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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 1:44 pm 
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CrystalMage wrote:
My view of LBJCB in the Santa Claus Lane parade is that they not only had a great presence with their uniforms, big sound, good sound, and large numbers, but also, they were consistent in generating that presence. So, they were reliable. If you needed a impressive, All-American band, LBJCB was as good of a bet as buying stock in IBM usually would be!


Yep...apparently and they did the parade for over 40 years straight,heh. :wink:

CrystalMage wrote:
And I do know the parade officials for the Hollywood Santa Claus Lane parade had certain standards, such as being able to march at least a certain number of members. And I also figure, but I’m guessing, that LBJCB at some point in the past, established itself with the parade.


Yeah probably. Dunno what the details of that would be tho. I seem to recall a couple times Winds being last band but I could be mixed up on that with maybe another parade or something.

CrystalMage wrote:
So, it makes sense to me why they would be invited to many events. You really couldn’t go wrong with having them at an event.


And Marker was a good salesman, haha.

CrystalMage wrote:
I remember that the Cabbies marched in that parade in 1979. And the reason we qualified was due to a membership drive that was geared, at least in my view, to have enough marching members to qualify. Even then, we marched an Odd-Even formation to give the appearance of a larger band.


I was there in/out too, altho not for the Hollywood parade,etc. When Monte was there Cabbies were the largest I'd ever seen. I think Monte and Dave S. did a GREAT job with Cabbies when they were there. :wink: Also, with the decline in membership through the 80's even LBJCB started marching that odd/even rank deal.

CrystalMage wrote:
In the Cabbies case, some of us would rather have forgone that parade and put higher standards on the new members skill on their instrument. We were getting cleaner during that past summer and were enthusiastic about that. But, in time, things worked themselves out – flaky folks didn’t like the work involved so they left, and those who enjoyed being there, improved, and it was fun having a lot of members who enjoyed the whole thing.


So true with most groups. Still....I'd have done the parade cuz it's great PR,eh? :wink:

CrystalMage wrote:
Yeah, Marvin Marker definitely had a flare for pageantry and he created the band to express that for sure. He found a niche and really made it work.


I think so too, altho he really didn't form the band to be like it was, hence the name. It was supposed to be a Sousa like concert band mainly but in 1952 the kids wanted to try a parade, donned hawaiian shirts and marched taking their first sweepstakes. Can't remember which parade it was as the history went.

The thing about the niche which I find neat was/is they don't HAVE to be "corps style". While the rest of bandom was going with rudimental drums with every kind of percussion instrument one could think of to strap on, and general "corps style" marching, LBJCB kept it simple and geared themselves more for parades for competition. I think that was smart on Marker's part because as we all know how involved and time consuming it is to put a competitive field show together. "Concert Band" DID a few field shows here and there for exhibition tho, even a corps show, but was way simple for competition standards,etc.


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:15 pm 
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CrystalMage wrote:
I got a hint of what it might have been like with LBJCB by working with Monte Gmur. There were some times that we did some seemingly LBJCB-esque things. But Monte had a flare in his own right for sure. He brought a refreshing, out-of-the-box and experimental attitude to field shows and parades, in my view. It’s like he tapped into experiences he had with LBJCB and also from watching Drum and Bugle corps, and entwined them in ways that would work with the Los Caballeros theme and demeanor of its members.


Totally......a great arranger and we had a blast with Monte on trips. He was being ridden piggy back one year in downtown Vegas, heh. Monte was total fun to work with and new his music well.

CrystalMage wrote:
So, part of what was refreshing was his open-mindedness to try new things or listen to ideas. I and a number of others came to the Los Caballeros, initially, just to sit-in with a different youth band. We were pretty much all of the section leaders from TAYB and had just quit after a growing disagreement about the direction that band should take came to a head. Initially, I said I was going to join the Royal Cavaliers, but first decided to go the a Cabbie practice, and the others, who left with me, decided to go too.


Heh....I had said one time while in LBJCB that I was going to join Royal Cavaliers too, if not only to learn field show techniques and such. Boy...I was called in front of Marvin on that one, hahaha. I started tiring of some of the musical direction of the band playing goofy tunes like "Beer Barrell Polka" and such and of course at the time my head was being turned a little by drumcorps and the military style it presented,heh. I eventually ended up in the AK.

CrystalMage wrote:
When we arrived at that practice, they were already in session. So, we waited at the door. But Monte stopped the song and asked us what did we want. And I asked if we could sit in. He said “yes”, and so we settled in. I did like playing their songs and was impressed with one, where Andrew Carney took a solo. It was a well arranged song and a good solo. So, it was obvious they were seeking good arrangements geared for the band.


Wow...I didn't know Andrew was in the Cabbies??? hahaha. Great guy and fellow Valle student.

