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Posted: 10/4/2005 11:48:52 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/4/2005 11:57:47 AM EDT by Burley]
They were going to pay $85K for the performance, plus production expenses. This after they increased activity fees to pay for this. Not 100% sure on total student population, but when the university conducted a survey to get suggestions for this year's act (last year they hosted Everclear), they got a total response of approx. 500. Like I said, not 100% sure, but I think there are around 12000 students.


Ludacris concert in doubt following Freedom Hall denial

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

By COREY SHOUN

JOHNSON CITY - East Tennessee State University's controversial homecoming concert looked iffy Monday after Johnson City's city manager rejected the university's request to use Freedom Hall Civic Center and other venues were unavailable.

Hip-hop performer Ludacris was scheduled to appear Oct. 27 in a concert for the student body funded by a recent fee increase. ETSU booked the act at Freedom Hall after the state fire marshal rejected the use of Memorial Center as a venue for concerts.

ETSU President Paul Stanton said Monday he had spoken with City Manager Pete Peterson earlier in the day, and Peterson had decided against signing the lease agreement for Freedom Hall.

"He has serious concerns with issues of security," Stanton said. "As of 8:30 this (Monday) morning, Freedom Hall was not open as a venue."

Peterson said he made the decision based on his own research and community comments he has received over the past few weeks. He said the city would not presume to tell the university they could not have the concert elsewhere.

"In other locations there have been issues with crowd control and violence," Peterson said. "It's not in the community's best interest to have the possibility of that type situation on a middle school campus.

"People deserve the right to listen to what they want to listen to as long as it doesn't hurt anybody else."

After hearing the news that Freedom Hall was unavailable, student organizers began checking other possible venues, including Viking Hall in Bristol.

But Dr. Sally Lee, ETSU associate vice president for student affairs, later reported that Viking Hall, too, balked at the idea, so they were no longer seeking a new location.

Stanton said the university had not signed a contract with Ludacris, as only verbal discussions had occurred, and any agreement would have been inapplicable without a specific venue.

"Right now, there is no contract with Freedom Hall," he said. "There is no contract with Ludacris."

Likewise, Peterson said he was also unaware of an actual contract with the performer. "I never saw a contract to rent (Freedom Hall)."

The ETSU president said he reviewed the state fire marshal's letter rejecting the Mini Dome as a concert venue, and the decision stood for any concert, not just the Ludacris event.

Student Government Association leaders inquired again Monday to no avail.

"From what we understood, the concern of the state fire marshal was the floor seating in the Mini Dome," Lee said. "The word back was the state fire marshal was 100 percent clear there would be no concerts in the Mini Dome."

Stanton also said he had rejected the notion of conducting the homecoming event outdoors for security reasons.

"There's just too much risk there," Stanton said.

ETSU's Homecoming Committee booked the act after the SGA raised the student activity fee from $4 per semester to $20 last school year to accommodate such events. The student activities office polled students about performers they would like to see in concert, and Ludacris was the first on the resulting list who agreed to appear.

ETSU staff members and Student Government Association officers immediately heard complaints that the performer's lyrical content - off-color and sexually explicit language, illegal drug use, violence and misogyny - would be ill-suited to a university-endorsed program. SGA officers and advisers defended the choice, saying students could choose whether to attend.

SGA President J.R. Husmillo said Monday he believed community members had pressured the city to reject Freedom Hall as a venue for the Ludacris concert.

"We're frustrated because we haven't shown our side of the story to the city, the commissioners, to whoever they've talked to," Husmillo said. "This isn't for the community. I appreciate their concern in looking out for the best interests of the university, but I think we're absolutely mature enough to look out for our own interests.

"We're all adults here. Them taking this away from us is an infringement of student rights. This is student dollars. This is student money. This is our event," Husmillo said.

Stanton said some critics had misunderstood the funding mechanism for the $85,000 concert, since the self-imposed fee covered the costs. He said the students were trying to do something good for ETSU by bringing top concerts to campus, but the choice of acts had generated concerns.

"It's unfortunately polarizing things right now," Stanton said.

Asked about his personal opinion of the students' selection, the ETSU president said he had been unfamiliar with Ludacris' music until he listened to some recordings in his office and conducted an Internet search to read some of the material.

"I have some real problems with what I see in the lyrics of this individual or group," Stanton said, adding that he found a lack of "dignity" and "respect" in the material. "That really, really bothers me. I didn't see anything that reflected our values."

Stanton said ETSU values diversity in its mission, for example, yet Ludacris "speaks against every group you can think of" including women, fellow African-Americans and homosexuals.

"That's not consistent with ETSU's values," Stanton said.

