By Eric Woodyard
Western Michigan University has never represented much of a hip-hop scene, but that might be about to change.
While the voids for rock, pop (with Clay Aiken in 2007), and even blues (with BB King in 2007) music have all been represented throughout not only the university, but in the city of Kalamazoo as well, hip-hop has truly been the minority.
The Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity looks to change that, at least temporarily, by bringing 21-year-old Detroit native, Big Sean to campus this weekend.
The concert will be free of charge and will be hosted in the East Ballroom of the Bernhard Center on Dec. 5. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and the festivities will begin at 7 p.m.
“I’ve done Michigan State [University] and [the University of Michigan], like, way earlier this year but I always wanted to do more schools like Western [Michigan University], or wherever, because I had been doing shows all over the country, like not even touching the stuff in Michigan,” Big Sean said.
“So I feel like I have the opportunity to come and mess with the Alphas and I think it’s just going to be a good time and I’m glad they decided to get me.”
Big Sean won’t be the only person that is happy that the fraternity has decided to bring him on campus. True fans of the hip-hop craft are well aware that this artist is truly on the rise for superstardom.
In 2007, Sean was signed to Kanye West’s GOOD Music record label. Then in 2008, he also signed with Island Def Jam. Big Sean is taking some time out of his busy schedule, as he is currently in the process of putting together his first studio album.
“I’ve been working on my album that will be coming out on GOOD Music/Def Jam that is coming out in, like, the spring, so I’ve just been working on getting it together,” Big Sean said.
“I’ve got songs produced by, like, Kanye [West], I’ve got one produced by Pharrell, about, like, four or five produced by No I.D., and it’s just gonna be a real big project and it’s something I’m looking forward to and especially for the city and, like, Michigan in general and it’s gonna be real big.”
The producers working on this upcoming album that will be entitled “Finally Famous,” are heavyweights in the industry as they have also produced material for artists like Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Usher, and Alicia Keys.
Big Sean hopes that by coming to WMU this weekend, he can continue to establish a solid fan base that will be willing to support his album when it is released in a time where album sales are continuing to sink.
“I definitely feel like I’ve gotta tackle the college crowd just because that’s my age group, I’m only 21,” Big Sean said.
“It’s great because I haven’t even dropped my first single yet so it’s like I have been getting free promo shows by going all over to different colleges, so it’s much love putting out that mixtape, and I’ve been getting a lot of shows off of it, and a lot of people have been liking it.”
Big Sean will perform Saturday at 7 p.m., free of charge, in the East Ballroom of the Bernhard Center.