CrystalMage wrote:
After the rehearsal, Monte called all of us ex-TAYBers aside. He told us how he was flooded with calls from various TAYB Board members. Some said we were trouble makers, others said we were the cream of the crop – both extremes! But he said he figured the ones who said good things about us were right and the others, bitter. So, he invited us to join with enthusiasm and asked us what ideas we might have, and such. So, we joined. And I must say I’m glad I finished out my Youth Band days, aged-out with the Cabbies.


Cool. Yeah..I've learned people go where they wanna go and where they feel they'll get the most out of the program. Certain people tho will still rant about "they stole our membership" tho. I've had to defend against some of these people even today as adults.

CrystalMage wrote:
And to be fair, with the exception of certain events that occurred the last year or 6 months I was in TAYB out of 9 years, it was an outrageously great experience. And the difficult part of leaving TAYB was the other kids in the band, many of whom I grew up with per se – the average tenure in TAYB was 5 years, so most members were around for years. And pound-for-pound, TAYB had very skilled players.

But, Monte offered some new, exciting ideas and an enthusiasm for experimenting, so that was a lot of fun.


Yep.....it's all about the program, it's organization and the leadership I think which holds the membership,eh? It's a crying shame today that the kids are all used up with their competitive high school field show programs that they have no time nor energy to do a youth band once a week,etc.


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:00 pm 
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Quote:
Wow...I didn't know Andrew was in the Cabbies??? hahaha. Great guy and fellow Valle student.


Yes, he was in the Cabbie’s when I joined, but quit a few months later – late summer, early fall 1979. Andrew is actually playing a solo in the one video clip on my website, the clip from the 1979 Cabbie field show, during La Bamba, the 3rd song I think.

Ah, so you took lessons from Bob Valle as well? My brother did and I did as well, believe it or not – I was taking improve lessons with my saxophone, as he was the only one I had met back then that said improvising could be taught… I first met Bob when I was working with my grandfather at Morey’s Music Store in Long Beach – summer job in the repair shop. But when I took lessons, it was at Bob’s garage/studio at his home.

By the way, I do have a picture of Bob Valle on my website, on the “Trumpet Stuff” page. It’s www.blackboxbuster.com I took it when I was taking a photography class

Quote:
Cool. Yeah..I've learned people go where they wanna go and where they feel they'll get the most out of the program. Certain people tho will still rant about "they stole our membership" tho. I've had to defend against some of these people even today as adults


That’s true. Some TAYB folks took it as a betrayal that they couldn’t get over. I even heard some mention of an old rivalry between TAYB and Cabbies, but as long as I was in TAYB I never felt or heard of such a thing. And as well, there were some Cabbie members who didn’t like us, calling us the Torrance People. But those folks quit in a short time. My heart just would not have be into it if I had stayed with TAYB, and I didn’t see why I needed to retire from youth bands at 18 years of age, going on 19.

Quote:
Heh....I had said one time while in LBJCB that I was going to join Royal Cavaliers too, if not only to learn field show techniques and such. Boy...I was called in front of Marvin on that one, hahaha. I started tiring of some of the musical direction of the band playing goofy tunes like "Beer Barrell Polka" and such and of course at the time my head was being turned a little by drumcorps and the military style it presented,heh. I eventually ended up in the AK.


Yeah, Beer Barrel Polka gets almost as bad as “Missippi Mud” – spelling! LOL

You were in AK? What year. My brother went on tour with them in 1978. And then after that, he worked to help TAYB to improve their field show style – TAYB’s 1978 show was basically like a college or high school halftime show than a fieldshow. Gary Kean arranged Birdland and Chumpchange, and Dave Weinberg, with whom my brother met in AK, wrote the drill. Seemed like a neat direction we were going, but there was undermining and in-fighting going on from our director and some board members, to the point were Dave left, out of self-respect, and I quit that same night. These songs and Dave being Drum Major for TAYB is on my sight as well, the TAYB 1979 Shrine show.. Probably my last performance with them. So, there was a big AK influence happening with TAYB. In fact, James Whobry had been working with the drum section since 1977, helping us to hone the rudimental drum style - we switched back in 1975/1976, which was sort of a battle back then!

_________________
Michael Lopez
Torrance Area Youth Band 1971-1979
Los Caballeros Youth Band 1979 - 1981


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:39 pm 
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CrystalMage wrote:
Ah, so you took lessons from Bob Valle as well? My brother did and I did as well, believe it or not – I was taking improve lessons with my saxophone, as he was the only one I had met back then that said improvising could be taught… I first met Bob when I was working with my grandfather at Morey’s Music Store in Long Beach – summer job in the repair shop. But when I took lessons, it was at Bob’s garage/studio at his home.

By the way, I do have a picture of Bob Valle on my website, on the “Trumpet Stuff” page. It’s http://www.blackboxbuster.com I took it when I was taking a photography class


Ah....NOW I know who you are, heh. You're little Tony Lopez's brother!! hahaha.....cool beans! We just marched together again last August with the KAC at the Rose Bowl. I was one of the soloists in "Mambo",heh.

