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The popular duo will share the stage at April's annual Penn Relays concert, which will be held at the Class of 1923 ice Rink this year. The Class of 1923 Ice Rink will be pounding when twosome Method Man and Redman join opening acts The Outsidaz and Ram Squad for the annual Penn Relays concert this April, in what organizers are billing as one of the year's most dynamic hip hop events. "The duo was our first choice," said Shamika Lee, the co-director of the Social Planning and Events Committee To Represent Undergraduate Minorities, after receiving signed contracts from the performers. The College sophomore added that SPEC-TRUM selected performers that were popular in both Philadelphia and the hip hop industry. Last spring, SPEC-TRUM brought groups 112 and Mobb Deep to the concert for Penn Relays, an international track and field tournament that attracts tens of thousands of people to the University each year. Past years have seen heavyweights Busta Rhymes and the Fugees. Capping the University's second annual hip hop week and opening the Penn Relays weekend, the concert will for the first time take place in the ice rink, a venue larger than last year's The Armory, which Lee said no longer holds concerts. Lee said SPEC-TRUM tried for a "different flavor" and a "different feel" with this year's acts, hoping to appeal to more than just the hip hop fans in Penn's student body and attract greater diversity. Method Man started out as a member of the world renowned Wu-Tang Clan in 1993. After attaining stardom with the group, he released two solo albums --ETical in 1994 and Tical 200: Judgement Day in 1998 -- both of which went platinum. New Jersey native Redman gained popularity with the release of his 1992 album, Whut -- The Album, and has released several albums since. Method Man and Redman, with Def Jam Records, released their platinum album BlackOut in late September. And the pair -- who first collaborated on their 1996 single "How High" -- solidified after appearing on the highly publicized Hard Knock Life Tour with fellow Def Jam artists DMX and Jay-Z. Also from New Jersey, The Outsidaz have been working the rap scene since 1990. Their current album Night Life features artists such as Eminem and Rah Digga. And Philadelphia native rap trio Ram Squad has two popular singles out right now -- "How We Do" and "I See Nothing." Yesterday, organizers said they hope the lineup's MTV exposure will draw in a larger student crowd. "It will be accessible to more students," said SPEC Chairman Jon Herrmann, a Wharton senior. And Lee said SPEC-TRUM will focus marketing on campus more this year by selling tickets on Locust Walk for a month. Tickets for the concert go on sale starting March 20, the first day of classes following Spring Break.

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