Not so NEW College: The Old Bookstore recording space

The Band Room and Recording Studio, a relatively under-utilized room, is tucked behind double doors in the mail room. It’s a space most students rarely enter, and its companions in the small hallway – the EQTA room and the NCSA storage room – offer a backdrop confirming that the room is part of a collection irrelevant to most students.

But before it was the band room, it was the Old Bookstore.

Sometime in the mid 1980s (NCSA archives regarding this space are scarce, and the few that exist are virtually completely undated), NCSA officials noticed an increasing presence of musical acts on campus with no designated place to go for practice. With limited student spaces available, the NCSA had to weigh the values of the existing spaces. The Old Bookstore was deemed least priority, and the room was temporarily designated as a shared space between bands and the bookstore.

“Due to the happy preponderance of emerging bands … we have decided that a meeting will be in order,” a hand-written flyer states, signed by “Ezra in box 173, Ben at box 272 or either of us.” “Things to be discussed will be the … scheduled times for band room, general maintenance of the old bookstore, and anything else people care to discuss.”

“The meeting will be held at the old bookstore,” the flyer announced.  

Following the decision to temporarily convert the book store, a user agreement was drafted, dictating among a number of things that the room would now remain locked when unattended, with keys available either from student government or the campus police. “The old bookstore will be temporarily dedicated to music practice and performance,” the user agreement read. “This assignment of space will remain in effect until such time as the building is required for more critical needs.”

A more critical need has yet to be identified. In the meantime, the band room remains a feature available to students. The current band room TA is Kamron Scruggs, available at


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