You sent me a file of that pic of Bob and it's hanging on the mirror in my studio. I will cherish it always. I was with Bob for 24 years before he died. I know that garage/studio well. I also have a ton of records and stuff from the estate. I now carry on his legacy in teaching private students working on their chops,etc.

Quote:
Cool. Yeah..I've learned people go where they wanna go and where they feel they'll get the most out of the program. Certain people tho will still rant about "they stole our membership" tho. I've had to defend against some of these people even today as adults


CrystalMage wrote:
That’s true. Some TAYB folks took it as a betrayal that they couldn’t get over. I even heard some mention of an old rivalry between TAYB and Cabbies, but as long as I was in TAYB I never felt or heard of such a thing. And as well, there were some Cabbie members who didn’t like us, calling us the Torrance People. But those folks quit in a short time. My heart just would not have be into it if I had stayed with TAYB, and I didn’t see why I needed to retire from youth bands at 18 years of age, going on 19.


True. I thought it strange too for Norwalk All City kids to "age out" at 18 when the competition rules take you thru 21.

Quote:
Heh....I had said one time while in LBJCB that I was going to join Royal Cavaliers too, if not only to learn field show techniques and such. Boy...I was called in front of Marvin on that one, hahaha. I started tiring of some of the musical direction of the band playing goofy tunes like "Beer Barrell Polka" and such and of course at the time my head was being turned a little by drumcorps and the military style it presented,heh. I eventually ended up in the AK.


CrystalMage wrote:
Yeah, Beer Barrel Polka gets almost as bad as “Missippi Mud” – spelling! LOL


And we were sitting down playing it and they wanted us to sway back and forth! hahaha.

CrystalMage wrote:
You were in AK? What year. My brother went on tour with them in 1978.


Yep....right next to him in the lead sop line. There's a funny story I witnessed in Whitewater with your brother. We were all in our horn arch and he was late getting there. He shows up with his lips all smothered with neosporin. Gary Kean stops the horns and says to Tony, "where the hell have YOU been". Tony with the neosporin all over his lips goes, "kissing a chickens ass?" hahahaha. Of course the whole horn line were rolling on the floor laughing including Kean,heh. Your brother I think has the record too of having the smallest AK uniform, LOL.

CrystalMage wrote:
And then after that, he worked to help TAYB to improve their field show style – TAYB’s 1978 show was basically like a college or high school halftime show than a fieldshow. Gary Kean arranged Birdland and Chumpchange, and Dave Weinberg, with whom my brother met in AK, wrote the drill. Seemed like a neat direction we were going, but there was undermining and in-fighting going on from our director and some board members, to the point were Dave left, out of self-respect, and I quit that same night. These songs and Dave being Drum Major for TAYB is on my sight as well, the TAYB 1979 Shrine show.. Probably my last performance with them. So, there was a big AK influence happening with TAYB. In fact, James Whobry had been working with the drum section since 1977, helping us to hone the rudimental drum style - we switched back in 1975/1976, which was sort of a battle back then!


Cool beans. There's going to be MORE Kingsmen influence shortly. There will be 3 corps with Jim Whobery at the head as executive director. :wink: :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 7:51 am 
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Quote:
Ah....NOW I know who you are, heh. You're little Tony Lopez's brother!! hahaha.....cool beans! We just marched together again last August with the KAC at the Rose Bowl. I was one of the soloists in "Mambo",heh.

You sent me a file of that pic of Bob and it's hanging on the mirror in my studio. I will cherish it always. I was with Bob for 24 years before he died. I know that garage/studio well. I also have a ton of records and stuff from the estate. I now carry on his legacy in teaching private students working on their chops,etc.


Ah ha! Your Phil! I didn’t realize I was talking to you. Yes, my girlfriend and I watched you’all perform live on the live webcast thing. I also bought the DVD!

I’m glad you like the photo of Bob. He was really enthusiastic to help me with my photo class project and helped come up with ideas of where and how to shoot it - I took that during one of my lessons.

Bob seemed to also have a good number of students in Youth Bands. Two who left TAYB with me also took lessons from him. As well, some folks who were still in TAYB did as well. One thing I really remember about him is that when I was leaving, just about to grab the doorknob, he’d always say, “Keep on pluggin”.

I also watched his band perform, and one time sat in with them. It was nice of him to invite me.

Quote:
CrystalMage wrote:
Yeah, Beer Barrel Polka gets almost as bad as “Missippi Mud” – spelling! LOL


And we were sitting down playing it and they wanted us to sway back and forth! hahaha.


Seems like some directors never considered how weird it looks when we were forced to do something we didn’t like. Doesn’t add anything if it looks labored.

However, speaking of polkas and Youth Bands, when I was still in TAYB, we a few members would perform as a small group in the band’s behalf. We were TAYB’s Polka band and we played at the “Olde Town Mall” and every year, for the folks working on the floats for the Rose bowl Parade. My brother actually started that group and owned the music, and the TAYB staff let him run with it insofar as picking the musicians from our ranks – maximum of two on each instrument.

