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The Third Degree with Hoodie Allen

Author Name: Sam Helm  

Published On Feb 18th, 2017

We recently had the opportunity to talk with Hoodie Allen where we put him through The Third Degree - our segment where we ask members of the college entertainment community about their experiences. The interview has been lightly edited for clarity.


What's the first thing that comes to mind when you're thinking about performing college shows and why?

I think the first thing for me is that I want to learn about the schools. I really want to create a unique and personal experience, and I do the research to bring that. I want to make it a great time. And secondly, the students that come to my shows are the ones that really want to be there and are the ones that make the most out of their college experience. They're embracing what's being offered, and I really like that kind of outgoing crowd.

What's your most memorable show, good or bad?

Haha, a bad one comes to mind immediately but I don't know if I want to put that school on blast. I'll just say this - there were two really silly ones, before I started working with the student boards, the programming teams. My first shows, right after I graduated, were my and my DJ going to frats, playing shows in basements. These were the very early days. We went to one school where they didn't really have speakers or a mic. Like they just had a drum mic, which doesn't really work for vocals. And they were looking for an hour and a half of music, and I only had 10 songs on my album. So I tried to free style for 30 minutes, which they did not like... so I wound up feeling bad about myself.

The best one was at Unversity of Wisconsin Milwaukee with twentyonepilots. This is right before they went on to explode. It was an amazing crowd, and it was fun to play with those guys, because they're just great. It was a great show.

What's one piece of wisdom you'd want to offer a college programmer?

Make sure you hire good sound guys and staff. It's hard when you're flying in and equipment is rented and you're working on the fly, and you want to do the best show. Work hard, and work together.