Roland F. Seitz

Roland Forrest Seitz was born in 1867 in Pennsylvania to William and Magdalena Zeigler Seitz. His paternal grandparents had come to America from Germany just over 100 years earlier. Roland was the youngest of eight children. His father died when Roland was only three, and as a youth, Roland began working as an apprentice printerContinue reading “Roland F. Seitz”

Karl King – In His Own Words

(Posted with Permission) By Karl L. King (Extracted from a December 19, 1966 Interview with Karl King by Dr. Karl M. Holvik) Full interview posted in the June & October 1982 Circus Fanfares, available to Members at MYWJU.ORG This article published in the July-August 2020 Circus Fanfare Early Years I think I first became interestedContinue reading “Karl King – In His Own Words”

Julius Fučik

Like so many other band composers, Julius Fučik was born into a musical family in Prague, Czechoslovakia (then known as Bohemia) in 1872. His principal instrument was bassoon and he studied composition under Antonin Dvorák. Fučik joined a regimental Austro-Hungarian band while he was in his late teens and played with the group until heContinue reading “Julius Fučik”

Carmen Dragon

Carmen Dragon was a noted composer, arranger and conductor. He was born July 28, 1914 in Antioch, California to a family of Italian heritage. He died in Los Angeles on March 28, 1984. According to his obituary in the New York Times, by his teens he had learned to play the piano, string bass, accordion,Continue reading “Carmen Dragon”

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”