Best Use of School Property

Attention all playas, pimps, hustlers, ballers and macks: Texas Southern University will host its first-ever Old School Celebrity Weekend, where locals and celebrities will come together and get their roll on.

The three-day shindig will kick off Thursday night at TSU's Hannah Hall with Luther Campbell, Luke Skyywalker himself, presenting a special screening of his critically acclaimed (well, if you count drunk brothas on spring break as "critics") motion picture, Luke's Freak Fest 2000, a surprisingly tame (by Luke's standards) comedy that BET called "more Ebony Man swimsuit issue than Black Tail magazine." The after-party will be at Max's 2001 [2630 Augusta Drive, (713)781-8838], hosted by Campbell and weekend organizer John Tucker.

Friday night will feature an "Old School Concert," with performances by Dana Dane, Black Sheep and others. Saturday will have celebs taking it to the hole with a charity basketball game, featuring rappers Mystikal and Willie D as well as Dondre Whitfield (TV's Between Brothers), Antwon Tanner (who appeared in the 1996 film Sunset Park), Khalil Kain (Love Jones, Juice) and other black actors whom most white folks have never heard of. The weekend will culminate with a "Comedy Show" and an "'80s Old School After Party" at Club Ambiance [5851 Southwest Freeway, (713)661-6829], hosted by BET funnyman Joe Clair.

The weekend is the work of onetime Houstonian Tucker. The Cincinnati-born Tucker, 29, graduated from the historical black college in 1997 before going on to become the producer of BET's popular video show Rap City. Proceeds from all events will go to the J.D. Tucker Foundation, an organization that will fund two or three scholarships for students in the university's communications department, Tucker's old stomping ground. It is simply Tucker's way of giving back to the institute of higher learning that made him the big man on campus he will be this weekend. "A lot of times, we award the A students and whatnot, and rightfully so," says Tucker. "But that doesn't mean that the students that weren't A students don't deserve, you know, help. And that's what I wanna do."

Tucker admits he's nervous as the neophyte promoter of this three-day throwdown. But as long as he sees people having a good time -- and not erupting into any ass-whuppings, à la The Source Hip-Hop Music Awards -- he wouldn't mind turning this into an annual thing. "Anybody that knows me knows I'm always smiling," says Tucker. "I want them to walk away with a big smile 'cause I just want people to be happy, simple as that. Forget about the bills, the ills and some troubles they're having, and just have a good time."

You know what they say: Playas do love to play.

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Craig D. Lindsey
Contact: Craig D. Lindsey