Salad days at the Che

(A new perspective on our old stomping grounds. Any other readers from the Che collective want to chime in?)

So, I am flipping through the Reader, and I see the short article about your site and I go check it out because back in the day I belonged to several lefty campus organizations that put on benefit concerts at the Che.

I recognized the name of your band, Noise 292, because of all the shows we did. I had one flyer saved from back in the day, and it has your band’s name on it along with The Front and The Odds. It was for a Feb. 24, 1984, concert [to benefit draft resister Michael Marsh] sponsored by the UCSD Committee Against Registration and the Draft which was a part of the Progressive Student Organization at the Che.

If you want, I can send you a photo of it and you can add it to your list of flyers. It’s a total homemade deal. (I did the flyers in most cases.) One of the bigger selling points was kegs of beer. That was back before the alcohol inquisition ran booze off campus.

Then and now: The Che Cafe!

I am not positive, but I think the concert you guys played a bunch of punk rockers showed up, and one of them was so smashed be began to eat some of the anti-draft lit we had out. I recall Marsh, this skinny peacenik kid, trying to rationalize with this gigantic drunk [punk]. I thought he was going to eat Michael next. Good times!

Anyway, it’s cool what you are doing, brings back a lot of memories from a really fun time in my life. Wish I would have kept more mementos from that time … but whoever thought one day I would be pushing 50?

Best regards,

— Dan Epperly

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One Response to “Salad days at the Che”

  1. Mmrothenberg Says:

    Those days did inspire some odd culture clashes.

    I remember going to see Joan Baez at Golden Hall ca. 1984 to support some young conscientious objector whose name I forget. (Joan Baez was never the acme of anything for me, but a good set of pipes, I felt sympathetic to the cause, and I think I was on a date.)

    That day, a newspaper had interviewed the kid whose defense this was to fund … He was very grateful for her help, but (pressed by the reporter) he acknowledged that the Clash was actually his favorite band.

    Baez came out and said that in honor of the kid’s musical preferences, she’d decided to learn one of the Clash’s melodies. “Cool!” I thought. “‘Spanish Bombs’ done by Joan Baez could be pretty neat. Beautiful song, beautiful voice, totally in tune with the event.”

    “… But then,” she continued, “I found out they don’t have any!” (rimshot.)

    The rest of the evening was punctuated by Joan Baez sputtering about pre-programmed, computerized music by bands like the Clash (who she seemed to be mixing up with Kraftwerk?) She got a lot of boos after a while, but she just kept it up.

    I’ve always hated Joan Baez since then. :-)

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