Coffeehouse Aims to Create Balance Between Big Bands and Small Performers

Photo By Katie Henry
Photo By Katie Henry
Coffeehouse, an event that occurs every Thursday at the Campus Center, has been a campus favorite for artists and music addicts alike. However, the acts as of late have been crossing more and more into music festival territory as opposed to the acoustic sessions that most are used to in a coffee shop setting – and it’s not necessarily a bad thing.

The change has been a gradual one that started with Lauren Schreiber during her time as Coffeehouse chair in the Spring 2009 semester. Since then, the music has begun to lean more into alternative genres leading to the booking of such bands as Donora, The Five One, The Spring Standards, and Holy F–k.

Junior Reid Levin, the current Coffeehouse chair, wants to not only be a part of the shift, but to push the boundaries as far he can take them. “What I want to do for Coffeehouse is, number one, to have the biggest variety of performances as possible,” Reid said.

Still reeling on the success of Holy F–k, which had the largest crowd that Coffeehouse has seen since its inception, he continued in saying that he plans to reach a wider audience through a vast array of different events such as a possible airbands competition.

“I’ve been talking to a musician called The Masked Marauder who wants to put on a Halloween extravaganza,” he said after the question arose regarding upcoming musicians to look forward to. “We’re looking for people on top of their game.”

Senior Thomas Dewey, a frequent Coffeehouse attendee, is very happy about the shift in musical acts during the past few semesters. “While I love the campus bands, I do also love seeing really good bands with really good sounds because we haven’t really seen that on this small campus,” he said to me.

He also glorified the band that visited before Holy F–k, Pearl and the Beard. “I really like this trend. It gives us more credibility as a venue. Bigger names you have, the bigger names you get. Singer-songwriters are great, but they can only go so many places – they can only get so loud.”

However, while Reid wants to spoil Coffeehouse attendees with grandeur and surreal experiences, he still wants the open mic element of the event to play a factor. “I want to offer everyone an equal opportunity to play,” he said.

It seems like Coffeehouse is moving into a territory that is being welcomed quite warmly by the campus community, but it’s okay for the performers who want to perform – the goal of Coffeehouse now seems to be a perfect balance of bands.

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