“Gambino! Gambino! Gambino!” It was 6:56 in the evening, the show had not even started and yet the crowd was chanting Childish Gambino’s name over and over. As the night went on, the crowd’s energy level only intensified.
Stony Brook University’s Brookfest show took place this Wednesday at 7 p.m. However, people were waiting in line as early as 3 p.m.. By the time the doors opened at 6, the line stretched all the way from Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium to beyond the Campus Recreation Center. Although this was the second time the concert took place at the stadium, this time, students had the option to stand on the field.
As people poured into the stadium, Stony Brook student and performer Kameron Myers, also known as Enclave, had a DJ station set up on stage. He pumped out original work as well as mixes to popular songs. The students seemed to respond well to their fellow Seawolf as most nodded their heads to the music and rocked back and forth with the rhythm.
As soon as Enclave left the stage, the chanting began. Chanting quickly turned to cheering as the screen behind the stage came to life with static images and Childish Gambino came out. He started the night off with the song “l. Crawl,” a great song to pump people up. The beat was steady but powerful and allowed Gambino to rap to a faster pace.
For the first half of Gambino’s time on stage, he stuck mainly to songs from his most recent album, “Because the Internet.” But eventually, he transitioned to songs from his first studio album, “Camp” and then did a few tracks from his mixtapes. Something fans seemed to really enjoy was how Gambino would start rapping one of his older songs and flow into another song. He mashed up his own tracks and managed to make them sound great together.
Gambino was also very responsive to the crowd. In between songs, he would tell the crowd to get pumped and at one point, he even pointed out how some students were being mediated by security. Gambino was very animated as he rapped. It looked like he wanted the crowd to get into his music as much as he was. He was so into his performance that he even dropped the mic after a song.
When Gambino finished his set, there were a few brief chants from the audience. They were shouting for an encore. The chanting was short lived as the crowd realized Diplo would soon be on next.
The crowd had been well-behaved for most of Childish’s set. Only one person tried to crowd surf and they were immediately stopped by security. But, during the transition between Gambino and Diplo, things got hectic in the standing areas on the field. People in the back continuously pushed forward, causing the people in the front much discomfort and security was constantly stepping in to yell at students.
Things calmed down for a bit, but as soon as Diplo stepped out on stage, the audience pushed forward once again. However, students were not complaining when the music started. In fact, students immediately got into the pulsating bass and mash-ups of music.
Diplo’s performance felt like being in a club or at a bumping rave. By this time, the sun had set and the flashing lights from the stage really helped set the mood. Students swayed to the music. Hands pulsated in the air and students in both the stands and on the field were dancing to the music.
While Diplo was not quite as animated as Gambino, he still managed to get the crowd just as excited, if not more. He started off asking the audience what a Seawolf was.
He then broke open a bottle of water and doused the crowd below. In the duration of his performance, he did not just stay behind his DJ station either. He would occasionally get up on the table his equipment was on and command the audience to jump or clap or twerk.
Diplo had declared a few days prior to the concert via his Twitter, that he was determined to break the world record for the most people twerking for two minutes, and break the record he did. At one point in his set, he motioned to the girls closest to the front to join him up on stage to twerk. Soon after, Diplo had assembled an army of twerking college girls onstage.
Near the end of the set, security escorted the lucky ladies off stage and Diplo regretfully told the crowd that he had to leave—but not before leaving them with one more song. The crowd went crazy for him and his last mix really had people jumping, bumping and grinding. By this point, Brookfest felt less like a concert and more like a giant party.
All-in-all, the Undergraduate Student Government and the Student Activity Board seemed to pull off the event fairly well.
This Brookfest is going to be a hard one to beat next year.