The 2nd Annual Lee County High School Marchin’ Trojan Alumni & Friends Band. I picked up my trumpet last year for the 1st Annual LCHS Marchin’ Trojan Alumni & Friends Band. I wasn’t an alumnus but I’m glad they considered me a friend. I was trying to play music I didn’t know from notes I’d never practiced. “Embrasure” was just a word I used to hear in high school which meant keeping your mouth in shape to play the instrument. If you don’t use it, you lose it. I graduated high school in 1980 but my embrasure didn’t. I knew what was supposed to be coming out of my trumpet but the long-estranged embrasure was no longer my along side. There were some clarinets ahead of me who thought I might make a good freshman, the next year.
Time rolled around for the next Alumni and Friends. I love my trumpet but I also played bass drum in high school. There’s not but one note to hit. There was a bass drum not being used and my trumpet virtuosity wasn’t really in demand, so I went with the bass drum. I got a crash course from the other bass drummers and the whole drum section on some cadences. “That’s all you gotta do!” High School peer pressure is enormous! I did OK on most of the cadences. As for some of the others, let’s just say I missed Band Camp.
During the pre-game ceremonies, the Alumni and Friends Band played the National Anthem on the football field. Then they all sat in the stands in the band section while the football team took a 36-0 lead over Crawford County. The band left to set up for the halftime show a few minutes before the 2nd quarter ended. That’s when the cheerleaders normally do their tumbles. Nonverbal poetry! They are perennially among the best in the state. Football games are like a well orchestrated three ring circus: the band, football team, and cheerleaders. Salute to the Naval JR ROTC as well. The common denominator is our kids.
Speaking of our kids, that’s why we parents march with our kids once a year. We want support them by being “along side” them. “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you of the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceeded from the Father, he shall testify of Me; and ye also shall bear witness because ye have been with me from the beginning.”(John 1:26-27) The “Comforter,” or “Paraclete” in Greek, means “to come along side.” My wife and graduated daughter marched along side Solomon, my son. Other parents marched along side their band member. As God would have it, my bass drum was placed right in front of my son who plays sousaphone. I was along side him for three quarters in the stands. Even as I type this, he is practicing his tuba in my office so he can be along side me as he does. He’s a good freshman this year!
My heroes in the band are the parent concession stand workers. Without them, we could not afford to do the things we do. They work extremely hard and don’t get to watch their kids march during the home halftime show. When you see them rushing to get your food and then the next person’s, know they are thinking of their kids. “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor (along side), Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”(Isaiah 9:6)