Fall concert offers a refreshing sense of normalcy

Emma Bartlett, Arts & Culture Editor

After a year of hosting virtual concerts for students, the Campus Entertainment Network (CEN) welcomed Roger Williams University’s campus community back to school with an in-person concert consisting of three musical guests on Sept. 5. The two-hour long event, which concluded the organization’s “1, 2, 3 Weekend,” included an array of musical talent that students found themselves dancing to throughout the afternoon and into the early evening.

“[The event] was chill. I really enjoyed the main guy, Lathan Warlick,” said freshman Grey Simmons.

Warlick, the main act of the night, captivated the audience with his original music. The country-rapper even showed off his dance moves per the audience’s request, having begun his career as a hip hop dancer. Warlick owned the stage throughout his performance, energizing all those who were dancing in front of him. His music connected with the audience so well that students were buying shirts he had for sale during the show.

One of the two musical guests preceding Warlick included Jeffrey East. East, a one-man band from Los Angeles, warmed up the crowd with his humor and engaged the audience in his songs by having a call and response; the crowd embraced his soulful country songs.

David J, as the other musical guest, entertained students with his band’s newly released songs. The 17-year-old country singer put on an impressive show with his drummer, bassist and guitarist. For J, performing in-person again has been an exciting experience. His favorite part about performing? The crowd.

“I was very bored at home and am glad to see people here,” said J.

The crowd also enjoyed being back in-person. With a buffet-style dinner hosted by Bon Appetit and games including cornhole, connect four and bocce, groups of friends enjoying the summer weather and music filled the gravel lot outside of the North Campus Residence Hall.

“I really liked the music,” said first-year Sophia Thomas.

As the first concert of the fall semester, CEN set the bar high for what to expect at in-person events for the rest of the academic year. The refreshing sense of normalcy elevated the event, and it was nice to see smiles across students’ maskless faces in the crowd.