Two weeks ago, Lupe Fiasco performed at War Memorial Gym as part of USF’s Homecoming weekend.
While last year’s performer, Wyclef Jean, interacted with students and performed for more than two hours, Fiasco barely made an appearance before the concert began. He met students that had spent all day preparing the gym for the concert only minutes before he went on stage. Once the concert began, Fiasco only played for about an hour.
Lupe Fiasco’s background in social justice is well-documented, and USF is to be commended for seeking out an artist that falls in line with the University’s core mission. However, the terms by which USF brought Lupe Fiasco to perform at our campus should have been re-worked to ensure a more interactive student experience.
For the amount of money that was spend on getting Lupe Fiasco to USF, why did he only perform for one hour?
Why were meeting with students and spending more time at USF not worked into Fiasco’s contract?
Why did USF not come to an agreement with Lupe Fiasco to where USFtv and the Foghorn would be able to photograph and film the event? Both student media outlets were not allowed to cover the event as fully as expected.
Lupe Fiasco was brought to USF for the USF community, and USFtv and the Foghorn are a large part of what makes this community. Student media outlets should have full access to Homecoming events in the future, as well as all events on campus, and we hope that next year USF comes to an agreement with the chosen artist(s) before hand to make this possible.
There is also a larger issue to be had with the Homecoming music choice and selection process. San Francisco, and more specifically USF, has a deep, wide-spread and popular music scene in all genres, including hip-hop, which was the choice of the student body for this year’s Homecoming concert.
There are venues all over the city that host local bands almost nightly.
There are bands with San Francisco roots that perform in San Francisco and would gladly come to USF.
There are students at USF that are in bands and perform around the city.
The Homecoming concert seems to be more of an outside experience, rather than a part of the lively and diverse music scene in San Francisco that so many students at USF are fans of or a part of.
The Homecoming concert should reflect this popular and growing scene, which is why the Foghorn endorses bringing a performer next year that has both a social justice background and has roots in the San Francisco music scene, regardless of the genre.
For the money that was spent on bringing Lupe Fiasco to USF, we could have had more than one, slightly less famous, but far more interactive, San Francisco-rooted performers be a part of our Homecoming weekend.
This might attract more upperclassmen to the event who, for the most part, did not attend the Homecoming concert.
Students across the board, from freshmen, to seniors, to graduate students, can largely identify with some aspect of the San Francisco music scene.
It is a key aspect of what makes San Francisco the diverse, open, free-spirited city that it is, which is a factor many people consider when deciding to come to San Francisco, and specifically USF, to pursue their education.