When we left TAYB and went to Cabbies, the polka band left as well, by default, as we were basically one and the same. We did do one performance on the Cabbies behalf when something came up suddenly and Monte was in a pinch. I give him a lot of kudos that he agreed to have us perform, never having heard us until the actual performance. But he was very happy.

But, other than that, we actually did our own performances off and on, with no Youth Band affiliation. Das Pommen Fritzes we called ourselves. I don’t know if we’d have ever done that if it hadn’t been for TAYB’s tradition to entertain the Rose float folks.

Quote:
CrystalMage wrote:
You were in AK? What year. My brother went on tour with them in 1978.


Yep....right next to him in the lead sop line. There's a funny story I witnessed in Whitewater with your brother. We were all in our horn arch and he was late getting there. He shows up with his lips all smothered with neosporin. Gary Kean stops the horns and says to Tony, "where the hell have YOU been". Tony with the neosporin all over his lips goes, "kissing a chickens ass?" hahahaha. Of course the whole horn line were rolling on the floor laughing including Kean,heh. Your brother I think has the record too of having the smallest AK uniform, LOL.


Ah, that sounds like Tony. Yeah? I did notice that it fit him well, so I guess that did have one the right size already or close!

Quote:
Cool beans. There's going to be MORE Kingsmen influence shortly. There will be 3 corps with Jim Whobery at the head as executive director.


Great! I need to get a hold of someone from KAC soon, because I do have 3 bugles I want to donate, assuming they want them – I was trying my hand at brass playing and got curious about how various G bugles felt, so bought some on ebay a good while back. Now they are just sitting around. I understand they might accept valve/trigger ones as some alumni are most comfortable with that type.

Interesting interplay between Drum and Bugle Corps and Youth Bands, though. Drum and Bugle corps were the innovators and some Youth Bands learned from that, while in turn, fed experienced musicians to Drum and Bugle Corps.

One hope I and some others had for TAYB was for it to be much more like a Drum and Bugle Corp in regard to how a corp approaches building a field show each year. Not in terms, however, in touring like a corp, so less intense during the summer, but still, the idea of having well arranged songs that are challenging and a challenging field show to match, so that our rehearsals were focused on cleaning. Parades would still have been a big part, but in comparison, easy to what we were focusing on. We were having weekly sectionals for brass, woodwinds and drums, but I was seeing that there wasn’t a consensus within the woodwinds around rehearsing 3 times a week – twice with the full band and one time as a section only. We were doing that to clean the songs Gary Kean arranged for us and I really enjoyed that drive.

Also, Sid Viles had approached my father and maybe other board members of TAYB, inquiring about merging Whittier and TAYB into one band. In retrospect, that might have been interesting as Sid would have been much more aligned with focusing on field shows, than Alex DeLao ( the TAYB director at the time ). I think Sid one of the other band directors that referred to TAYB as a “sleeping giant” in regard to potentials for field competition.

But I think one of the issues with TAYB was that the drive would need to have come from the bulk of the band members. As a somewhat unfair comparison, the Blue Devils started as a drum and bell Corp. They were the top of their game in the arena, but they decided to change to a Drum and Bugle Corp – Jerry Seawright actually had bought a full compliment of bugles and stored them in his garage figuring the board would eventually agree to the change. But my point is moreso that the kids that joined the brassline, would, on their own, get together to practice and seek out more musicians, even if they were woodwind players, to learn to play a bugle. According to the roundtable discussion on their 70’s “through the years “, most of the kids went to the same High School in Concord and would recruit and practice. So, the drive to clean up the music and shows was driven hard by the members, making the staff’s job easier. So, there wasn’t the conflict that existed in TAYB. So, my view was that Blue Devils re-invented themselves, tapped into their strengths and expanded upon them, and Torrance had that potential, as most Youth Bands did. But as we saw when we wanted to convert from “whaling” drums to rudimental drums, change is a challenge and like in TAYB’s case ultimately, sometimes better to move on, no matter how strong the tie is.

_________________
Michael Lopez
Torrance Area Youth Band 1971-1979
Los Caballeros Youth Band 1979 - 1981


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 4:12 pm 
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CrystalMage wrote:
Ah ha! Your Phil! I didn’t realize I was talking to you. Yes, my girlfriend and I watched you’all perform live on the live webcast thing. I also bought the DVD!


Twas a ton of work. Glad I did it, but I'll never do it again,heh.

CrystalMage wrote:
Bob seemed to also have a good number of students in Youth Bands. Two who left TAYB with me also took lessons from him. As well, some folks who were still in TAYB did as well. One thing I really remember about him is that when I was leaving, just about to grab the doorknob, he’d always say, “Keep on pluggin”.


Totally! That phrase should be on a t-shirt! heh.

CrystalMage wrote:
I also watched his band perform, and one time sat in with them. It was nice of him to invite me.


Dang...I never got to sit in?? You're lucky,heh.
Yeah..."Soundwave" was pretty neat when they were doing jazz fusion. Then he had to change it into a dance trio,etc. I have his VHS demos for that. Needs to be way cut down,heh.

