The Wilson Beacon

Wilson rapper to headline benefit concert at Wilson

Meredith Ellison

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Wilson senior Sam Pain will perform in the Wilson atrium alongside at least 10 other DC artists at the “Stop the Violence” edition of the “Living the Life” concert. Pain began rapping at age 10 and released his first single at 14.

After reading the article about Pain in The Beacon magazine last November, Pain’s manager suggested that he hold a benefit concert at Wilson. Originally, the proceeds from the concert were going to go to Wilson, but when Pain sat down with Principal Kimberly Martin to discuss the concert, she suggested that he give the proceeds to Jamahri Sydnor’s family. Jamahri, a recent Wilson graduate, died tragically in August 2017 when she was hit by a stray bullet.

“[Principal Martin] knew Jamahri and I were good friends and she was like, ‘I feel it would be a better idea if you gave it to the family,’” Pain said. He and Jamahri were neighbors and used to take the metro to school together. Because Pain frequently got in trouble on the metro, Jamahri began giving him rides to school. “She was always willing to help,” he said.

Pain’s goal for his “Living The Life” concert is to sell out the atrium by getting every Wilson student to come. “The more money we can get and I can give to the family,  [the more] I’ll feel like I’ve done my part when it comes to representing for Jamahri,” he said. Pain emphasized that in addition to the usual appeal of a concert, students should buy a ticket to his concert because he is a classmate and the proceeds go to a good cause.

Pain realizes that the concert can benefit him as well by helping him gain exposure. Atlantic Records, the label of Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran, and Cardi B, is coming to the concert to see him. “They want to see how many people I can bring to a show,” Pain said.

Young Jose and Romilli will be sharing the stage with Pain. He is also working on getting Chelly the MC to come.

Initially, the concert was going to be just for Wilson students, but Pain and his team decided to open it up to the public, requiring them to postpone the concert from its original January date. The concert will be in April but a date has not yet been finalized. Tickets will be sold for $10. •

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Wilson rapper to headline benefit concert at Wilson