Asher Roth at Lolla: Your Guide to College Partying

asher-roth-main.jpg
Asher Roth / Erik Voake
WRITTEN BY
William Goodman

Asher Roth isn't as much a rapper as he is a hype man for a post-football game rager on the Greek Row of any State College -- and he really loves women's breasts.

"BBBBBOOOOOOOBBBBBBBIIIIIIIIIIEEEEESSSS!!!!!!!!"

It's the 12th time the 23-year-old scruffy white dude from suburban Morrisville, PA, has screamed this word during his 5 P.M. slot at Lollapalooza's Citi Stage, which is more packed now than it's been all day. He's crowd surfing, letting the legions of young fans tug at his flip-flops, basketball shorts, and grey T-shirt. One girl in a tank top and Wayfarers is sloshing down a 24-oz Bud Lime and slapping his ass over and over, as her friend -- perched on a boyfriend's shoulders -- roots her on. Roth, stalled above the crowd, is dropping rhymes about the joys of higher education -- girls, one-dollar slices of pizza, weed, beer bongs, etc. -- on "I Love College," a cut-up of Weezer's "Say It Ain't So."

Mom and Dad, it's your worst nightmare.

The song climbed the charts this spring, selling more than one million downloads stateside in its first 12 weeks. Now it's the unofficial anthem for Playboy's Top 10 Party Schools. The tune's video, filmed in a frat house, has millions of views on YouTube. It's nominated for a pair of VMAs.

Roth's party-all-the-time shtick is successful and pretty damn silly -- and live it's utterly ridiculous.

During the 45-minute set, a leafy corner of Grant Park transforms into a drizzly day at MTV's Spring Break: a guy dances onstage in a marijuana leaf costume as Roth chases him; two bros run around in George Bush and Richard Nixon masks and red, white, and blue top hats; then Roth invites all the "independent women" onstage for a danceathon, kicking it off by asking them to sing along: "I love felatiooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!

It'd be tough to argue that there's any real artistic value to Roth's music. For half of the show he instructs his DJ to play samples from his album, Asleep in the Bread Aisle, including the Weather Girls' "It's Raining Men," and insists the crowd either drink, smoke, show their tits, or put their hands in the air. He even talks with the crowd about their love of -- who else? -- Asher Roth.

Actual bits of rapping are few and far between.

"Hey y'all, it's not about making money anymore, it's about making good music," Roth says, jumping down in front once again to let the same girl continue her spanking. "So -- you know what? -- fuck ringtones!"

But that line doesn't seem to stick. So he tries: "Make some noise for boobies one more time! Come on, show your support for breast cancer. Don't do it for me -- do it for the ta-tas!!!

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