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Wacka Flocka Flame set to perform for River Bash

BY JASMINE PUTNEY | APRIL 23, 2015 5:00 AM

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Waka Flocka Flame — a rapper, Atlanta native, and, according to a video released through Rolling Stone on April 20, a presidential hopeful — will follow Marco Rubio and Hillary Clinton to Iowa this week for a very different kind of stump speech.

At 5:30 p.m. today, University of Iowa fraternity Sigma Chi will be host Waka Flocka for its River Bash at the chapter’s house, 703 N. Dubuque St. All proceeds of the concert will be donated to the Huntsman Cancer Foundation. River Bash co-manager Braden Kusay said this year’s show will be the revival of a long-forgotten tradition.

“We found an old ticket from a Sigma Chi River Bash held in 1985, so we decided to name our concert River Bash and bring it back to life,” he said. "We are planning to make River Bash a yearly concert to end our week of Derby Days.”

The River Bash will be the final celebration of the Sigma Chi Derby Days at the UI. Derby Days is a nationwide philanthropy event that originally began in 1933 at the University of California-Berkeley. This year’s version at the UI featured events such as banner painting, a dunk tank, football toss, and volleyball tournament. 

“Derby Days takes place over a week, and the goal is to raise as much money for Huntsman Cancer Foundation as possible. Each chapter of Sigma Chi does different events,” Kusay said. “This year, we decided that we were going to cap off our week of events with the biggest philanthropy concert this campus has seen.”

Headlining this year’s River Bash and making his return to Iowa City is hip-hop artist Waka Flocka Flame, who gained national recognition after releasing the hit single “No Hands” in 2010. The concert will also feature many up-and-coming musicians such as Sendin and Louis the Child.

River Bash co-manager and local DJ Gino Jacobazzi, or “Gino Jocko,” will also take the stage.

Jacobazzi originally encountered electronic dance music as a freshman in high school and has since made the interest an occupation.

“I am a resident DJ at Summit here on campus and perform there every weekend, so playing in front of a live audience is something that I’ve worked into my comfort zone,” he said. “That said, playing a festival-style concert as big as this one in my own backyard will definitely be a new experience for me.”

Other opening acts include the Chicago DJ duo Win and Woo. Nicholas “Win” Winholt said they’re looking forward to the River Bash because they never have a bad time in Iowa and, after all, “It’s friggin’ Waka Flocka.”

Winholt said creating their music is like putting together a fun puzzle, full of emotions, thoughts, and feelings.

“Our organic sound and thought process [distinguishes us],” he said. “We make music that we like for ourselves, music that is timeless. Then we hope that others feel the same.”

Kusay said that River Bash is open to everyone with a valid student ID, not just the greek community. Jacobazzi hopes that the success of the event will reflect the passion so many people have put into ensuring that this party will not only be enjoyable but serve a greater purpose as well.

“The effort that has been put into this event from the entire house as a whole, the amount of support we’ve received from local Iowa City businesses and alumni to make this happen, and the fact that this is a philanthropy event that goes to such a great cause will make all of the hard work worth it and be instantly gratifying,” Jacobazzi said.


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