CrystalMage wrote:
Yeah, Beer Barrel Polka gets almost as bad as “Missippi Mud” – spelling! LOL


Quote:
And we were sitting down playing it and they wanted us to sway back and forth! hahaha.


CrystalMage wrote:
Seems like some directors never considered how weird it looks when we were forced to do something we didn’t like. Doesn’t add anything if it looks labored.

However, speaking of polkas and Youth Bands, when I was still in TAYB, we a few members would perform as a small group in the band’s behalf. We were TAYB’s Polka band and we played at the “Olde Town Mall” and every year, for the folks working on the floats for the Rose bowl Parade. My brother actually started that group and owned the music, and the TAYB staff let him run with it insofar as picking the musicians from our ranks – maximum of two on each instrument.

When we left TAYB and went to Cabbies, the polka band left as well, by default, as we were basically one and the same. We did do one performance on the Cabbies behalf when something came up suddenly and Monte was in a pinch. I give him a lot of kudos that he agreed to have us perform, never having heard us until the actual performance. But he was very happy.

But, other than that, we actually did our own performances off and on, with no Youth Band affiliation. Das Pommen Fritzes we called ourselves. I don’t know if we’d have ever done that if it hadn’t been for TAYB’s tradition to entertain the Rose float folks.


Well...of course the Olde Town Mall and Alpine Village would be the place for the polka thing rather than a 150 piece concert band sitting down,etc. Ok...just my.002 anyway,heh.

Quote:
Cool beans. There's going to be MORE Kingsmen influence shortly. There will be 3 corps with Jim Whobery at the head as executive director.


CrystalMage wrote:
Great! I need to get a hold of someone from KAC soon, because I do have 3 bugles I want to donate, assuming they want them – I was trying my hand at brass playing and got curious about how various G bugles felt, so bought some on ebay a good while back. Now they are just sitting around. I understand they might accept valve/trigger ones as some alumni are most comfortable with that type.


We marched a TON of p/r horns. I'm sure someone in the senior corps or the alumni corps would love to take your p/r horns off your hands. I actually forked out $85 and bought one just to have around the house as a "toy",heh. I certainly couldn't really play one in a horn line tho.....ooops....more drumcorps lore, haha.

CrystalMage wrote:
Interesting interplay between Drum and Bugle Corps and Youth Bands, though. Drum and Bugle corps were the innovators and some Youth Bands learned from that, while in turn, fed experienced musicians to Drum and Bugle Corps.


Yeah...but I do admire "concert band" for sticking to their style even if it DID become somewhat of a dinosaur. They are now the "different" band on the parade route. I have my own little quirky changes I'd add if it were up to me or if I was allowed,heh but it'd be more towards the British style than corps,etc.

Another cool thing was, at least during the time I was in, we won Salinas every year beating all marching musical units including the Blue Devils, Vanguard and the Marine Corps. LBJCB worked on parade "that" hard believe it or not.

CrystalMage wrote:
One hope I and some others had for TAYB was for it to be much more like a Drum and Bugle Corp in regard to how a corp approaches building a field show each year. Not in terms, however, in touring like a corp, so less intense during the summer, but still, the idea of having well arranged songs that are challenging and a challenging field show to match, so that our rehearsals were focused on cleaning. Parades would still have been a big part, but in comparison, easy to what we were focusing on. We were having weekly sectionals for brass, woodwinds and drums, but I was seeing that there wasn’t a consensus within the woodwinds around rehearsing 3 times a week – twice with the full band and one time as a section only. We were doing that to clean the songs Gary Kean arranged for us and I really enjoyed that drive.


At the same time tho....all the rest of the bands were trying to turn into corps too, and now.....they're all gone..doh!! The 3 that are left are barely hanging on.

CrystalMage wrote:
..... So, my view was that Blue Devils re-invented themselves, tapped into their strengths and expanded upon them, and Torrance had that potential, as most Youth Bands did. But as we saw when we wanted to convert from “whaling” drums to rudimental drums, change is a challenge and like in TAYB’s case ultimately, sometimes better to move on, no matter how strong the tie is.


TAYB had a syncopated drum section?? I didn't know that? But you know thinking about this kid of change, really a youth band not doing field shows doesn't really NEED a corps style percussion section right? Dunno....just my .002 again,heh.

Btw....the Blue Devils patterned themselves after the AK. I saw an old video of a meeting when they were discussing it,etc. So I see the BD as what the AK would've/could've become had it not been for the bad management problems we went thru. NOW, of course there's a solid board and a ton of alumni to help.


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 5:45 pm 
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Bandmaster wrote:
fieldshowqueen wrote:
OK ... I was just on one of those Classmates forums and the subject of "that marching group that came to Loara in 1974/75 who had taps on their boots and who were only drums and brass and rifles and who completely trashed the newly painted and sanded gym floor ..." came up. I think this was the Black Knights ???!! Anyone remember this and can confirm? Mr. Marino? vore?


