Moon Tunes is learning experience for SCPC

Photo by Jed Paz

It is a generally well-known fact that to take Tech Walkway through campus midday during the week is to invite every group, from the usual organizations such as the Student Alumni Association to those that dwell at the furthest reaches of reality, to lobby for new members or various upcoming events.

Many upperclassmen even make a point of avoiding these encounters between the Student Center and Clough, especially the first few weeks of each semester.

If one had taken Tech Walkway last Wednesday, for example, one would have been greeted by several tables set up for advocating Voter Registration, advertising for the Tour of Asia, or handing out Moon Pies.

This last table, upon closer inspection, was run by the Student Center Programs Council (SCPC) which was advertising for its annual Night at Six Flags as well as for a new endeavor dubbed Moon Tunes at the Campanile.

Sticking to the lunar theme, SCPC saw fit to hold this free concert at dusk and share Moon Pies both as advertisement beforehand as well as being a fine accompaniment to the music.

Sadly, the silvery namesake itself did not see fit to make an appearance above the gathering. Perhaps another time it will deign to grace Moon Tunes with its presence, as SCPC has expressed interest in making this mini concert a monthly event.

For a first attempt, the Moon Tunes of Sept 18 went well, though it was unmistakably a learning experience for the planners.

It did not help that Tour of Asia was taking place not far off on Tech Walkway, playing their own music. When Round Table, one of the featured bands, started to test the sound system by playing music from their laptop, the two soundtracks clashed.

While Tour of Asia was playing upbeat songs typical of gatherings or found on mainstream radio, Round Table opted for the rap and darker themed music of Rick Ross, Kanye West, and others.

While testing the sound system, one of Round Table’s more enthusiastic members took a microphone and told passersby to return around eight for the show (which SCPC said started at 7:30).

This last minute advertisement served a dual purpose, as he found the limits within which he needed to stand in order to avoid getting feedback.

All of this was, of course, just setup. By 7:30, Tour of Asia was winding down and by the time Moon Tunes started in earnest at quarter till eight (midway between the two advertised start times), it was no longer competing with other musical endeavors.

The first band to play was the one that SCPC had advertised, The Quarks, an original Georgia Tech folk band. The four members each took turns singing, and some switched instruments with ease.

The band was quite talented, and their songs made an impression on the audience, who were politely silent while they played. The lyrics of the stellar songs, however, ranged from merely sad to thoroughly depressing, so paying close attention was not exactly a fun experience, though it was enjoyable.

Round Table was the polar opposite of The Quarks. The three band members jumped around enthusiastically and perhaps intimidatingly judging by how many people left when they started rapping.

Granted, not many rappers would be able to successfully entertain people who mere minutes ago were enjoying decidedly calmer folk music.

Since there are relatively few fans of both folk and rap, the people who would have enjoyed Round Table most likely left when they were unimpressed by The Quarks while anyone who stayed for the folk performance most likely did not also enjoy rap. Round Table was doomed by the lineup, regardless of whether or not they had talent.

Never one to miss opportunities to spread the word about upcoming events, SCPC had set up a table near the musicians, attempting to entice people with Moon Pies.

Stapled to the treat were fliers for their Night at Six Flags, Tips for Gentlemen, and various other events. GT’s Musician’s Network was also handing out stickers announcing their meetings.

Fortunately, the many ads were not particularly intrusive, and did not detract from the musicians. SCPC should be careful in the future to keep their events from simply becoming advertisements for future events.

Sadly, one of the draws to Moon Tunes was that SCPC was planning to announce this year’s Homecoming artist, but was unable to do so.

This letdown did nothing to lighten the event and more it may have disappointed students who attended in large part to discover who the artist would be. SCPC has since proclaimed it to be Hoodie Allen.

By this first incarnation, it is quite apparent that Moon Tunes has potential, though it would benefit from a wider variety of bands and performers.

If it switches which styles of music are represented every month, there is little reason for it to not be a rather eclectic success,. With a few change, Moon Tunes could surely have something to please everyone. But it will likely not ever please everyone at the same time.