“I hope to be annoyingly in your face all year,” said Hoodie Allen, a young Long Island-based hip hop newcomer, in a recent interview with the Daily.

Hoodie Allen

Friday at 9 p.m.
Club Vintage
Tickets from $15

Big things are happening in 2011 for Hoodie Allen (not to be confused or associated with the silver screen legend Woody), who started off with his highly acclaimed mixtape debut, The Pep Rally, in late 2010. The new year is a busy one for Hoodie, with a new music video and album planned to come out, in addition to his first tour — which includes a stop tonight at Ann Arbor’s Vintage.

“There’s no room for chilling out,” Allen said. “I try to keep myself very busy. Every day I’m writing, every day I’m mixing new stuff; every day I’m meeting new people, collaborating and producing new videos and music. 2011 should be very fun and very busy.”

Allen has been producing and writing his own music for the past 10 years. He cites his biggest influences as BlackStar, OutKast, De La Soul and other ’90s hip-hop acts, which he incorporates into his own style.

“The music that I like is what inspires me,” Allen said. “I may directly put it into my music, whether by sampling or referencing it. So a lot of the influences, whether it be Marina and the Diamonds or Yeasayer, these are just the artists that I enjoy when I’m kicking back and listening to the music. So I’ve incorporated them into what I do.”

Sampling is a big part of Pep Rally, and Allen plans to test the tracks out on tour. Most of his stops are at college campuses, like the University, but he’s also playing in major cities like Los Angeles.

Hoodie will be joined onstage tonight by ZAK!, a New York hip-hop artist, and Ann Arbor-based indie-pop group The Hop. Hoodie and the other acts were brought to Ann Arbor by Invite Only Management, a University student–founded management and production company.

“I’m just excited to meet all of the people who helped make the concert happen, to meet fans, to make new fans by performing,” Allen said.

Ann Arbor is the perfect stop for Allen because most of his audience is in the college-aged bracket.

“I’ve been getting a lot of great reactions from the college scene,” he said. “And obviously the attention is on blogs, which college kids read, so it’s a natural fit.”

Though Hoodie is not signed on to a major record label and is currently managed by a smaller team, he is grateful for the power of the internet and feels that blogs and social media are an essential part of the promotion of his music.

Hoodie is at the cusp of his career and is already being recognized by a growing group of fans all around — his music fills college dorm halls and teens’ cars. But he is still humbled by the fact that people even know his lyrics.

“I think every time I see someone in the crowd just mouthing back word-to-word every single song, to me (it) is always going to make me feel like it’s a special experience,” Allen said.

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