GWU's Spring Fling: WALK THE MOON and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis- 4/7/13

Last week, young strapping men in the gym were seen practicing squats with their female friends perched upon their muscley shoulders.

Last week, couples everywhere began training for a makeout marathon, testing social mores by pushing the limits of over-the-bra touching in public.

Last week, Forever 21 sold out of neon crop tops and Vineyard Vines had to order more salmon chubbies.

Reader, you guessed right: It was time, once again, for Spring Fling!

Petricca and bassist Kevin Ray

Spring Fling is a campus-wide, all-day event (although, let’s be real: most of GW only shows up for the headlining musical act, ignoring Program Board’s meticulous efforts at planning a fun-in-the-sun college fest). At past Spring Flings, you could leap endlessly on a moonbounce, play cornhole, and whack your roommate silly with giant Q-tips.  This year, PB continued their well-loved tradition of giving away free stuff (pizza, soda, arranging a Battle Royale for oversized tank tops), but was seriously lacking in the activities department. Most students were glad to lounge in the sun or line up early at the front of the stage in preparation for the live music ahead.

And it’s no wonder why we enjoyed no inflatable sumo wrestling this year—the concert planning committee clearly required a larger chunk of the budget in order to book pop-rockers and capitalization enthusiasts WALK THE MOON and hype machine DJ/rapper duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. While these two acts occupy completely different genres, they appeal to the same audience—fun-loving college students with a penchant for the boogie.

Nicholas Petricca

Ohio’s WALK THE MOON bounced onstage, faces painted in party war paint.  Lead singer Nicholas Petricca seemed genuinely glad to be in Foggy Bottom. They played a solid set of WTM originals, in addition to a noteworthy cover of Fleet Foxes’ “White Winter Hymnal.” Energy was through the roof, both onstage and in the crowd. Whether in summer festival-inspired flower crowns and tie-dye or in Greek Week tees, Colonials unleashed the groove. The sun still shined, the audience size was manageable, and pregame buzzes were still going strong.  One could safely dance (or, more realistically, slightly shimmy in place) without endangering herself or others.

But in the 45 minutes between the band and the rapper, even more Flingers emerged from the woodwork. The evening became a people-watching extravaganza: count how many backwards hats you can in ten seconds! Whose bleached jhorts were the most bootylicious? How much longer can this one couple bicker? What looks might we see at Coachella 2013? And a good time was had by all in the WALK THE MOON-Macklemore Interregnum.

At long last, the lights dimmed. The giant screen on stage awakened with color, declaring the artists and their album, The Heist, as if you didn’t already know.  The handsome and enigmatic Seattle native burst onto the scene in a George Washington-esque jacket, incurring a tsunami-sized wave of cheers from the audience. And he responded with equal enthusiasm, as pumped to perform for U Yard as if it were a sold-out Madison Square Garden.

In about an hour, Macklemore tore through hits like “Thrift Shop,” “Same Love,” and “Can’t Hold Us,” appropriately concluding with “And We Danced.” Throughout, this natural performer endorsed House of Cards, his general love for all things Kevin Spacey (most readers wouldn’t disagree with him), and of course, thrifting. When Macklemore asked why students weren’t hanging from trees, some brash souls immediately put his suggestion into action, much to the chagrin of the University Police. Ryan Lewis, the rapper’s accessory and part time DJ, delivered the beats we’ve grown to love as the endlessly entertaining Owuor Arunga trumpeted his way to glory.  Even the kid who had yet to speak in your Media History discussion couldn’t help but raise his arms in victory. For the Colonials, Spring Fling is one of a mere handful of campus-wide events and they planned to make the most of it. And we danced and had a really, really, really good time.

See all of the photos from Spring Fling on our Facebook page!   http://www.facebook.com/gwradio

-Tori Kerr

-Photography: © 2013 WRGW District Radio and Helen Jiang, all rights reserved.

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