When I first heard about it, I thought it was a joke, so I thought that it wasn’t actually going to happen, but when I found out it was real, I was so excited,” Cindy Zhou ’15 said. “Anything he plays will be great.”

Other students hope he performs his most popular singles accompanied by his band band.

“I couldn’t believe it when I first saw it on Facebook. I really hope he performs his big hits, like ‘No Interruption,’” Chelsea Chen ’15 said.

Chen said that he is unusually friendly with his fans, and even responds to them on social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter.

“He is really cool with his fans and always want to meet them. He even tweeted back at me once, so I can’t wait,” she said.

Zhou said that she has been hoping Hoodie Allen would visit Cornell since he tweeted at her after Slope Day last year.

“Last year, all of my friends and I tweeted at him and told him to perform at Cornell,” Zhou said. “He kept saying that he wanted to come, so I’m so excited that he’s finally coming.”

The decision to bring Hoodie Allen as the second headliner has set the stage for a rap-dominated Slope Day. However, there could be two more different rappers than Hoodie Allen and Kendrick Lamar. Hoodie Allen’s sex, money and fame dominated lyrics make him a quintessential frat rapper in the likes of Mac Miller. Allen doesn’t attempt to talk about serious topics, at least not more serious than how hard it is to get a job after college (which should hit home for some of our juniors and seniors.) Lamar on the other hand, focuses on gun-violence, gangs and what its like to grow up in the worst neighborhoods. He pushes the limits, hitting on harsh truths with playing with deviated, if not very popular beats.

Allen’s beats are catchy, but not overly creative or experimental. His choruses, filled with piano infused melodies, almost push his music in the realm of pop.

Allen was born and raised in the northeast, attended an Penn and got his start performing at frat parties. With his Long Island roots and house party beginnings, Allen should be no stranger to the Slope Day scene.

Rap fans who are not a fan of Kendrick Lamar’s rhymes and style may be much happier with Allen. Spitting celebrity references at a mile a minute, Hoodie Allen raps about the life and struggles of someone much more similar to the typical Cornell student, referencing shows like Workaholics — “got me working like I’m Anders Holmvik.”

Those looking for a pop performance on Slope Day should feel fulfilled with Allen. His songs are easy to sing along to and his choruses should be catchy enough to get drunk heads bouncing, even if they can’t sing along.

Allen’s music may not be as genuine or as insightful as Lamar’s, but, for that reason, he may be more suited for Slope Day. Allen has come a long way since his college days, his album All American debuted at #10 in Billboard’s top albums. His words in Top of the Word sum it up, “Standing at the top of the world yelling Geronimo / From the top of my lungs, made it onto the honor roll / Your boy made it, the education was worth it / … / Word, it’s real talk, but they be saying we average / Get up on my level, where you at bitch?”

Original Author: Arielle Cruz