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The Grape Asks: Who should perform next at Solarity?

by Levi Dayan & Kira Mesch

[originally published August 2021]


Who Should Come to Solarity Next

Levi Dayan and Kira Mesch

Sublime With Rome

Solstice proved that Solarity can happen in the summertime, and you don’t have to practice Santeria (whatever that is) or have no crystal ball to know who runs the summertime. I’m of course referring to the band Sublime, the Long Beach kings with the funky fresh hits and the Sublime reggae style. Lead singer Bradley Nowell may have kicked the bucket 25 years ago, but with some guy named Rome filling in, Sublime is still more than well-qualified to represent the L.B.C., as well as the O.B.C. (O-Berlin College that is!) And not to speak ill of the dead, but I think Sublime With Rome are much better than the original band.

Of course, as much as being in Oberlin for the summer has been a nonstop party train running on dope sex and debauchery, let’s not forget that first and foremost we are here to learn. With our motto of Learning and Labor in mind, it’s absolutely insane that my man Eric Clapton hasn’t been booked to do Solarity yet. If we’re talking Learning, there’s no better way to learn about the history of Blues than seeing the bloke who invented it all by himself. And if we’re talking Labor, no one’s more committed than old Slowhand. Whether it’s the labor of turning the Blues into something actually worth a shit, the labor of supporting brave truth-tellers like Enoch Powell, or his concern for the labor being stolen from Brits by filthy Caribbean immigrants, Clapton’s practically the king of this labor shit. But Learning and Labor is meaningless without the free exchange of different ideas, and a performance from Clapton would inject (no pun intended) some much needed vaccine discourse into this fledgling campus. Clapton’s got a lot to say, and the more you listen, the more you’ll agree with him!

And while we’re on the subject of brave truth-tellers, I’d be remiss to mention John Popper of the band Blues Traveller. You may remember them as the guys that did that one 90s song with the ear-scraping nine-minute long harmonica solo, but I like to think of John Popper, vintage weaponry collector, gun enthusiast, professional weed smoker, and (this part goes without saying) libertarian, as the great Sex Man of music. But the aforementioned harmonica torture certainly helps to get those boners poppin’ (no pun intended). At least if you’re into that kind of shit.

While COVID was what pushed Solarity around this year, the truth is that we are the epicenter of a much more contagious, much more powerful viral epidemic: Clay Aiken fever. Clay Aiken has touched the souls of millions of Claymates around the world, and though he may have lost American Idol to Ruben Studdard, and lost his congressional race to some random Republican, he certainly hasn’t lost the affection of Obies. According to sources such as and, Oberlin is ranked third for most Claymates on campus, behind only University of Tampa and Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Although Clay Aiken’s headlining performance at Solarity may only exist in our maddeningly reoccurring dreams, I can reasonably imagine that as he belts out a rendition of “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” it will ignite a raging sea of erections in the audience.

What a shame that everyone’s favorite one-hit-wonder trio and Masked Singer contestant, Hanson, hasn’t yet visited the Oberlin campus! While some one hit wonders have devolved into debauchery, these former teenage heartthrobs have stayed on the straight and narrow, releasing album after album of God-honoring bangers. When we invite them to campus, Zac, Taylor, and Isaac Hanson are going to have everyone MMMBop-ing their bodies to the rhythm! If we’re lucky, we might even get them to perform something from their fan-favorite 2017 holiday album, Finally It’s Christmas.

Who says we can’t have a little family-friendly fun at Solarity? If we want to get some sing-alongs going, who better to invite than children’s musician, Raffi! Coming off the release of his newest album, Raffi: The Remixes, Raffi’s attempts to appeal to an older Gen-Z audience could benefit from a little promotion at Solarity! I’m sure he’ll be able to get everyone in the Solarity audience moving their heads to the beat with classic songs like Shake My Sillies Out, Apples and Bananas, Baby Beluga, and Wheels on the Bus, and newer soon-to-be-classics like Twinkle Twinkle Little Star (Marshmello’s Version), Brush Your Teeth (Featuring cupcakKe), Bananaphone (Remix) [Featuring Charli XCX], and more!

As a personal friend of Liam Gallagher, I have his word that he will, if begged, come to Oberlin for Solarity on the one condition that he will be performing only his upcoming ambient music project, Probably, Sort of, Stop Asking Me You Fucking Prick. He also told me over the phone upon my inquiry that: “If you even try to get that [expletive] brother of mine within 50 miles of campus, I will personally make your life a living hell.” Ruh roh! Guess we won’t be hearing “Wonderwall” any time soon!

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t think that Adam Levine is the sexiest piece of meat on the face of this planet. Everything about him makes me want to have him impregnate me with his flawless, gleaming semen, like his shiny hair, or the tattoo across his stomach that says “CALIFORNIA.” Hubba hubba! I don’t know many people who wouldn’t want to see him take off his shirt while he’s in the middle of performing “Animals” and see his chest damp with sweat because he’s been performing with such visceral sexual intensity. Unfortunately, Adam might be too busy being Emmy-nominated for The Voice along with that fucking hack Blake Shelton and combing his perfect hair to grace us with his presence, so Oberlin might have to settle for Maroon 5 without Adam Levine instead. We can make some “Memories” with the guy with the long hair whose sister was on Project Runway and also the other three! If you’re reading this, I love you Adam!!!1!


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