I Wanna Rock: Why Doesn't Tennessee Tech Get Rock Music?
Tech students consistently criticized the selection of big name entertainment on campus. Big name entertainment began around the early 1960s and continues in 2020. In the October 21, 1977 Oracle, an author joked that the homecoming group for 1977 had a big name. According to Dean Gitchegoomie, “’Johann Kirchesteinerstrogenfinkelwagenlangenahmenhabt and his Good Time Boys’ was a very big band name.” In the 1984 Eagle, students praised MTV for providing a much needed resource for rock music since the University did not provide any.
Historically, students asked for more ROCK! The University Programming Committee (UPC) blamed the lack of big name entertainment, notably rock, on poor attendance to shows, a lack of student interest, and the cost for many popular acts as the reasons for not scheduling different concerts. In 1981, Jefferson Starship had only 3,500 attendees and there were other unsuccessful concerts and many that lost the University money. Concert attendance at Tech was a continuing problem which made it difficult to get acts. There was also diversified music interest on campus. Despite conducting polls on student interests, many shows were still poorly attended.