Student Concert Committee Celebrates 40 Years of Concerts

By Laura Clavio, Purdue Convocations Assistant Director and SCC advisor

The last four decades of popular entertainment have seen countless tastes and trends come, go… and sometimes come back again. Through it all, the Purdue Student Concert Committee (SCC) has been a driving force in bringing the best of the best to West Lafayette.

This season, the SCC—a student-organization branch of Purdue Convocations that helps select performances geared to the student body—proudly celebrates its 40th anniversary.

Ticket stub from Bruce Springteen at Purdue University, February 25, 1977

Purdue SCC has brought high caliber talent such Bruce Springsteen to West Lafayette

Ever since its beginning, the SCC has been a ground-breaker; it was the first-ever all-student committee to choose concerts for students at Purdue University. SCC’s first booked concert was Fleetwood Mac on Saturday, September 20, 1975, and the season’s other six SCC concerts read like a who’s-who of classic-rock luminaries: Jefferson Starship, David Crosby and Graham Nash, Jethro Tull, Joni Mitchell, Kansas, and Dan Fogelberg.

“I’ll never forget taking a really hard exam and scram- bling to get to Bruce Springsteen’s concert. Coming in backstage, watching from the side…the energy! It was amazing. Then there was a 1976 concert by a slightly under-the-weather Joni Mitchell. When it came time for an encore, a scruffy-looking guy came out, sat down, and started playing his guitar and harmonica. We wondered: ‘Who is this guy? Where’s Joni?’ Suddenly, it sounded familiar. It was her old friend Neil Young. Those are the types of live-music surprises I’m proud to have been a part of at Purdue.” Brian Robinson, BSIE ’79

Over the years, SCC has booked many genres—pop, rock, blues, country, comedy, hip-hop, rap, and EDM. Some of the most famous acts SCC has booked to perform at Elliott Hall of Music over the years include Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Pearl Jam, Lady Gaga, Neil Young, Elton John, Brad Paisley, John Mayer, Snoop Dogg, Ben Folds, Luke Bryan, Lupe Fiasco, and Avicii. Talented comedians have included George Carlin, Adam Sandler, Bob Saget, Jim Gaffigan, and Nick Offerman.

I still have very fond memories of my time with SCC, and people are always impressed by what an awesome opportunity that Purdue—and especially SCC—gave me!

Zachary Christian, SCC 2005-2007,

BS, Civil Engineering

SCC with comedian Nick Offerman in 2014

SCC with comedian Nick Offerman in 2014

Gaining knowledge that’s equal to an internship in the music industry, SCC members learn the essentials of all it takes to book talent, present a performance, and navigate the marketing and financial aspects of the business. They take away real-life experiences working backstage as part of the day-of-show crew and enhance their analysis skills by reviewing the results of their performance choices.

Through the SCC, Purdue has enjoyed 40 years of unforgettable music, enduring memories, and unrivaled opportunities for Purdue students to gain experience in all it takes to bring a concert to the stage. In honor of the SCC’s anniversary, here’s to 40 more great years!

SCC Callout for Fall 2015

Fowler Hall (in Stewart Center)

September 2, 2015 / 7pm