The Evolution of Drum Harnesses
Posted 01 November 2011 - 11:29 AM (#2)
My first memory of seeing a harness - or some bent pipes - was to carry tenors in 1974. 27th had puchased a new set of Slingerlands and we got some white metal frames. They were not sturdy enough (we carried 14, 16, 18 inch - maybe even 16, 18 20 inch drums) and we were constantly bending them to get the drums level. Eventually during the season the pieces broke and we ended up scabbing thin steel plates with nuts and bolts.
In 1973, McCormick's Enterprises came out with a astronaut looking timp harness. I remember Blue Stars used it. SCV and many others were using snare slings, 27th used an aluminum harness with counter weights to carry our timps.
I am thinking SCV was the first corp to transition to the formed fiberglass harness in 1975 for their tenors. By 1976, 27th also used a formed fiberglass tenor harness.
I think it was 1979, and SCV, that had the snares using the formed fiberglass harness. In true SCV style, it worked perfectly with their tunics and was completely hidden, while other corps wore the vest like harnesses over their unis, and it looked like crap - 27th included.
Photos will show that most lines were using harnesses on snares and tenors in 1981 - Bayonne was the last holdout - using snare straps to carry their snares.
27th had a deal with Rogers Drums in 1979 - snares, tenors and bass all wore special harnesses - but when we went to Slignerland in 1980 - we used an XLT carrier for snares, back to the formed fiberglass for tenors, and snare straps for bass and timp.
Timps never went to a harness except for the short lived McCormick's carrier.
By the late 1980's, I think everyone was using a harness of some type to carry their battery equipment - some were "home made" while others were commercially available.
Hoping others will add their recollection as well.
27th Lancers 73,74,76,77,94 - Staff 80,81,82,83,94
Posted 01 November 2011 - 11:41 AM (#3)
World Drum Corps HOF 2007
Bushwackers HOF 2012
"Pressure is something you feel only when you don't know what you are doing"
Posted 01 November 2011 - 11:46 AM (#4)
Posted 01 November 2011 - 04:41 PM (#5)
Posted 01 November 2011 - 09:48 PM (#6)
Right you are, Frank, but I have heard conflicting stories about who actually fabricated Jim's design idea. One was that someone in the corps or part of the support staff was able to have it made in a metal shop he owned or where he worked. The other was that Jim got in touch with Larry McCormick from Chicago and had him make the harness that he designed. I'm not sure which is the factual account. I do know that both the original timbale harness from 1961 and the original bongo harness from '62 (which I wore in 1966) were both used well into the early 1970's. That year, we added double congas for the first time, and I believe they were also a 'homemade' design, but I couldn't swear to it.
Hawthorne Caballeros 1966-1971, 1973 - First Undefeated Season in DCA History
Caballeros Alumni Charter Member, Snaredrum, 1994-Present
Caballeros Alumni Percussion Instructor/Coordinator 2001 - 2003, 2006 - Present
World Drum Corps Hall of Fame Associate Member, 2002
Proud father of a Second-generation Caballero!
Posted 01 November 2011 - 11:48 PM (#7)
Posted 02 November 2011 - 05:56 AM (#8)
But when Blue Devils came out in '76 with the North Tenors I fell in love. Their uniforms made the harness completely disappear but the drums must have felt like carring tymps
This post has been edited by john2780: 02 November 2011 - 05:57 AM
1969 - 1974 I. C. Reveries
1975 - 1980 27th Lancers