Well it was NOT a youth band! So why is this question in this thread?
I believe the "Geneseo Knights" Drum & Bugle Corps, from Illinois, came to California that summer and competed in DCI shows in SoCal. But there was no "Black Knights" drum corps in California during that time. The "Velvet Knights" would be the only other choice, but they were from here locally, so I doubt they would have needed housing at a local school, unless they used the gym just for a rehearsal?

OK ... my bad. Wrong forum. Sorry.
... and whoever it was, no they did not use the gym for rehearsal. We were all called into a "special assembly" to watch this group during the school year ... not in the summer. I'll post elsewhere and see if anyone else can remember.

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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 7:46 pm 
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I had already aged out of RCYB, was married, and relocated by my employer to Oregon by 1979. It was sure different up here when there was a parade. Usually only 1 a year, with the local high school bands providing the music. My sister, also in RCYB, kept me informed of any news. It was a schocker when she told me of the different bands folding, one by one.


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:51 pm 
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fieldshowqueen wrote:
OK ... my bad. Wrong forum. Sorry.
... and whoever it was, no they did not use the gym for rehearsal. We were all called into a "special assembly" to watch this group during the school year ... not in the summer. I'll post elsewhere and see if anyone else can remember.


No, not the wrong forum... the wrong thread. This thread is about "Youth Bands" and not "Drum Corps." But since you started it here, go ahead and finish it here. :wink: We'll forgive you this time...

If it was an assembly performance then it was either the Kingsmen or the Velvet Knights, both were from the Anaheim area.

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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:35 am 
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TAYB had a syncopated drum section?? I didn't know that? But you know thinking about this kid of change, really a youth band not doing field shows doesn't really NEED a corps style percussion section right? Dunno....just my .002 again,heh.

Btw....the Blue Devils patterned themselves after the AK. I saw an old video of a meeting when they were discussing it,etc. So I see the BD as what the AK would've/could've become had it not been for the bad management problems we went thru. NOW, of course there's a solid board and a ton of alumni to help.


TAYB did have a syncopated drum section. It started around 1975 to 1976, when Norman Bailey was still the director. It was somewhat controversial in that some felt the "whaling" drum section was more traditional and such, was a better fit for our band. While others felt syncopated was where were should move to. Coby Martinez, from Narbonne High School, had joined and helped to change us to synchopated, so he did receive both gratitude and also embittered feelings at the same time. He worked to make due with what we had, but TAYB did buy a full set of Premier marching drums after a while - all chrome plated. Coby left after a while and I think that's when Jim Whobrey signed on as our drum instructor. I believe that was in 1977, because that year, our Shrine show performance included our drum section doing a corp-style solo, which included "Yellow Submarine".

Some of our drummers quit and at least one joined LBJCB. He was a tenor drummer and didn't have the technical skill for synchopated and I don't think he was interested in developing those skills.

I remember the Blue Devils mentioning the Kingsmen as an influence too.

It was really too bad that there were the management problems with the AK. My impression from seeing the 1978 show and hearing about the various things going on during the tour, was that some in the lead seemed to have wanted to cling to the Kingmen's successes of the past too heavily, and that's why the 1978 show appeared antiquated compared to the other top corps. I need to convert them to video and then to clips, but I did take sound movies of the 1978 Kingsmen during their La Palma performance, and maybe the one at the L.A. College as well.

Great that there's a solid board and a lot of alumni helping out.

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Michael Lopez
Torrance Area Youth Band 1971-1979
Los Caballeros Youth Band 1979 - 1981


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:21 am 
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Quote:
TAYB had a syncopated drum section?? I didn't know that? But you know thinking about this kid of change, really a youth band not doing field shows doesn't really NEED a corps style percussion section right? Dunno....just my .002 again,heh.

Btw....the Blue Devils patterned themselves after the AK. I saw an old video of a meeting when they were discussing it,etc. So I see the BD as what the AK would've/could've become had it not been for the bad management problems we went thru. NOW, of course there's a solid board and a ton of alumni to help.


CrystalMage wrote:
TAYB did have a syncopated drum section. It started around 1975 to 1976, when Norman Bailey was still the director. It was somewhat controversial in that some felt the "whaling" drum section was more traditional and such, was a better fit for our band. While others felt syncopated was where were should move to. Coby Martinez, from Narbonne High School, had joined and helped to change us to synchopated, so he did receive both gratitude and also embittered feelings at the same time. He worked to make due with what we had, but TAYB did buy a full set of Premier marching drums after a while - all chrome plated. Coby left after a while and I think that's when Jim Whobrey signed on as our drum instructor. I believe that was in 1977, because that year, our Shrine show performance included our drum section doing a corp-style solo, which included "Yellow Submarine".


Wow...I was in LBJCB then and never saw anybody else except Paramount Patriots attempt a sync section. Guess I was sheltered,heh.

CrystalMage wrote:
Some of our drummers quit and at least one joined LBJCB. He was a tenor drummer and didn't have the technical skill for synchopated and I don't think he was interested in developing those skills.


