Ray Kimber

Time to Say Goodbye, after 15 years

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54 minutes ago, MikeD said:

We are giving our own opinions in these forums. You and others are free to believe as you wish, as am I.

Instrumentation is not what makes drum corps unique to me...note I said "to me". 

 

Absolutely, to each his own.  My prior message was in response to your statement implying "a few" people may find the instrumentation an important and defining factor.  My counter to your statement is that it is likely many, many diehard fans/alumni/members feel the all-brass and percussion sound and visual look is THE defining characteristic of the activity.  

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7 hours ago, JimF-LowBari said:

They’d make great drumsticks imo...

not really the rebound sucks

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6 hours ago, cybersnyder said:

I get it, i just think it’s the line between marching band and woodwinds. Bring back majorettes?

only if they wear the old school boots

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4 hours ago, garfield said:

Good GOLLY, I'm so glad you stated this.

i've been saying it for years. it's ignored cause, well, #facts

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17 hours ago, Jeff Ream said:

no i don't teach woodwinds

Jeff Ream for "DCI Brass Coordinator"

I'm the "Old Corps Guy" and I approve this message.:lol:

Edited by Old Corps Guy
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13 hours ago, MikeD said:

Think of a pyramid of organizations for marching/music.

The organizations in the bottom 90+% are the bulk of the units. There are then a relatively very few top level groups.

Back in my era (pre-DCI), the entire pyramid was pretty much drum corps units. Hundreds of smaller corps at every level from parade corps through circuits such as the Garden State Circuit here in NJ, with others at that level around the country. There were then the national level corps at the very top. Even when there were hundreds of corps, there were still only a handful at the top, similar to today. Kids in smaller corps moved up the pyramid all the time. My own example is that I marched a parade corps from age 10-14, then a GSC corps 15-16, and then Garfield ages 17-19. 

Flash forward to today. The 90+% of units under the very top are the competitive HS bands, by the thousands now. At the very top are the WC DCI corps.

That is so incorrect on so many levels, it is impossible to respond succinctly.  So bear with me.

First and foremost, you pretend like there was no competitive marching band activity BITD.  Just because it was smaller, or maybe your own HS did not participate (yet), does not mean it did not exist.  Marching bands competed in American Legion, VFW, various other civic organizations, and at the scholastic level going back at least to the 1920s.  (Did not forget CYO, but could only trace them back to the 1930s.)

Then, once you recognize that fact, portraying BITD as a "pyramid of organizations for marching/music" is very misleading.  As many have testified here, bands and corps were so at odds with one another in many areas that it was not possible to participate in both.  They were not only separate activities... the differences between them were so distinct that they deterred cross-participation.

(The TL;DR crowd can skip ahead now.)

Characterizing top groups BITD as "only a handful at the top, similar to today" is also very misleading.  Sure, you can always say that the top 6 had just as many corps then as now.  6.  Name any year, and I know the answer.  Guess how many corps were in the top 6 in 1929?  6!  But moving past self-fulfilling prophecies, a metric that actually matters would be how many corps competed at the top level.  In the 1960s, over 100 corps competed in nationally open contests.  In the 1970s, the DCI Championship alone quickly rose to 57 contestants before they started cutting off open-class at a maximum of 48, and wait-listing later applicants.  Starting in 1983, the number permanently sank below that threshold, and since the early 1990s it has hovered in the low 20s as it does today.

Kids did not "move up the pyramid all the time" BITD.  Just because you did, does not mean it was even possible, much less common, for other kids.  Corps loyalty was a much bigger thing back then.  Travel was not as cheap and easy either, so if you did not have other corps available locally as you did, your only option was to stay with your corps.

Quote

Kids who participate in those thousands of competitive bands eventually become the members of the WC corps. All that is, except the WW players. I just see no reason in 2019 to leave them out. DCI is the very top of marching/music. Why should WW players be excluded from that level? 

They are not excluded.  You will find WW players among the brass, percussion, guard and DMs of existing corps at all levels.

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11 hours ago, MikeD said:

I look at it from the point of view that there is no logical reason in this day and age to prohibit WW, when the feeders to DCI are scholastic band programs, not old-time small local corps.

A better quality product seems like a logical enough reason for me.  And drum corps instrumentation is more effective on the field without woodwinds.

(But I realize that ever since amplification was introduced, clearly DCI does not behave logically.)

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1 hour ago, cixelsyd said:

That is so incorrect on so many levels, it is impossible to respond succinctly.  So bear with me.

First and foremost, you pretend like there was no competitive marching band activity BITD.  Just because it was smaller, or maybe your own HS did not participate (yet), does not mean it did not exist.  Marching bands competed in American Legion, VFW, various other civic organizations, and at the scholastic level going back at least to the 1920s.  (Did not forget CYO, but could only trace them back to the 1930s.)

Then, once you recognize that fact, portraying BITD as a "pyramid of organizations for marching/music" is very misleading.  As many have testified here, bands and corps were so at odds with one another in many areas that it was not possible to participate in both.  They were not only separate activities... the differences between them were so distinct that they deterred cross-participation.

(The TL;DR crowd can skip ahead now.)

Characterizing top groups BITD as "only a handful at the top, similar to today" is also very misleading.  Sure, you can always say that the top 6 had just as many corps then as now.  6.  Name any year, and I know the answer.  Guess how many corps were in the top 6 in 1929?  6!  But moving past self-fulfilling prophecies, a metric that actually matters would be how many corps competed at the top level.  In the 1960s, over 100 corps competed in nationally open contests.  In the 1970s, the DCI Championship alone quickly rose to 57 contestants before they started cutting off open-class at a maximum of 48, and wait-listing later applicants.  Starting in 1983, the number permanently sank below that threshold, and since the early 1990s it has hovered in the low 20s as it does today.

Kids did not "move up the pyramid all the time" BITD.  Just because you did, does not mean it was even possible, much less common, for other kids.  Corps loyalty was a much bigger thing back then.  Travel was not as cheap and easy either, so if you did not have other corps available locally as you did, your only option was to stay with your corps.

They are not excluded.  You will find WW players among the brass, percussion, guard and DMs of existing corps at all levels.

So much wrong with the above.

There were only a relative handful of corps at the top, even pre-DCI. I took a look at VFW Nats from 64-70. Taking a look at the top 4 positions, there are 28 slots. Only seven corps occupied those 28 positions over that period of time, with BS doing it just once. Yes, corps competed in class 'A' shows all the time, but that doesn't change the fact that there were only a relative few that were top-level corps. 

As for kids moving, it was happening all the time. Not just me. Most of the Cadets in my era had started someplace else, and kids from smaller corps moved to the bigger corps all the time. Yes, some started and ended in one place. Never said they did not. and I generally agree, the movement was far more local. Kids from GSC corps like I was in generally moved to Garfield, Blessed Sac or St Lucy's in the 60's., if they wanted to move up the chain. 

As for marching band contests, yes there were a few, but not a lot. It wasn't until the 70's that the SCHOLASTIC competition scene started to take off, due to the influx of corps members who became band directors. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, cixelsyd said:

A better quality product seems like a logical enough reason for me.  And drum corps instrumentation is more effective on the field without woodwinds.

 

The lack of woodwinds does not make drum corps a "better quality product".  

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I’m sure it will be great.  Have at it.  But I want to hear this. 

 

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