The Renegade Fight Song

Tim Heasley

Tim Heasley

Hard to believe that Renegade Athletics is already here.  Yesterday I watched our Women’s Soccer team play at the Memorial Stadium (and as I understand from Francis Mayer, the first time in 20 years) and win 3-0 against COS.  And on saturday, September 5th, we will start the Renegade Football season at 6:00 p.m. against Riverside.  Prior to the football game, we will host a welcome reception for the new faculty at 4:30, after which the entire cohort will walk over to the game.

This is the perfect time to (re)introduce the BC Fight Song. BC Drumline and Concert Band Director Tim Heasley recently found the audio file in the choral archives.

This recording was done in 1963-64. The words are from the 1954-1955 Reneguide (the first student handbook that was produced).

But the fight song came even before that.

The fanfare from Quo Vadis, which goes directly into the the Renegade Fight Song, was arranged by Calvin Mueller. Cal Mueller was the BC Band Director from 1947-1967. It is thought that, for the fight song, Calvin used the tune from the 1944 film Meet Me In St. Louis, and the Quo Vadis movie from 1951, making the arrangement sometime between 1951 and 1953.

Jerry Ludeke

Jerry Ludeke

Who wrote the lyrics? Possibly Cal or a student – nothing is found on that in the Renegade Rips of the time.

The Quo Vadis/Fight Song quickly became a tradition at Bakersfield College games. In the early 1960s, Jerry Ludeke remembers it was always played when the team took the field, and after every touchdown.

Here is an email from Jerry about the Fight Song:

The red vinyl 33 1/3 record that was passed out on opening day is over 50 years old.  In 1963 they were sold for $3 each by the choir members to raise money for their 1965 trip to Europe which netted them the coveted Eisteddfod trophy in Ireland.  The picture on the back shows those whose performances were included on the record:  Ed Simonsen was the President whose message was included,  Ray Newman was the football coach who gave his pep talk,  Ken Fahsbender was the director of the award winning BC band which plays the Quo Vadis fanfare as well as the BC Fight Song and Alma Mater, and Joe Huszti led the choir in the fight song and other selections.  When you currently hear a recording of the choir singing the fight song, it is from this record.

In 2013, our centennial year, Ken Fahsbender cut a disc of his 1963-65 bands that played at the Seattle World’s Fair and won the grand prize at the Junior Rose Bowl Band Competition.  It includes the trumpet fan fares, the Fight Song, and the Alma Mater recorded in Memorial Stadium with the roar of the sixties crowd, plus other popular band favorites of the time.  (A disc can be ordered from the Archives for $10.)

Historical note: In the original words there were 5 “fights” in the last line.  When the choir sings it on the record, it has become 4 “fights”.  The third and fourth “fight” slur together as one.

Thank you to Nicky Damania, Director of Student Life, for providing copies of the lyrics and a keepsake record of the fight song to our faculty & staff at Opening Day!


Nicky Damania

Nicky Damania

We will fight fight fight when we’re winning

We will fight fight fight when we lose

Ere play ere goes ere the whistle blows.

We will fight where ere we choose.

We will fight fight fight in the morning,

We will fight fight fight in the night.

We are bound to win today, as we battle in the fray.

We will fight fight fight fight fight.

Listen for yourself!

BC Sounds record

BC Sounds record

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4 thoughts on “The Renegade Fight Song

  1. Judy Caras September 3, 2017 at 3:09 pm Reply

    Let’s pass those words out so we can learn them again. Also reinstate the singing of the Alma Mater with the football team present.
    I went to the game, 9/2, for the first time in many, many years. All that day I kept humming the Alma Mater and was so disappointed it was not done! I plan to attend all home games this year and hope at least homecoming will have the Alma Mater sung!!!! Our family bleeds Renegade Red.

    Judy Caras

  2. Matt Munoz August 2, 2018 at 3:04 pm Reply

    Looking forward to debuting the new recordings of the BC Fight Song in time for the 2018-2019 football season! Go Gades! Oi!

  3. chuck aoki March 10, 2020 at 1:28 pm Reply

    i played in the BC marching band 1964 65 and 66, yes three years! we marched in the 1966 rose parade that last year.
    i have the same small album and red record that you show.
    only problem is that the sounds from stadium plays the usc fight song (i am a UCLA alum)!

    thank you for your post.

  4. […] In my first blog in September 2015, I shared the news that BC Drumline and Concert Band Director Tim Heasley had recently found the audio file to the BC Fight Song.  […]

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