Do you mean didn't have the technical skills for "rudimental"? To me there really isn't much in technical skills to playing tenor in a sync section, which has good and bad points to it. One good point is that it's inclusive of anyone who lacks drumming experience to learn, and of course that's another debate,heh. 78AK also had a cymbal player who came from TAYB who then went to LBJCB on tenor after tour.

CrystalMage wrote:
I remember the Blue Devils mentioning the Kingsmen as an influence too.


It's said that Seawright totally patterned the new BD after the AK.

CrystalMage wrote:
It was really too bad that there were the management problems with the AK. My impression from seeing the 1978 show and hearing about the various things going on during the tour, was that some in the lead seemed to have wanted to cling to the Kingmen's successes of the past too heavily, and that's why the 1978 show appeared antiquated compared to the other top corps. I need to convert them to video and then to clips, but I did take sound movies of the 1978 Kingsmen during their La Palma performance, and maybe the one at the L.A. College as well.


I would LOVE to have a copy of that? Yeah.....they were trying to re-do the 74 show somewhat but the high leg lift on everything killed our endurance. By 78 most corps had lowered their leg lifts to about low calf or lower while playing and maybe picked em up when not playing,etc. The other problem was the staff totally and completely changed the drill mid tour.

CrystalMage wrote:
Great that there's a solid board and a lot of alumni helping out.


Finally a solid board. It's been a roller coaster the past year, but Whobery is back on board and everything is looking up. 8-)


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:16 pm 
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Quote:
Do you mean didn't have the technical skills for "rudimental"? To me there really isn't much in technical skills to playing tenor in a sync section, which has good and bad points to it. One good point is that it's inclusive of anyone who lacks drumming experience to learn, and of course that's another debate,heh



That’s what I meant. I don’t think the tenor drum parts did much more than eighth notes, perhaps some sixteenth off and on. I don’t recall any former tenor drum player sticking around after we switched. And in the case of one person, I think he took it as a demotion when we qualified for bass drum. My opinion is that there was something extra for a tenor drum player in TAYB, meaning there was a tendency to be a bit of a showman – twirling the tenor drumsticks, playing as loud as you can, etc… But that aspect disappeared with the rudimental drum section – the drum corp style.

I do agree that there’s the aspect that having tenor drums affords someone to participate and to hone their drumming skills. Naturally, they’d have to want to, but in the case I’m speaking of, that was more of a niche than a path.

But, then again, the path is there with rudimental. Start on cymbals, then to bass then to whatever, I figure. I thought about learning how to play cymbals so I could maybe participate in a Drum and Bugle corp way back then, but I also realized, a drum and bugle corp cymbal player is likely a skilled drummer who just didn’t beat out the other drummers for a spot. I don’t know, but that’s what crossed my mind.

I think the debate I’ve seen about rudimental vs whaling ( I guess that’s what you’re referring to syncopated? ) is debatable because it can become a better-than/less-than debate. What I mean is, that one is better-than the other. Well, I think they are different styles and about different preferences. And I’d argue that a trap drummer may well merge some of the two concepts, as who wants to hear all technical rudiments to every rock or blues song, and who wants to hear whaling during “Rondo Ala Turk”?

The reason we fought to get rudimental drums in TAYB was because we wanted that precision in our drum section and for them to have the ability to do drum solos. Naturally, back then, I was much more judgemental and vocal about why, but as I look back, it worked well for us and along the path of were we tried to go.

Quote:
78AK also had a cymbal player who came from TAYB who then went to LBJCB on tenor after tour.


Doug McCutchen? I think he did that, that year. He was with us during our switch to rudimental, and I believe played tri-toms and snare while we was still with us. Then he went to play cymbals with the ’78 Kingsmen, then LBJCB. He was a good drummer and he seemed to like the adventure of it all too!

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Torrance Area Youth Band 1971-1979
Los Caballeros Youth Band 1979 - 1981


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:08 pm 
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Quote:
Do you mean didn't have the technical skills for "rudimental"? To me there really isn't much in technical skills to playing tenor in a sync section, which has good and bad points to it. One good point is that it's inclusive of anyone who lacks drumming experience to learn, and of course that's another debate,heh



CrystalMage wrote:
That’s what I meant. I don’t think the tenor drum parts did much more than eighth notes,perhaps some sixteenth off and on.


Yep.....LBJCB had em playing some fills of 16th singles, but that's as far or fast as it ever went. Really neat and effective in parades if they're all together,etc.

CrystalMage wrote:
I don’t recall any former tenor drum player sticking around after we switched. And in the case of one person, I think he took it as a demotion when we qualified for bass drum. My opinion is that there was something extra for a tenor drum player in TAYB, meaning there was a tendency to be a bit of a showman – twirling the tenor drumsticks, playing as loud as you can, etc… But that aspect disappeared with the rudimental drum section – the drum corp style.


