MACON – Mercer's annual Bearstock will have a different format in its 10th year, as the University's student programming board, QuadWorks, recently announced that the event will take place in two parts.
The traditional outdoor music festival, which is free and open to the public, will take place April 8 from 1-6 p.m. in Tattnall Square Park, followed by a ticketed concert for Mercer students and their guests from 8-11 p.m. in Hawkins Arena.
“Bearstock: After Dark,” as the concert is being billed, will be headlined by rapper Waka Flocka Flame, DJ and producer DJ Mustard and electronic dance music (EDM) artist Gazzo. The concert is open to Mercer students, who are each allowed to bring up to two guests. Students get in free with their Mercer ID, and guests must purchase tickets for $5 each at the door. Doors open at 7 p.m.
The family-friendly, free outdoor music festival in Tattnall Square Park will feature five local and regional artists – Savannah Alday, Hindsight, Night Owl, Some Kids and Abby Henry – as well as food and merchandise vendors.
“I'm excited that we're able to provide a diverse group of artists this year. This is going to be a Bearstock to remember,” said Nate Flowers, president of QuadWorks.
Waka Flocka Flame is a New York-born, Atlanta-based rapper whose debut album, “Flockavelli,” released in 2010, features the hit singles “O Let's Do It,” Hard in da Paint” and “No Hands,” the latter of which peaked at No. 13 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. His second album, “Triple F. Life: Friends, Fans and Family,” debuted in 2012, and he has since released several mixtapes.
DJ Mustard, born Dijon McFarlane, is a Los Angeles DJ and producer who has coined the “rachet” sound. He has collaborated with Jennifer Lopez, T-Pain, Trey Songz and more, and produced hits for the likes of Tyga (“Rack City”), 2 Chainz (“I'm Different), Young Jeezy (“R.I.P.”), Kid Ink (“Show Me”) and Y.G. (“My Hitta”). His debut album, “10 Summers,” was released in 2014.
New Jersey native Michael Gazzo began his career in EDM in 2011 and has released official remixes for artists like dBerrie (“Aquarius”) and Rudimental (“Free”), as well as originals “The Cage EP” on the Disco Fries' Liftoff Recordings and “Funky Beats” on Fedde Le Grand's Flamingo Recordings. Nine of his songs have reached the hypem.com overall top 10, and three remixes have reached No. 1.
“I believe this year's Bearstock is definitely one for the books. It will give students the feel of a music festival for one part of the day and the concert feel at night,” said Mariyum Khan, a member of the Mercer Live Committee of QuadWorks that plans the annual event.