By Braddah Lance
For those who braved the youtube video I posted last week can obviously conclude that I was in band - several at that. Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Symphony Orchestra, Marching Band and of course Jazz Band. Yup, a band geek and proud of it!
Back in da day, being labeled a "geek" of any sort was tough enough but I'll be the first to admit that being a band geek was well worth it. In high school, there are tons of groups besides the BG's just trying to fit in and "being cool": Orch Dorks, Jocks, Yearbook, Goth and the countless others but I don't think many people outside of band realize how much opportunities are presented to band members. If you were part of several groups even better but band was in a class of it's own.
Aside from learning how to play an instrument (I was fortunate to have learned several), not only does your range of music appreciation broaden, but the experiences you gain outweigh any ridicule you may/may not encounter. We met tons of people from different schools during festivals or competition, learn disclipline and duty, and just being a part of something that represented your school was honor enough.
I won't lie, the best part of band was getting out of school early whether it be assemblies or travel. Ahhh, the travel. I've been to Kauai, Maui, and the Big Island several times but it was "off da rock" trips that I'll never forget. California (Rose Bowl), Washington, Canada and best yet Japan. Oh yeah, then there's...Band Camp. Let's just say watching "American Pie" stirs up a lot of memories.
Band did help shape the way I've developed as a person and for that I'm forever grateful. Like most anyone, not only those in band, I'm sure if you had an opportunity to give back to something that had given you so much, you would do it in a heartbeat. After graduation, I spent a few years as a staff member with the marching band to "give back" to a program that instilled much of the values I have today. It must have been the countless hours of learning your craft from night and weekend practices that made you appreciate that the more you put in, the more you get out and that made it hard to let go once it was all said and done.
Was any hui you were in back in da day as lucky as I was?...especially coming from a public school?
SHOUTOUT: My alma mater, Moanalua High School, is seeking donations to purchase a much needed instrument - the Marimba. Everyone knows by now that the state lacks funds for school programs - Wassap Wit Dat? - so the only recourse is to ask for private donations. While I know many of you are not alumni - or have any connection with MoHS - any help is appreciated (gotta try ask yeah?). Donations are even accepted online - just click the link above and it's on the right hand side - how cool is dat?! And yes of course, my donation has been sent...via online.