I Ran Away with the Drum Corps


Day 1 and 2

June 23, 2017 – Big Loud and Live

Well the season officially kicked off last night. This is my first blog from the road. Last night, I attended the cinema performance – Big, Loud, and Live – of the first 2017 DCI competition from Indianapolis at the Crossgates Mall in Albany, NY with a virtually full house in attendance. Though it is not like being at the event live in the stadium, it was surely entertaining. Bluecoats, Carolina Crown, Cavaliers, Cadets, Blue Stars and Crossmen, finished in that order. It was a good chance to talk to other fans and get their thoughts. It is clear that many older fans are not comfortable with the creative changes in the activity. The big takeaway for me from watching all of the performance was – SPEED. It is unbelievable how these kids can move from dot to dot with speed and grace while maintaining the power of the sound. It appears that all corps are now firmly in the 21st century with uniforms. Another takeaway from last night was, there is a lot of room for BAC to surge into the top tier with Wicked Games.

I am at the Iroquois rest area on the NYS Thruway on day two of my journey, slurping a large dark roast and writing this piece as my devices charge. Convenience necessitated my sleeping in the Volvo last night – not bad. No stiff neck. Today I am traveling to Columbiana, a small community in northeast Ohio to meet up with the Boston Crusaders for their first competition in Massillon. I will be taking a detour to visit my old alma mater, VVS High School near Rome, New York where I was born. In August, the Crusaders will perform at the Drums Along the Mohawk in Rome. I have tickets to that show and will be with my two sisters. BTW - Drums Along the Mohawk is a famous novel by Walter Edmonds (and movie starring young Henry Fonda) that dealt with the tensions between the early settlers and the natives in the Mohawk Valley. Tension and release will surely take place on the Rome Free Academy field on August 6. Meanwhile, on to the Midwest were I will be heading into the teeth of tornado country. Keep your hat on.

Day 3

This personal reflection of my 10-day vacation as an intern-volunteer with the Boston Crusaders, a world class drum and bugle corps, started out as a daily blog. I have compiled my daily entries here into this diary-style essay.

Return to Along the Mill Brook

The entire corps is on the field for the performance of Giant, the corps’ song.