Sousa Comes to Amarillo, 1925

“Boy Soprano Cared More for Cave Than Warbling for Sousa” This was a headline in the Fort Worth Star Telegram, December 24, 1925. The great band leader had come to the Panhandle to do a concert. Thirteen year old “Balie” (actually spelled Bailey) Warren had been invited to sing for the Sousa Band over theContinue reading “Sousa Comes to Amarillo, 1925”

America’s Brass Band Heritage – Brass Bands Mature in America

by Larry Johnson When the Civil War broke out, all the elements necessary to provide Regimental Bands were in place. When recruiters raised a regiment, all they had to do was go into an area and muster in enough preexisting militia companies to form a regiment. No matter where the recruiters went, somewhere nearby wasContinue reading “America’s Brass Band Heritage – Brass Bands Mature in America”

America’s Brass Band Heritage – Bands Come to America

by Larry Johnson Military bands in America developed along the same lines as those in Europe. What few American bands there were at the time of our Revolution were clarinet and oboe-centered. These saw the introduction of keyed bugles in the very early 19th Century, and then converted to brass as soon as the valvedContinue reading “America’s Brass Band Heritage – Bands Come to America”

America’s Brass Band Heritage – Turkey to Europe

by Larry Johnson As Turkish armies marched across Europe they carried with them bands of shawms (primitive oboes), trumpets, flutes and percussion. The melody instruments (shawms) predominated, but other instruments were present. The Turkish Janissary Bands were notable in their use of percussion, which included the bass drum, cymbals, triangle and pairs of nakers, whichContinue reading “America’s Brass Band Heritage – Turkey to Europe”

America’s Brass Band Heritage – Ancient History

by Larry Johnson It all started with Joshua. Or did it? The idea of making some kind of noise for the dual purposes of frightening the enemy and inspiring one’s own troops appears for the first time in recorded history at the time the ancient Israelites began the conquest of Canaan. But the practice isContinue reading “America’s Brass Band Heritage – Ancient History”