After a hip-hop-centric fall semester, the Carolina Union Activities Board is swapping out sick beats for an acoustic guitar.
Sam Beam, also known by his stage and recording name Iron & Wine, will perform an acoustic set to a sold-out audience in Memorial Hall.
But this isn’t Beam’s first time inside Memorial Hall. The musician performed to a sold-out audience in 2008 as well.
“We’ve cycled through a new group of four-year students, so we thought it was time to bring him back,” said Tom Low, president of CUAB. “And we’ve done a lot of hip-hop in the fall, so we wanted to change it up for the spring.”
Low said the success of Beam’s 2008 performance served as a barometer of the anticipated success of tonight’s performance.
“It was very popular then, so we knew it would be successful again,” Low said.
Evan Allan, music chair for CUAB, said the idea to bring Beam back to UNC began as a possible end-of-the-year concert but was not deemed appropriate for that spot.
“We didn’t know if it was big enough or had a wide enough range to be labeled that,” Allan said. “So I decided to take it on myself and make sure it got put on.”
Allan said he was confident Beam’s music would have a far-reaching effect on campus.
“I know he has an indie, folky, rock feel that is pretty popular among students and the community, so I assumed the response would be pretty positive,” Allan said.
“Iron & Wine isn’t the type of music to just die off or become unpopular just because he hasn’t put out a lot in the past few years — I didn’t think his popularity has diminished much.”
The Secret Sisters, who had a song on “The Hunger Games” soundtrack and is currently touring with Iron & Wine, will open for Beam tomorrow night and bring some of its bluegrass sound to Memorial Hall.
“There’s no way to appease everyone with one artist, but we’ve been pretty successful in bringing in a diverse group of artists and trying to appease as many students as possible,” Allan said.
Lauren Sacks, assistant director of student learning and activities and CUAB’s adviser, said the contract between the University and Iron & Wine was not yet completed.
“There were some negotiations that went back and forth, and because of that the contract had to go through a couple revisions,” she said. “So the contract is not completely finalized at this point.”
Allan said the 60- to 75-minute set will provide an intimate feel.
“I’m sure it will be nice,” Allan said. “A relaxing evening with Sam.”
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