I’m still sorry, Mr. Johnson…
Yesterday, when I wrote the post about Andy Williams‘ passing, I included the YouTube version of his Born Free. For the remainder of the day, I thought of the tympani score for that piece–a focal point of our SCHS concert band spring concert in 1968. Providing that dramatic drum intro was my responsibility. And, as I recall, I made great noise with equally great uncertainty as to pitch. And for that, Melvin Johnson, I am still sorry, 45 years after the fact.
There are students to whom the mysteries of music are revealed in sweet sequence. I am not one of them. I simply wanted to be in the band. I wanted to be with my friends. Marilyn, Marvin and Steve on cornet. Doris, Linda, Barb and Teresa on flute. Dottie and Bonnie on clarinet. David on tuba. Gary on sax. Glenda and Alan…memory search underway. Jill, David and John on drums. (You had already graduated, Dennis.) And I wanted to be surrounded by something beautiful at a time when I felt so much the opposite.
Actually, the best I can say is that I never broke one of the expensive tympani drum heads. And I am not calling you out, Bob and Randy. I’m simply saying, I didn’t. 😉
The power that music programs play in our young lives came back, forte and grandissimo, with a story in yesterday’s Denver Post. Seems the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation has, with some help from local entities, granted $4000 in instruments to one of our area high schools.
I understand budgets are tight. But in my brain, the arts are not extras. They teach math and science. They teach persistence and discipline. They teach us to show up on time, prepared–as best we can be–and put what we’ve learned on the line.
And not to chew gum.
Sorry about that, too. 😉