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BAMCO presents off campus bands DAP The Contract and Diaspøra in lively Chum’s concert

By Noah Harper

Section: Arts

November 3, 2017

I haven’t really been a fan of the big live music concerts that we’ve had here on campus. In my last two and a half years here, we have yet to have an act deserving of the tens of thousands of dollars that we pay them to come here. Why does it seem like we can never get someone good to play on campus?

This was why I was so excited to stumble upon the BAMCO concert last Friday, Oct. 27. Indie rap acts DAP The Contract and Diaspøra played at Chum’s, bringing eclectic and engaging performances to campus. The only problem was the turnout; there were only about 20 students in attendance.

BAMCO, the Brandeis Association for Music/Concert Organization, “was created to allow students to have a say in the music on campus,” co-president Nina Feinberg ’18 told The Brandeis Hoot. “We bring free live music to the Brandeis community that was chosen by democratic vote by our members. Anybody is welcome to join and each person has an equal say,” she added.

The democratic process BAMCO uses allows anyone to find and submit an artist for a vote. “Each member is encouraged to contact bands and performers that they want to see on campus. We guide members on how to reach out to groups and their agents, how to negotiate a fair price and how to write and send them a contract,” Feinberg said.

Friday’s hip hop show, courtesy of BAMCO, was awesome and deserved a better turnout. The two acts, DAP the Contract and rap collective Diaspøra, all went to (or are currently attending) Brown, and it was obvious that everyone knew everyone, with the various MCs collaborating with each other on their songs, repeatedly inviting their fellow artists back up on stage, keeping the music fresh and dynamic. “This is a family business,” Diaspøra member Tone said.

The energetic community the performers brought made the show all the more impressive. Because it seemed like half the crowd were friends (and members of) Diaspøra and DAP The Contract, it really felt like we had been invited to a private show, getting the chance to hang out with some really great hip-hop artists while they performed with their friends. My favorite thing was how they’d yell out the lyrics to their friend’s songs at the top of their lungs—obviously, they knew them all by heart.

In the Diaspøra show, performers Tone and SO4P were the standouts. I really liked their production, and the way their different styles of flow complemented one another. SO4P delivered with a slower, more methodical style, while Tone brought a faster lyricism and a great singing voice.

After Diaspøra, DAP The Contract came on. DAP immediately went hard, getting the audience jumping from the start. “I need to catch my breath,” he said after his first song. Highlights included inviting up Tone and SO4P from Diaspøra for a few songs, and us all singing a round of “Happy Birthday” for his girlfriend.

DAP closed out his set by getting off of the stage, and telling us to make a circle in Chum’s, ending with the crowd singing along to the final chorus of his song “Right Now,” the hook of which has been stuck in my head the last few days. “I’ve been missing on a mission right now, right now. I’m on the way, flying to outer space, right now,” we all sang in a call and response in the circle.

After the show was over, members of DAP and Diaspøra made sure to go up to people and shake hands, to say thanks. The personal touch was so important: This is how you build a fanbase, this is how you build a community.

There’s something powerful about getting to interact with artists, getting to see people who love what they do. I’m grateful that we have an organization on campus like BAMCO, a group of students that cares about finding performers who make great music—regardless of their popularity.

I wish more people had been at this show, and I hope more people come in the future. BAMCO, Feinberg said, has “one more show coming up in December this semester, plus more shows next semester.” The group has “weekly meetings on Tuesdays at 9:00 p.m. in the SCC. Anybody is welcome,” Feinberg added. You can check the club out on Facebook, or join its listserv: rock-n-roll@brandeis.edu.

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