There is an obvious....decline in the current high school bands. GRANTED that it is the responsibility of the band directors to maintain the students. HOWEVER...as the most visible and heard examples to kids, and with the change in focal points...do we have part of the blame?

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Yea...u can say out of touch brotha, lol...but it has been this way for a while now...Example...quick and easy...comparisons of UAPB and SU in 08...remember how that went? better yet...UAPB and AlaSU from this past season....it happens ALL the time boss
Thing is SU in 2008 sounded great while "beasting". We can "beast" and sound good at the same time.
@ antonio....+1
Nice Topic...as far as I'm concerned, blame can be spread out in many diffrent avenues. Most immediately though, are the educators themselves. Band Direcotrs must put an emphasis on tone,balance, articulation, etc, as well as pushing challenging literature. In my opinion I think alot of the problems are brought about by too many band directors advocating the year round marching band activities. I think many of our band directors fear going to festivals and state competitons, whether it be an inferiority problem or just a lack of confidence in what they may or may not know as directors, and that has led to far too many predominantly black bands all but doing away with concert, stage, and jazz bands. When I was in High School, my band director placed a huge emphasis on concert band (year round), and concert band competitions. Bottom line was, we liked to play the pop tunes like and other predominantly black band, but we knew how to play all genres. Marching band music will never push students to reach their full potential on their instruments, the literature will never challenge students enoough to progress them musically.

Now on the other hand, look at how many outside factors affect band nowdays.....Mr. Jackson said this to me before I graduated and it is making a ridiculous amount of sense now that Im a band director. He said "When we were gorwing up, there were no cell phones, ipods, video games, computers etc., as a result playing on our instruments was as close as we got to any type of extra entertainment, there werent many people with televisions, and even if you had one, there werent that many channels", look at all the distractions we have now for students to get side tracked by.

Lets not give state governments a free pass here either, whenever they cut education budgets, fine arts is the first thing to go, here in Texas they are cutting band directors left and right, so how can we possibly sustain bands with no teachers?


I could go on all day
I don't wanna play both sides of the fence, thus I asked....for me....it's a "yea,but no" type thing...

wow i havent posted on BAND HEAD IN LIKE 6 MONTHS..lol..wsup pplzzzz..

 

anyway..this is a familiar thread my response is this

 

A

We do have a part of the blame as far as making sure high school bands are imitating QUALITY HABITS from us a collegiate musicains...and not gettin the wrong concept of being a bandsmen/musician etc!

 

B

Part of the reasons why bands are declining is because there is a new breed of kids...their focus is changed from wanting to be in fine art programs to wanting to BANG ... BE NFL & NBA Players (which are slim)...wanting to play Black ops and madden all day.... be in JUVENILLE ....OR BE SOME LAME LOCAL RAPPER!!

The problem starts from the top.. The schools themselves.
this is simple...they imitate what they see...and on bandhead, a bigger emphasis is put on "crankin" rather than intonation and things of that nature...2's....
"They imitate what they see...." <My main point
Point blank, High school kids imitate what they SEE without knowing the background work and preparation that goes in behind it!  Yea we scream and hangover at JSU but we work, have "screaminals" and we know whats going to go where. Everything done, (at least in my experience) has been worked on. But when kids see it they attempt to do it without putting in the effort that we have. THATS WHERE THE KIDS DIRECTORS COME INTO PLAY. They have to stop CUT IT OFF before it becomes HABITUAL. If you band isn't capable of doing it while still being musical. STOP THEM FROM DOING IT!!!!! I grew up around niggaz trying to scream and hearing all types of WRONG NOTES... but my director told my from jump, if you gonna do it. DO IT RIGHT!!!!
....breathing in....about to actually agree with you on something. I told my friend, simply put....every one of us (black college bands) play marches, warm ups, technique exercises, and etc.....it is not our fault that these kids directors don't teach them the importance of musicianship, and that the kids themselves don't value musicianship...that is NOT our problem entirely...they watch what they want to watch. In reference to JSU, or even SU,....these kids don't go look on youtube for "JSU-Purple Carnival" or "SU Purple Carnival" or "JSU or SU Barnum and Bailey"....they look for what they want....and what they are taught is music...neck...400 degrees....etc....which can be executed good, but if they are not taught a foundation of musicianship, it will ALWAYS fail. I was taught under a director that made us better study the craft of band, not just the HBCU aspect....which I independently learned to love, but cats like Sousa, Karl King, etc....and trombonists of notability. PLUS....how many bands still even GO to festival?
I agree with the both of you. Band directors are so caught up on "cranking" or "blowing" that they fail to teach their students the fundamentals of music first. I'm from Chicago and have witness this epidemic for several years now. Students became interested in band after watching the movie Drumline or seeing a band perform on television, so they decide to join the band. Instead of learning the proper ambature, scales, READING, long tones, lip slurs,etc...they are taught the fingerings to ESPN and told to play as loud as they can. They watch the collegiate bands and ATTEMPT to sound the same, but the end product is horrible. I can complain about this all day because I took it upon myself to give back and work with a few high schools in the city every summer since 2003 and whenever time permits. I beleive that it is the directors responsibility to teach the future but I also feel that we as Alumni/Current Collegiate Musicians should also assist in preserving the craft of music...it takes a village to raise a child......same philosophy can apply to musicians.....transfer of learning.

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