The Ludacris decision marked the second time the city had rejected an act's appearance at Freedom Hall. In 1996, the rock band White Zombie was scheduled to play at Freedom Hall until the City Commission revoked the contract. White Zombie moved the concert to Viking Hall, where further community protests occurred.

Press staff members Deirdre Noonan and Sam Watson contributed to this report.


http://www.timesnews.net/article.dna?_StoryID=3553525



Can't believe the university president didn't know anything about this guy before they started talking about the concert.

Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:50:00 AM EDT
One down, still a lot more to go.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:51:42 AM EDT
I tought you meant shot literaly. Like tupac. I got all excited at the the posibility of another rap war.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:52:14 AM EDT

Originally Posted By M15A2:
I tought you meant shot literaly. Like tupac. I got all excited at the the posibility of another rap war.



Yeah, I realized the pun of the title after I posted it.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:56:05 AM EDT
A lot of folks were VERY pissed off that this was going to happen in the first place - especially since they got rid of the football team because of low funds...

Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:57:10 AM EDT

Originally Posted By M15A2:
I tought you meant shot literaly. Like tupac. I got all excited at the the posibility of another rap war.



+1

Darwin rules.

Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:57:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ASNixon:
A lot of folks were VERY pissed off that this was going to happen in the first place - especially since they got rid of the football team because of low funds...




Two of my friends who attend ETSU were more than a little pissed that their money would be going to fund this concert.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:58:02 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Burley:

Originally Posted By M15A2:
I tought you meant shot literaly. Like tupac. I got all excited at the the posibility of another rap war.



Yeah, I realized the pun of the title after I posted it.



I already had a witty retort thought out, and then I read the post.........


*sigh*

Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:58:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By M15A2:
I tought you meant shot literaly. Like tupac. I got all excited at the the posibility of another rap war.

+1
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:59:43 AM EDT
Good.....keep that POS and his ilk out of this area.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 12:03:12 PM EDT
$85,000 plus? Fuck, give out some scholarships with that and maybe have a few more English 101 classes as well.

Link Posted: 10/4/2005 12:08:53 PM EDT
<quote>"We're frustrated because we haven't shown our side of the story to the city, the commissioners, to whoever they've talked to," Husmillo said. "This isn't for the community. I appreciate their concern in looking out for the best interests of the university, but I think we're absolutely mature enough to look out for our own interests.

"We're all adults here. Them taking this away from us is an infringement of student rights. This is student dollars. This is student money. This is our event," Husmillo said.</quote>

And this knucklehead totallay misses the fact that there are students complaining. Their complaints get dismissed with a "they don't have to go if they don't want to" comment.

What a putz.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 12:16:20 PM EDT

Originally Posted By phobia:
$85,000 plus? Fuck, give out some scholarships with that and maybe have a few more English 101 classes as well.




Fuck that. Drop the fees back to $4 instead of the $20 it was jacked up to. Then give everyone their $16 back.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 12:49:20 PM EDT
and these are supposed to be institutes of higher learning??
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 3:05:10 PM EDT
The Universty of Tn at Martin had the Ying-Yang Twins and Nappy Roots perform before Homecoming...and after they signed a "no-cussing policy" .

My understanding was that the show sucked. Before, I had never heard of the Ying-Yang Twins and was vaguely familiar with Nappy Roots. The townsfolk are pissed at the student activities council for sponsoring the show.

I could care less, just thought it was interesting that this was happening on opposite sides of the same state for the same reasons.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 3:09:32 PM EDT
pffft ludicris is a no talent hack......


gee.. 'VIKING Hall didn't want him...whodathunk it?????


here he is in a USO pic with some silly white people.


http://www.uso.org/pubs/arnold2001/15_1395_8235.cfm
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 3:27:22 PM EDT
My school had Yellowcard come to play. I didnt go.
Link Posted: 10/5/2005 12:47:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ASNixon: A lot of folks were VERY pissed off that this was going to happen in the first place - especially since they got rid of the football team because of low funds...
They got rid of the football team and solicit a cRap star to perform?
Link Posted: 10/5/2005 12:56:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KlubMarcus:

Originally Posted By ASNixon: A lot of folks were VERY pissed off that this was going to happen in the first place - especially since they got rid of the football team because of low funds...
They got rid of the football team and solicit a cRap star to perform?



OH yea and ETSU had a domed football field that now sits unused...

There is also the small unmentioned problem of Freedom Hall Civic Center being located at the local high school in a residential area and a lot of the locals not wanting this at the high school.
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 10:56:41 AM EDT
Now it seems that even though the university never signed a contract, Ludacris still wants the $85K. The local talk shows have been full of this stuff for the last week.


