2016 World Drum Corps Hall Of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award

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WDCHOF_100X100Two individuals with outstanding lifetime achievements will be inducted into the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame during the organization’s 40th annual ceremony to be held September 3 in Rochester, New York, one of the special events during the Drum Corps Associates (DCA) championship tournament weekend. The two lifetime achievers will hold regular Hall of Fame membership status along with seven other new inductees.

Steve Gadd, born in Irondequoit, New York and now living in Phoenix, Arizona, is the winner of this year’s Distinguished Professional Achievement award. He is one of the best-known session and studio drummers in the music industry, featured on more than 600 albums since his first recording in the late 1960s.

Dan Acheson is the winner of the 2016 President’s Lifetime Achievement Award. During his two decades of service as executive director of Drum Corps International (DCI) the organization has evolved into a program that delivers the message of “excellence in performance and in life” to more than 7.2 million young people involved in performing arts in the United States.

Details of their lengthy achievements are as follows:

Steve Gadd – Distinguished Professional Achievement Award winner
Steve Gadd’s achievements include winning a national drum and bugle corps championship as a young man, followed by steady recognition from many other music organizations. In 2005, he received an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Berklee College of Music for outstanding contributions to contemporary music. He was inducted into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame the same year. In 2003 he received the Zildjian American Drummer’s Achievement Award. He received the Drummer’s Collective Award in 2002.

He has been a member of the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame since 1984. In 1961 was one of about 70 high school students from across the country selected to play in the School Band of America, which visited 12 cities in six European countries during a four-week tour.

As a child, he performed tap dance routines in hospitals and nursing homes with his brother Eddie, winning a local talent contest that lead to a west coast appearance on the Mickey Mouse Club television show.

He began drumming at age seven when he a family member gave him a drum set. His interest in drumming emerged even earlier. After watching parades he began to imitate drummers, using a knife and fork for drum sticks. He later played snare drum with a number of Rochester area drum and bugle corps, including the national champion Rochester Crusaders. The drum corps experience taught him the power of team members playing together, practicing hard trying to sound like just one person. His drumming has strongly influenced many drum and bugle
corps over the years. His intro to Chuck Mangione’s Legend of the One-Eyed Sailor, based on the rudimental solo Crazy Army, became a drum corps classic, performed in competition by 37 different corps since 1974.

He grew up in a rich Rochester area music environment, attending local clubs with his parents to hear such jazz greats as Dizzy Gillespie (sitting in with him on drums at age 11), Stan Getz, Max Roach, Art Blakey, Oscar Peterson, Kai Winding, Carmen McCrae, Ray Bryant and others.

After graduating from East Ridge High School he enrolled in the Manhattan School of Music, then returned to Rochester to attend the Eastman School of Music. He enlisted in the United States Army while in his last year in college, auditioning and being accepted for the Army’s Field Band in the Washington D.C. area then returning to Rochester on his discharge in late 1971.

At the urging of a friend, he began travelling to New York City to do studio sessions, the start of a career that would see him working with the top music stars of the following five decades, including Frank Sinatra, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Steely Dan, Joe Cocker, Chick Corea, Chuck Mangione, Barbra Streisand, Eric Clapton, James Taylor, Jim Croce, Manhattan Jazz Quintet, Carly Simon, Jon Bon Jovi, Chet Baker, the Bee Gees, Michael McDonald, Kate Bush, David Sanborn.

His ability to amalgamate various jazz styles is evident on such songs as Paul Simon’s 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover with its distinctive drum groove; the distinctive beat of Van McCoy’s disco anthem The Hustle and on the title track of Steely Dan’s album Aja.

He performed during the famous Simon and Garfunkel Concert in Central Park and was featured in Paul Simon’s movie One Trick Pony. He has recorded and toured with guitar great Eric Clapton. He toured with James Taylor in 2014 and again earlier this year.

Dan Acheson – President’s Lifetime Achievement Award
Within a year of beginning his term of office as chairman of the Drum Corps International (DCI) board of directors in 1995, Dan Acheson was named executive director and chief executive officer (CEO). At the beginning of this year, the board marked his two decades of continuous service by extending his contract for another two years.

During the 10 years previous to his service with DCI, he served as executive director of the Glassmen drum and bugle corps of Toledo, Ohio, a 16-time DCI world championship finalist. As a youth, he marched with Madison Scouts and Queen City Cadets of Cincinnati, Ohio – the first corps to take the field at the initial DCI championship preliminaries in 1972. During his decade with the Glassmen, he helped the organization develop strong community relations while reaching a high level of achievement on national level contest fields.

In 2008, he was inducted into the DCI Hall of Fame and was also recognized by the National Association for Music Education as a Lowell Mason Fellow for his contributions to the field of music education.

He is widely recognized for his high standard of professionalism, leading by example while acknowledging the achievements of others involved in the activity.

During his 20 years in office, Drum Corps International has become a youth organization with artistic, educational and organizational influence around the world. The annual operating budget is now more than $11 million, with annual revenues about three times higher than when he first took office 20 years ago.

DCl member corps entertain millions of people through live performances on contest fields and broadcast events. The organization has come to be known as “Marching Music’s Major League.”

More than 5,000 corps members participate in DCI drum and bugle corps contests across the country, attracting about 400,000 fans to more than 100 events. Each year, about 8,000 young people from more than 15 countries audition to fill the 3,500 positions available in the top-level corps.

The World Drum Corps Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization honoring those individuals who have contributed significantly over many years to the development and continuing excellence drum and bugle corps activity. The organization also seeks to preserve the history of the drum and bugle corps movement in North America by selecting a noteworthy junior and all age (senior) corps of the decade.

Regular World Drum Corps Hall of Fame members are honored for their dedication, contributions and achievements over a long period of time in categories including administration, arranging, adjudication, instruction, innovation and design. Associate members have dedicated at least five consecutive years of service to any drum and bugle corps as a performer or in a support role.

For more information about the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame visit the web site at http://www.worlddrumcorpshof.org

Posted by on Thursday, May 19th, 2016. Filed under DCA News, FrontPage Feature.