Bustin’ Out the B1 Block Party
Observer Scene | Friday, August 28, 2009
On Saturday from 5 to 11 p.m. Legends will host one its biggest events to date – the B1 Block Party – in the B1 parking lot outside of Legends. The 6,000-person party will feature reggae/hip hop sensation Matisyahu, backed by pop band Eric Hutchinson and two student bands, Samurai Jim and the Pat McKillen Band. There will also be appearances by DJ That’s Right, New Orleans’ New Wave Brass Band, the RhythmWorks Drum Team, BET’s DJ ProStyle and DJ Cartiac live from the Legends rooftop. How did Notre Dame go from having The Show the first weekend back to a huge outdoor party with some of the nation’s top performers? Says Legends General Manager Aaron Perri, “The idea arose from … the confidence I had in the Legends team to pull something like this off … I can’t think of a better way to showcase what we do here at Legends week in and week out than to unleash the B1 Block Party right at the beginning of the year.” The party is open to all Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross students and will be complete with a huge Lollapalooza-style main stage, promotional giveaways, cornhole, a text to screen and LED video walls. The first 2000 through the door will receive free Chipotle chips and guac (that’s right, free guac). Popular food chains including Chick-Fil-A, Sonic, Papa Murphy’s Pizza, Kona Ice and ND Concessions will be stationed throughout the lot. Every food item will be affordably priced at $3 or below, and a beer garden will be available to the 21-and-over crowd.The concert’s supporting act, singer-songwriter Eric Hutchinson, blurs the boundaries between rock, folk pop and powerpop, combining various influences to create a sound that is uniquely his. Hutchinson’s song “Rock and Roll” (‘if he wanna rock he rocks, if he wanna roll he rolls’) reached No.1 airplay in the U.S. and gained him wide publicity. Hutchinson has been compared to Ben Folds and Jason Mraz, and has toured with acts like O.A.R and Matt Nathanson.The headlining Matisyahu will give a truly unique performance. The Hasidic Jewish reggae musician blends his passion for the Jewish faith with the cultural sounds of reggae, rap and hip-hop. As a young teenager, Matisyahu was a self-proclaimed dreadlocks-bearing, Birkenstock-wearing “Deadhead.” However, after discovering a latent connection to God in the mountains of Colorado followed by taking a pilgrimage to Israel, Matisyahu ultimately decided to become a Hasidic Jew and abide by traditional Jewish law. He released his first album in 2004 but his career really took off after doing a guest set for Phish at Bonnaroo in 2005. He has since released three studio albums – the latest, “LIGHT,” was released on Aug. 25. Matisyahu’s spirituality comes through his music clearly and powerfully, which makes for a riveting concert experience. The party still isn’t over when Matisyahu finishes up around 11. Head inside to the Legends Nightclub for an after party with New York City’s DJ Prostyle until the early hours of the morning. According to Perri, a common reaction to the B1 Block Party is almost incredulity. He says, “In talking to people the continuous reaction is ‘I can’t believe you’re doing this! A party in the parking lot? A DJ on the roof? A beer garden? … To say this will be an exciting event is an understatement.”Don’t miss this one, because there won’t be another party like it right in Notre Dame’s backyard all year. The B1 Block Party will surely be the most packed place on campus Saturday from the early evening on. So start the year off right – catch up with friends, eat some good food and dance to good music. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door or pre-ordered online. For more information check out www.b1blockparty.com.