Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Nature of The Band Community of N.O.

For me, Although I love to hear the bands, I've always enjoyed it from a pageantry standpoint. it's why I take pictures & record the bands. Not to sell it, but to show people how our Marching Units  function here.

The downside is catching them looking or sounding bad. Posting bad clips online usually upsets members, alumni & directors. My only defense is that The Camera only records what it see's and hears.  I don't like putting bad footage online, but sometimes these band members need to see the publics opinions. no mater how bias or blunt the comments may be. That kind of Critiquing can always be used as constant reminders that you don’t want to disappoint the fans

I always tell folks this. No Matter how great your band is. History gets thrown out the window in the heat of battle. You can't use your bands past accolades to cover up a recent bad performance. Plain and simple If you're not good today your band will get Booed.

There will always be someone Observing & waiting for your band to mess up.  There are also those who will talk greatly about the bands. Yet The bands with the biggest impact of the night Can easily become the talk of the town for years.

Determining the best band is always tricky because it depends on how the band community accepts the band they're viewing and hearing. Also, The competitive nature of our own bands as rival is always good. but first Our bands must outdo Themselves as individual bands before they can be taken seriously to amongst Masses.

With that said..  It is very embarrassing when bands come from other cities & states outdo our own during the parade season.  Uniformity, Discipline as well as sound Quality and projection are Common Factors constantly being looked at by Knowledgeable Observers. Yet there is a misguided league of band fans who only want to hear a loud volume and could care less about quality sound.

The sad part is, Our bands are accustomed to the conditions of parade season. You would think each band would at least try to be on point at all times.  especially now days because they Know that the band world is watching and hoping our bands fail.

Oddly enough, Folks in other states assume that we do marching band year around, as if our bands don't have Concert or Jazz ensembles. (Many of them don't of course) but it's hard to defend it when those ensembles are not Visible... 

This is why I was proud that during Spring 2010. McDonogh #35 received all 1's in Texas Southern University's Concert band festival. I'm Proud because They represented New Orleans by doing better than bands from all over East Texas and Louisiana. To Me. It's like proving the critics wrong.

I personally think It would be great if our local college music programs would get involved. like hosting events such as concert & marching clinics.  Not for Showcasing nor competition. but simply for educational purposes like seeing beyond the stereotypical aspects of corps & show style bands.

example: Take two great bands like  St. Amant & St Augustine HS bands. Give them the music to "Hands Across The Sea March"  it is Expected that both bands sound EXACTLY THE SAME playing that tune. if not. we know that something is wrong from an educational standpoint and could be fixed if addressed properly.

The Concepts of Corps & Show Style bands may be different but the Scientific Method all is the same. It’s all about Teaching, Learning an Executing Standards in Musicianship, Showmanship & Precision.

I appreciate it all. being in band made me who I am today. It’s why I am an advocate of what it is that our bands do. I want to make’em all understand!

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