Hip Hop Makes its Way to the Classic City
When Matt Tompkins joined the Music Business Program back in August, he had one goal in mind: to bring hip-hop to the Classic City. Working with fellow MBUSer Kisan Patel, Tompkins contacted 30-50 artists in hopes of booking a show for the upcoming semester. Wale, who will be headlining a show at the Georgia Theatre tomorrow night, was one of them.
Tompkins spoke with Scott Orvold, talent-buyer for the Theatre, when he and Theatre co-owner, Wilmot Greene, visited the MBUS 4100 class at the start of the year. The next day, he found himself sitting with Orvold at the venue discussing potential performers.
“Scott had heard good things about Wale,” Tompkins said. “He’s a very talented artist, one that we thought would make a good draw and probably sell out.”
Wale’s recent album release, Ambition, also contributed to successful ticket sales. The album debuted at number two on the Billboard Top 200 having sold 164,000 copies in its first week.
“The fact that the album came out at such a perfect time—about a month ago—helped raise awareness for the show,” Tompkins said, “and I think the show will help raise awareness for good music.”
Wale’s performance appears to be one of the first of many steps in expanding the urban music scene here in Athens. Yelawolf, who also had a recent album release on the Billboard 200, performed at the Georgia Theatre last Wednesday. Big Boi and Childish Gambino performed to sold out audiences earlier in the season as well.
“There’s a whole bunch of stuff down the pipeline and a really bright future for hip-hop in Athens right now,” Tompkins said.
Tickets for the Wale concert are available at GeorgiaTheatre.com. $18
Article by Taylor Russell//Follow her on Twitter
Photo from The Georgia Theatre website