“The shooting that happened at Static Lounge during the DayGo Unity event last summer was due to the outside scheduling of gang members as headliners,” says local promoter Jimmy Powers. “It resulted in [Static Lounge] canceling the Urban Underground Weekly, which provided an 18-and-up hip-hop event every Thursday.”
An off-duty police officer working security was shot in the neck in front of downtown’s Static Lounge on August 7, 2008, during a multiband hip-hop event. According to Powers, “After I talked for months with JiJi Strong, the promoter and organizer of Urban Underground, I finally convinced her to come back to San Diego once a month at 710 Beach Club in P.B.
“These shows will give the opportunity for local hip-hop groups to open for nationally known headliners at ticket presale quotas well below those offered by companies such as Los Angeles–based Sean Healy [Presents], who routinely makes openers at Canes sell $1000 to $2000 worth of presale tickets to ensure the highest achievable profit by taking advantage of the ambition of local artists.”
While Sean Healy Presents did not respond to email requests, its website states, “We do expect each act to bring a minimum amount of people to any SHP gig. Once you have met the minimum booking requirements, you go into the pay-scale portion of your door receipts.”
Powers says the monthly 710 Beach Club events will require locals to provide only $200 in ticket sales. “Our structure calls for openers to be given 40 tickets with a $12 face value. They’re allowed to keep the extra $280 for their work if they happen to sell all 40 tickets. This ensures we’re able to cover the overhead and cost of the headliner.”
JiJi Strong: “At first we were reluctant to come back to SD after the horrible shooting that went down back in August 2008. But we knew it was not our crowd that caused the shooting. Urban Underground promotes peace and unity and is in no way gang affiliated. We have been doing shows every Friday in L.A. for three years and never had a fight or shooting. Now we’re much more careful about the artists we are booking in SD. We make sure to screen new artists to make sure they are not gang affiliated.
“We are very excited to be back in town; however, we are facing problems with the new venue. They canceled our March 19 show with Large Professor because our first show with C Rayz Walz on January 29 did not result in high bar sales. The in-house promoter said the management at 710 Beach Club is reluctant to book hip-hop because the crowd doesn’t drink! They may give us more shows, depending on how February 19 goes.
“Our hope is that everyone will come out to support the show on February 19 with Lil Dap so that we may continue doing at least a monthly — if not another weekly — in San Diego.”