The twirling is cool when it's done together. Aspects of Scottish pipe band, altho LBJCB's tenors and basses did it a bit different. Pipe band technique is to hold a circle("ok" sign) between your thumb and index finger and swing the lanyard/stick within the circle. Sync sections would just thread the lanyard thru their fingers/gloves and spin the mallets in a helicopter type way...heh.

I wouldn't say rudimental bass drum is a demotion,eh? That'd be more of a learning experience to learn some actual stick/mallet bouncing rudiments? heh.

CrystalMage wrote:
I do agree that there’s the aspect that having tenor drums affords someone to participate and to hone their drumming skills. Naturally, they’d have to want to, but in the case I’m speaking of, that was more of a niche than a path.


I've found many tenors and basses from sync sections in the "niche" mode. Not really a "bad thing", but I was more leaning towards the participation angle than the honing mode tho. Anybody with zero drumming experience can play tenor or bass in a sync section and in a way that could be a good thing for being able to participate with the band,etc. LBJCB has had several "non drummers" go to the drum section from various winds sections, especially just after the drummer walk out they had years ago.

CrystalMage wrote:
But, then again, the path is there with rudimental. Start on cymbals, then to bass then to whatever, I figure. I thought about learning how to play cymbals so I could maybe participate in a Drum and Bugle corp way back then, but I also realized, a drum and bugle corp cymbal player is likely a skilled drummer who just didn’t beat out the other drummers for a spot. I don’t know, but that’s what crossed my mind.


Rudimental cymbals would pretty much be all that a sync section tenor/bass would be able to do, since not many know their rudiments, rolls and such. (and I'm speaking of the football jock types of sync tenor/bass players) Can't get around that for trying out for any snare, bass or multitenor spot in a rudimental section. Most rudimental sections I've found all can play all the parts pretty much, since all (except cymbals) are doing sticking, rudiments and figures,etc. So.... I think individually those in a rudimental section fair better for gaining good drumming skills for possible latter drumming in pro situations, whereas most sync tenor/bass drummers do not. (Speaking as a sideline drummer myself who played snare in pipe band and played set in a rock band when I was 15, heh.)

CrystalMage wrote:
I think the debate I’ve seen about rudimental vs whaling ( I guess that’s what you’re referring to syncopated? ) is debatable because it can become a better-than/less-than debate. What I mean is, that one is better-than the other. Well, I think they are different styles and about different preferences. And I’d argue that a trap drummer may well merge some of the two concepts, as who wants to hear all technical rudiments to every rock or blues song, and who wants to hear whaling during “Rondo Ala Turk”?


Debatable for differing purposes no doubt, but take for example Buddy Rich vs. a metal drummer on a drum solo? Rich is going to wow the audience with his snare technique if not all around the set, over a metal drummer who needs tons of extra drums and does 16th singles all around the set for fills,etc. To me, Rich is a better drummer hands down(and many metal drummers would acknowledge this too,heh) whether or not the metal drummer fits into his niche or not. Make any sense?

STILL......the sync section is going to wow the audience as a rolling thunder in a parade, especially between buildings,heh. While the public won't take much notice of a rudimental section going thru. BUT....I'd give the rudimental section the contest on the grass for being able to do more than cadences and do more "stuff". The sync section will sound like cardboard boxes(seen it first hand) on the grass and their thunder will be more like a thud there since the sound gets pounded downward.......into the grass,heh. Rudimental sections have the higher pitched snares with scoops throwing the sound upwards to the audience. Combine that with being clean with each other and you got "standing O" potential. Many SCV drum features come to mind.

Quote:
78AK also had a cymbal player who came from TAYB who then went to LBJCB on tenor after tour.


CrystalMage wrote:
Doug McCutchen? I think he did that, that year. He was with us during our switch to rudimental, and I believe played tri-toms and snare while we was still with us. Then he went to play cymbals with the ’78 Kingsmen, then LBJCB. He was a good drummer and he seemed to like the adventure of it all too!


Yeah...I remember a tall platinum blonde guy. Nice guy too. 8-)


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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 8:49 pm 
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My God, I wish I had known about World of Pageantry years ago. I joined the Whittier Elks Cavaliers in 1967 in the drill team and Monteral Canada Expo 67 was our first big trip. I remember all the bands you have talked about. I helped Ken Adams start the Color Guard for the Cavaliers and when he left I took over. I also joined the Kingsmen the season Sid Viles did. The Cavaliers changed my whole life. Every young adult should join a youth band or drum corp for the experience we all have had.

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 Post subject: Re: CALIFORNIA MARCHING YOUTH BANDS FROM THE 70'S AND 80'S
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:57 am 
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Every young adult should join a youth band or drum corp for the experience we all have had.


I think being in youth bands did a lot of good for me as well. I was in Boy Scouts, but I quit soon after joining TAYB because there just wasn't any comparison of between the two activities for me - even though i did like camping and all that too.

How long were you in Whittier? You did a lot, being in both Whittier and AK!

Nice hearing from you.

Michael

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Torrance Area Youth Band 1971-1979
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