After releasing the names of the acts performing for the Student Government Inc., sponsored “Just Press Play II,” the University received some backlash for their choice of Ludacris as a headlining act. After deciding to renege on their decision to invite Ludacris to St. John’s, the University is left scrambling for a replacement.
Since alternative music acts such as Hellogoodbye and Boys Like Girls are already up to perform, a hip-hop act should replace Ludacris so that the concert still has a variety of music in order to draw a larger audience. There are plenty of artists St. John’s can get that are a part of hip-hop culture where expletives are not essential to the lyrical content of their songs.
Take, for example, rapper Lupe Fiasco. For some rappers, if their expletives were removed, the audience would be left with nothing but a few nouns and conjunctions. For Lupe Fiasco, however, there are few if any profane words that will prevent him from coming up with a radio-friendly alternative. Fiasco’s lyrics touch on a multitude of subjects, including one that uses skateboarding to escape the pitfalls of urban life.
The majority of Fiasco’s content sends a positive message, which essentially drove the debate over whether or not to invite Ludacris.
However, if the school desires to bring in a well-known name, they should go with an artist such as John Legend ,who has a mix of slow R&B as well as up-tempo songs. He is a certified platinum artist, ensuring that, at the very least, some students would have heard of him and some would be fans. Therefore, he can draw a huge crowd.
There could be some controversial content in his lyrics, essentially in some of his sexual references, but they largely discuss the beauty of love rather than illustrating crude, vulgar sexual imagery.
Finding a replacement for Ludacris is not impossible and he was not the best choice for the University in the first place.
Perhaps the problem is not who the University can find to replace Ludacris but rather if they have the time to find a replacement. They would be best to choose Fiasco, as he probably costs less and could be more accessible than Legend.
Either way, they have at least two great options.