Friday, February 27, 2004

Gee outa da way!

The Bare Naked Ladies played Toronto last night. See: Mid-life Ladies aging well

As many of you Ambassador alums who marched in '80 and later probably know Tyler Stewart is an Ambassador who marched in 1980, '81 and '82. I remember I had a rather disastrous brush with him when the band was still relatively new. At least it was new enough that Andy Creaghan was still at UofToronto Music at the same time I was there.

I was at a bar in Toronto one evening (yes Andy, that is hard to believe) with my friend and fellow horn player Darcy when he recognized some of the 'Ladies there. It was just Andy and Tyler there. Darcy and Andy were friends at the time. It came out that I knew Tyler and I was prompted to greet him. Unfortunately I was a more excitable fellow then and the best I could come up with was: "Tyler! You so-and-so!". Except is wasn't "so-and-so" that I said.

I am not sure what I was thinking. Perhaps I thought I should attempt some Drum Corps style camaraderie via strange humour. At any rate, Tyler took this wrong, if there is a right way to take it. I should have apologized profusely but unfortunately I ducked out like a coward. Tyler and I probably never would have crossed paths again but I am always reminded of this incident when I hear them on the radio and feel badly.

It's too bad. I remember I was happy and proud of Tyler and I wanted to somehow communicate that to him, but the moment passed and now I doubt he's in much need of support from me. I ought to buy a few 'Ladies albums if I feel that badly I suppose.

If you should somehow read this Tyler, please accept my sincere apologies. I don't know what I was thinking.

- Sam

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Hey Rookie!

I missed my blog anniversary! This all started on Feb. 17, 2003. It's debatable wether its been a contribution to the drum corps world but it's been fun so far and I plan to keep it up. - Sam

Monday, February 16, 2004

Don't do that or I'll have to drop you on your head

The business of adding amplification to pit instruments has been around for some time. In my age-out year, my second, with Blue Devils in 1985, we toured with some equipment on loan from Yamaha (I think it was Yamaha... old brain cells) that included electronic keyboards and drums. The pit people mostly used it to play "Axel F" whenever they had a chance to plug the stuff in. I am guessing that it was packed with the drum gear. I am not sure if it survived the fire we had on tour to Madison. At any rate, there was discussion about this almost twenty years ago. I remember that it was a small issue in '79 or '80 with Ambassadors too as there was some debate wether true vibraphones, with the little rotating disc dohickys to effect vibrato, were legal on the field. The consensus at that time I believe was that if it had batteries it was not legal in ODCA or DCI.

We seem to have come a long way. Although I am an old geezer when it comes to rule changes, this one seems to have been considered for a long time and I suppose it should be given a chance.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Who's Using Amps in 2004?

Ay Carumba! Amps?!?

Drum Corps Planet: Who's Using Amps in 2004?

By Staff
Jan 28, 2004, 11:12

(Snip from

"After a weekend during which corps debated, learned and listened to presentations about amplification, Division I corps are split almost evenly on whether or not they plan to use it in 2004, with an equal percentage still undecided.

An informal poll conducted by phone and e-mail earlier this week found that six Division I corps plan to use amplification, nine do not plan to use it, and seven corps are undecided thus far.

Corps planning to use amplification:
Blue Knights
Boston Crusaders
Magic of Orlando
Seattle Cascades

Monday, February 02, 2004

News Feed from Drum Corps Planet

Drum Corps Planet does a better job of keeping up with Drum Corps news than me and they have kindly set up a method of posting their headlines to any web site. So you may now see the latest on the column on the left.

[You will have to have a javascript-capable browser and hove that capability turned on for it to work. If it doesn't work for you, try the link to the DCP site. They are doing a good job there.]

CSS fun

I am playing with the style of this blog to hopefully make it more readable. I have made some progress on the left column.