Ludacris demands $85,000 payment

Thursday, October 06, 2005

By SAM WATSON
NET News Service

JOHNSON CITY - Lacking a valid contract, East Tennessee State University's attorney said Wednesday the university would not pay Ludacris the $85,000 demanded by the performer's representatives since the concert had been scrubbed.

"I don't feel there's any ethical, moral or legal obligation to pay unless the venue is available," ETSU attorney Ed Kelly said. "We've tried to act on the up and up."

ETSU canceled the controversial hip-hop concert slated for Oct. 27 at Johnson City's Freedom Hall Civic Center after City Manager Pete Peterson said Monday he would not allow the university to conduct the event in the arena, citing security concerns. Freedom Hall's staff had promised the venue after the state fire marshal disallowed the use of ETSU's Memorial Center for concerts.

Kelly said he had discussed the cancellation with an attorney for the William Morris Agency, a Beverly Hills, Calif.-based agency representing the rapper, on Wednesday, and he reiterated the university's position that no contract had been signed.

He said documents exchanged with the agency clearly contained provisions that no agreement would exist until the university's attorney signed the contracts, and he had signed nothing.

Kelly also said ETSU officials immediately notified the agency Monday that the concert would not happen upon learning that the venue was lost, leaving the university with no further legal obligations.

"They (the agency's representatives), of course, take another position," Kelly said.

WMA's press office did not respond to telephone and e-mail inquiries on Wednesday.

After reviewing the unsigned documents, Kelly said he would not have signed the contract because it contained a "force majeure" clause indicating that ETSU would have been responsible for payment even if a hurricane or other natural disaster forced cancellation.

"I would not have approved it if it had been Peter, Paul and Mary or even Billy Graham," Kelly said. "I didn't sign it and don't intend to sign it."

Kelly said WMA's attorney planned to mail ETSU a letter of demand for the $85,000 in Ludacris' original asking price. The ETSU attorney said he intended to respond that the university had no legal obligation without a signed contract.

ETSU booked the act for its annual homecoming concert after the Student Government Association raised the student activity fee from $4 per semester to $20 last school year to accommodate such events. The student activities office polled students about performers they would like to see in concert, and Ludacris was the first on the resulting list who agreed to appear.

Staff members and SGA officers immediately heard complaints that the performer's lyrical content - off-color and sexually explicit language, illegal drug use, violence and misogyny - would be ill-suited to a university-endorsed program. SGA officers have defended the selection, saying that students could choose whether to attend.

SGA President J.R. Husmillo said earlier in the week that students planned to take their concerns about the cancellation to City Hall.

"We didn't feel like our voice was heard, so we're going on Thursday and make our voice heard at the City Commission," Husmillo said.

Mayor Steve Darden, who was not involved in the Freedom Hall decision, said that upon reading Husmillo's comments he called the SGA president to inform him of the commission's rules of order during meetings.

"I called him just as a courtesy to explain to him how our rules apply," Darden said.

The commission's agenda was set late last week, meaning Husmillo's official request to be heard - which he made while talking with Darden - will require unanimous approval by the commission to be added to the proceedings.

Darden said Husmillo and the SGA will be granted the same consideration as city residents who would like to appear before the commission without inclusion on the agenda.

"If every commissioner wants to hear them, they'll be heard," Darden said. "I made no commitment to them one way or another."

http://www.timesnews.net/article.dna?_StoryID=3554378

Link Posted: 10/6/2005 12:25:13 PM EDT
When I lived in Richmond, VCU had a Juvenile concert. LOTS of fights occurred. The university president and chief of campus police signed off on it because they thought a "Juvenile" concert was for....juveniles.
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 4:39:07 PM EDT
Good news
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 4:49:27 PM EDT
Now if only The Ohio State University can stop having the Heritage Fest on their campus, which they have to bring in the Columbus Police Dept on mandatory work and pay for all the overtime to "keep the peace".
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 4:52:02 PM EDT
I saw Ludacris at Georgia Tech in April.

He was really upset how white the audience was.

He was also really upset that the audience did not know or did not want to chant every single line from every track. He actually had to remember the lines all by himself.

He ended the concert early and I have not listened to any rap since them. Thank god.
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 5:04:42 PM EDT
Eh...I think I've gotten dumber over the years. I like some rap.

I would want to party with Snoop.

We would go streaking.
Link Posted: 10/6/2005 5:46:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Burley:

SGA President J.R. Husmillo said earlier in the week that students planned to take their concerns about the cancellation to City Hall.

"We didn't feel like our voice was heard, so we're going on Thursday and make our voice heard at the City Commission," Husmillo said.




Arrogant snot.

I would certainly hope city hall is listening to actual tax paying citizens and not transient collage kids.
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