In December 2007 the TJC Student Senate began gearing up for a spring concert set to take place on the TJC campus. But, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing.
“We’ve been working on the concert since before the holidays in December. We went and surveyed the students to look at what R&B artist students would like to see,” said Scott Nalley, director, student activities and sponsor of the Tyler Junior College student senate.
The first artist students wanted to see was Chris Brown.
“Chris Brown wanted $125,000 to come to TJC. We have $70,000 to spend. We have to pay everything: rider fee, hospitality, artist fee, and sound and lights,” Nalley said.
After realizing that Chris Brown would be over budget for TJC, another survey was sent to see what other artists the students would like to have on campus.
“Ne-Yo was the second person we tried. Ne-Yo would not return our phone calls,” said Nalley.
The third artist attempted was R&B artist, Keyshia Cole.
“Keyshia Cole’s rider is $25, 000,” said Nalley. Although Cole may have been within the TJC budget, there were concerns about her rider requests, her dependability and the costs for bringing her to the TJC campus.
“She had cancelled other concert dates and we were concerned about not enough money or Cole cancelling,” said Nalley.
A rider fee is an artist’s request to have certain items provided for them when they arrive at the venue they are scheduled to play. Among some of Cole’s requests were: toothbrush and toothpaste, 4 brand new towels, 30
complimentary tickets in the first 4 rows, numerous hotel rooms for her entourage and a 12-pack of Heineken for her friends, just to name a few. Nalley believed the rider was unreasonable and was concerned that Cole may have cancelled the show, leaving the TJC students without a spring concert.
After the initial three surveys of TJC students and other R&B artists considered, three up-and-coming R&B acts have been confirmed for the spring 2008 concert.
The R&B group set to perform as the opening act for the spring concert is a new group called Black Violin. Black Violin is made up of two violinists, Kev Marcus and Wil-B from Palm Beach, Fla. According to Concert Ideas, Inc., the two violinists are a “…classically trained, three-time Apollo winning duo.” The group was trained at the Dillard High School of Performing Arts in Palm Beach, Fla. Black Violin has played with popular artists like Linkin Park’s lead singer Mike Shinoda, Alicia Keys, and P. Diddy according to the group’s website. More information about Black Violin can be found at http://www.blackviolin.net or http://www.myspace.com/dknex.
The female group Cherish has been confirmed as the second performance for the spring concert. Cherish is an R&B act composed of four sisters, Farrah, Neosha, Felisha and Fallon King. The group is originally from South Carolina.
The headlining act for the spring concert is Yung Joc. Yung Joc is a popular rap artist from Atlanta and already has several nominations under his belt. His website states, “With two No. 1 hits to his credit (‘It’s Goin’ Down and I Know You See It’), Joc was by far the most accomplished new hip-hop artist of 2006 – earning nominations from the Grammys, American Music Awards, BET Awards, and Billboard Awards. ‘It’s Goin’ Down’ was also the #1-selling ring tone in all of the Warner Music Group.” Yung Joc’s website is http://www.block-ent.com/yungjoc/ or http://www.myspace.com/yungjoc.
“There is a change in the air about student life. It’s an exciting time. We want to make student life appealing. The student services fee is coming back five fold and if there’s something students want to see, let us know, and we will do everything we can to make it happen,” said Vincent V. Nguyen, student activities specialist.
The concert is scheduled to be held Wednesday, March 19, 2008 in the Wise Auditorium on the TJC campus.
“Wise Auditorium has been booked and the tickets are limited,” Nalley said.
TJC’s Wise Auditorium seats 750 people and approximately 650 tickets will be available to TJC students attending the spring concert. There will be 100 complimentary tickets available to the groups’ fan clubs or 20 tickets per artist and additional tickets available to VIPs that are invited.
Tickets for TJC students will be free and can be picked up at the information desk in Rogers Student Center with a valid student ID card.
“Anyone with a TJC student ID will get a free ticket,” said Nalley.
TJC students will have first priority for the first 650 tickets. Any remaining tickets will be available to the TJC family including: faculty, staff, and administration for $10 each.
The concert will begin at 7:30 pm and each artist that is chosen to perform will play 45 to 60 minutes.
“This concert is for TJC students. It will be a very intimate show because the audience is close to the performers,” said Nalley.