Believe it or not, UMBC contains a plethora of talented musicians. Whether it be a capella groups, instrumental ensembles, local bands, DJs or solo musicians, the campus really has a lot to offer if you look hard enough. However, it’s a common complaint that there are not enough musical events held here on campus and more so that these campus musicians do not have many chances to display their talents on campus. Luckily, some of the campus DJs got their chance to shine on November 19 at Lower Flat Tuesday’s.
In an event called Trapsgiving, WMBC gave campus DJs an opportunity to show off their skills and hosted a small dance party. Dancers and trap aficionados alike stopped in throughout the evening to enjoy the finely crafted beats of Deviir, Grahamcracka, Ice Bread, Nod-Eezy and DJ Sole, all UMBC students. Flat Tuesday’s made sure to keep their doors wide open so that all of the Commons could enjoy the hip-hop and trap-laced tracks.
For WMBC, Trapsgiving served a double meaning. It gives the campus DJs a chance of recognition and a chance to show off their skills. However, it also adds more musical events to the UMBC schedule, specifically for DJs.
Evodia Hoff, the Creative and Promotional Manager for WMBC, said, “[WMBC] have had two other DJ nights this semester and are working on bringing them more exposure. We did not previously have any resources on campus for those interested in live DJ mixing, so WMBC decided to make this an extension of the radio.”
Hoff and the rest of WMBC is trying to fight against UMBC’s somewhat quiet music scene with these DJ nights. “People say that UMBC does not have enough exciting events, so why not come out to a night of live music and dancing? I think that this event is fairly unique to UMBC’s students. It is completely run and put together by students who want to entertain and have a good time.”
Ben James aka Ice Bread, one of the DJs at the event and a senior in the visual arts program, is aware of WMBC’s efforts. He thinks it’s important to create more opportunities for DJs to mix for events on campus. “The events serve as an opportunity to learn about new music and just dance off some of the stress of the school week,” said James. “With the radio station, the real difficulty lies in getting people to turn off Spotify, Pandora, Soundcloud, Mixcloud, etc… and let someone else guide their listening experience.”
This is exactly what most students are asking for: music and dancing at no charge, but, of course, there are other musicians and vocalists that want similar experiences on campus. Nick Rynes, who is pursuing a BA in geography and is a gig drummer on campus, said, “I believe that the campus should have music events weekly. Music is an important social element that gathers the student body and shows school spirit. Back in the 70s through the 90s, the campus would host live music performances in D-Hall towards the end of every week. I wouldn’t mind seeing this tradition start up again.”
However few and far between concerts may be, Rynes is thankful for the music events on campus and the groups, like (seb) and WMBC, who host them. “The free music Friday and talent show performance gave me the opportunity to debut my band. I am aware of a battle of the bands this upcoming semester, but there should be many more events throughout the semester.”
It is a shame that UMBC is home to some extremely talented musicians, but there doesn’t seem to be enough spotlight for them and whenever there is, the audience turnout seems to be lacking. If you are looking for more music events through out the year, stay tuned to WMBC and keep up with (seb)’s scheduling. As the events slowly get more and more popular, hopefully the campus musicians will be able to see their dreams of more musical involvement achieve fruition.