Sporcle Your Life Away

Need to kill some time between classes? Over the summer I was introduced to Sporcle, a trivia website, and I was tragically hooked. I despise feeling like I need to check certain websites everyday in order to function, but I find myself taking the daily quizzes as if it were a matter of life and death. So when JMU came up in one quiz I was elated. Granted, this statement is coming from a guy who consistently watches Jeopardy (and you better believe that I voted for Cash Cab‘s Ben Bailey for our Convo show).

picture from sporcle.com

I go out of my way to take these assessments of useless knowledge, but if you find yourself unable to complete life’s daily tasks due to over-sporcling please do yourself a favor and come out to the UPB booth at Student Org Night tomorrow to give yourself some real work to do.

By the way, I only got 10/30 on the quiz linked above. Geography’s just not my thing.

– Stephen

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80 One In a Million

JMU is a pioneer in the music industry. One of JMU’s many resources that I feel is not fully realized by the Dukes is our own 80 One Records. I recently had Danny Lampton, the Director of the record label for the 08-09 school year answer a few questions for me.
  • What is 80 One Records and why should the JMU students be interested in its presence on the campus?

Students should be interested in 80 One Records because it is one of the few student-run record labels in the nation, and it can only be as strong as the committee members who run it! Its existence allows for the nurturing of both JMU and local music artists, and also the entertainment and education of JMU students about all aspects of the music industry. In this, students who are interested in getting involved in the music industry in any capacity after college can get an invaluable head start by being involved with 80 One Records.

  • What was the state of the label when you took over last fall, and what kind of changes did you make?

Just one year ago, the committee was in a sort of identity-crisis. The very real changes in the music industry were showing their tangible impact with the label. This is why the committee regrouped and put an enhanced focus on both the label’s capacity and its goals for the future. This has translated to 80 One Records having 3 facets reflecting its reach and the current state of the music industry: Middle Agent (to network with artists and organizations to provide for groundbreaking events); Venue (to provide the appropriate place on campus for performances and to seek out a high level and diverse palette of artists); and Record Label (to maintain the original intent of the label to administer all aspects of a record label at the professional level).

  • What are the short-term and long-term goals, especially now that UPB has set a revenue requirement for the label?

The idea is that this added pressure for revenue expectations will encourage committee member participation at the highest level so that 80 One Records not only attracts numerous hot artists, but also that the added incentive will maintain the integrity of the committee for the long-term.

  • What was your most memorable/favorite experience in the last year with 80 One?
My most memorable experience working with 80 One Records was the success of the 1st annual Record Deal Rumble. This provided for an excited and engaged committee and for a revamped and reputable 80 One Records so that we had better luck with our endeavors for the year.
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80 One Records
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Keep on the look out for future 80 One Records events, such as the return of the Record Deal Rumble this October. I’d also suggest you tune in to one of our most prominent artists Josh Vana and let us know what you think.
– Stephen

Old Might be Gold, But New’s Not So Bad Either…

Growing up I played Third Eye Blind to death. I’m sure my family got tired of “Jumper,” “Semi-Charmed Life,” and my personal favorite “How’s It Going to Be.” As excited as I am about hearing these classics in a little over a month, I got slightly nervous when I found out that the band was releasing a CD with new material this summer. Ursa Major debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 — making it the band’s highest charting work to date. My worries were somewhat alleviated after this news, but I was still skeptical. At this point, I went to Grooveshark (better than Pandora) and listened to their new sound. After hearing the album, all I can say is that I am at a new level of anticipation for this October.

– Stephen

Third Eye Blind is Coming to JMU

That’s right. After the swirling rumors not just this year, but last year as well, UPB is proudly presenting Third Eye Blind as our fall concert. The show is going to be October 8th in Convo and since nothing quite compares to the alternative music of the 90’s I am positive I am not alone in feeling enthusiastic about this one.

Announcing our show may leave many wondering how the selection process works. Our middle agent Melissa provides us with a list of all touring artists available for the fall. Our budget restricts us from some of the grotesquely expensive entertainers…as if we could actually bring Lil Wayne guys. However, barring those exclusions the program board tries to make our concert as much of a student body decision as possible. You might recall a survey sitting in the inbox of your webmail a few months back. On this form you were given choices as to your top rock, rap, country, and comedy options.

Third Eye Blind

Angela, our director of Center Stage, then analyzed the results and reported the top options to the rest of Exec over the summer. Third Eye Blind was the overwhelming winner. When we initially approached them, they renegotiated their flat fee to become the most expensive show UPB’s brought to this campus, and the only date that they had available happened to be October 8th…. in other words a certain PR Director’s 21st birthday. We debated as a group and came to a consensus that 3EB was still far and away the best choice for JMU this year.

The 21st birthday is the most sacred day to the majority of college students. They feel that the world should bow down and the entire collegiate population should stop everything and help them celebrate their monumental occasion. I am no different than any of these people. However, if there was ever a reason to not be devastated that you have to work on your birthday… I’m going to have to say that it would be working with and having backstage access to a Third Eye Blind concert. Expect to hear a lot more about the band in the coming weeks.

If you are interested in a more in depth look behind the scenes you should read JMUWindbreaker ‘s latest post

– Stephen

Life Might Not Be Such A Beach Anymore…

As a junior at JMU, I finally witnessed the infamous religious rants on the commons yesterday. I had always been left wondering why everybody always came back from this man’s preachings so fired up, and now I know why. I mean who doesn’t appreciate being called a sinner who’s going to burn for an eternity?

beach 1With an abundance of controversy and elevated vocal chords I anxiously await the transformation the commons will take today– from the coercive exchanges to the calm ‘beach” of the Aloha Crazy Commons. The coastline is my personal version of Eden (I’d love to hear a certain pastor’s reaction to that statement). Wherever my life takes me, I hope one day to settle down as close to the ocean as possible.

That is…. if the beaches will still be there. With these future aspirations of a life by the sea, I am hoping that the beach will still be there despite erosion of the coastline from global warming. According to hamptonroads.com, an estimated 167,000 acres of dry land will be covered within the century.

We are fast approaching a “tipping point,” after which we can never recover inbeach 2 terms of our environment. I found President Obama’s plan for actually cooling the earth’s atmosphere to help slow global warming, called geoengineering, an interesting solution to look into.

Think this is either the solution to all our problems or the cause of the alleged end of the world in 2012? I’d love to hear it from you guys.

– Stephen

Welcome to the UPB Blog!

Hi there!

My name is Annie Blewett, and I am the president of the University Program Board this school year. I would like to be the first to say, since you have stumbled upon on our blog…WELCOME! The idea for a UPB blog began when we decided that we wanted to increase our availability, transparency, and conversations with the JMU students. Everything UPB does is with the students in mind, and we are constantly looking for new suggestions and constructive criticism to make our programs the best that they can be. If you have an idea for a comedian, musician, co-sponsorship, or anything else, please send an e-mail my way (annie.blewett@gmail.com), and we will try our best to make it happen.sunonly

The content of this blog will be written by our wonderful PR Director, Stephen Eure with help from other members of the executive council. We hope to make this site interesting and interactive, and posts will feature our musings on upcoming events and issues that are happening on campus. Leave comments, vote in polls, and let us know how you think we’re doing!

Happy Reading!

Annie