To Form A More Perfect Unison

As a boy in primary school I was always fascinated and attracted to rhythms, beating tempos, and the various mixtures of independent rhythms into a harmonious grand production. To me there was endless possibilities of creating ensembles from endless particulars. Take this one unique rhythm, join it with another, then another, and so on until they all become a masterpiece. And so for the following years of my youth I wanted to be a drummer, a Maestro of metre, a Captain of cadence and Lord of the Skins. Doing just that was like a drug to me. Doing it with other drummers was the ultimate high. I miss it. I miss it terribly, especially the comradery and connecting syncopated souls. Today, that longing has another meaning.

During this time leading up to what is surely going to be a monumental, make-or-break election that determines whether the USA collapses in on itself in more strife and division, or it makes a turn for healing, for recovery—recovery across ALL sections of our society, economy, and government. In that spirit I want to offer a great example of sublime, supreme teamwork, incredible commitment to perfecting their art and discipline to THE WHOLE and to each other. It’s not just to self, or one or two sectors or class of people, but it’s to clear syncopation and united, of being on the same exact tempo, and thus performing as one with many. “E pluribus unum.” With many hardworking, unique parts contributing to a final product of sheer beauty, awe, exquisite precision, and collaboration by every single member.

I give you Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Corps of Drums and the Swiss Top Secret Drum Corps performing not opposed, but together as one. Something our U.S. government, White House and officials should learn and behave accordingly for ALL Americans. Crank up your volume if you feel so inclined and send a signal you want beaten in to some thick skulls on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington D.C. πŸ˜‰


Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always — Come Together/Vote

11 thoughts on “To Form A More Perfect Unison

    • SaQ, I too was in all those groups, playing percussions only of course. I 2nd your favorite, marching band was the most fun. πŸ˜‰ What I loved most during football games were the “drum-offs” between bands all game long. We usually lost however, to the other 7-8 HS drumlines… who had a superior “ethnic advantage and free-style” over us…umm, primarily caucasian drumline in my 4-years, if you catch my drift. If not, I grew up in South (south) Dallas in a specific geographic & demographic mix of 33.3%, 33.3%, and 33.3% while the other HS’s in our district were heavier percentages in one ethnicity.

      So as a repressed drummer in my drumline with ridiculous ‘social restrictions’ made me always jealous of the other drumlines “kickass beats.” πŸ˜πŸ˜„ AND they could all dance better than us too! πŸ˜›

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  1. Awesome post. First, great idea using corps bands as a way of illustrating what’s wrong with our country right now. Second, fantastic video. I was a band person in high school and since I played the oboe, they had me carry a tenor drum during marching season. I wanted to get good at it but since I basically stunk, I switched to flag corps. My fellow flag friends and I liked to travel to corps band competitions to get ideas for new moves but I loved everything about their shows–the choreography, the precision, the drums, the rifle carriers… I still love seeing DCI videos on youtube. This was a treat. Thanks.

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    • Carol, I’m sure you were a MAGNIFICENT… umm… flagger? Flaggerette? Madame Flagger? Madame No-tenor-drummette for Her? Color guard, right? πŸ˜‰

      Yes! The DCI competitions are amazing! Have been for decades! One year I remember us watching a competition and in one portion of their fantastic show their drumline—of about 10-12 snares—came up front and center, in a straight line left-to-right, did some of the usual visual affects one might see in many performances, BUT… BUT Carol… in THIS one show I had never seen it done then (1980?) or since!!! What was it they did that blew my mind? 🀯

      The snares began passing one stick to the snare next to them, and so on and so on. But Carol, here’s the mind-blowing part: when a stick reached the END of the entire line of snares, that drummer THREW the stick in the air, over all the drummers in between, BACK DOWN to the other end. And this “circle and visual of moving sticks,” drum to drum while one flew over all of them to the drummer on the end… and HE’D CATCH IT (near his head), keep playing like all the rest of them, and keep passing a stick down! So for what seemed like 5-mins of a stick after stick after stick flying threw the air, caught, and the snares never missed a beat while all this stick movement went on was utterly jaw-dropping!!! 🀯

      Carol, I have never been so amazed at a drumline’s precision like that. Not anywhere, never! I still get goose-bumps remembering it. Wow. ❀️ Can you imagine the countless hours practicing that!???

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        • Hah! Busted! For the last 2-hours, off & on, I’ve been frantically searching for ANY video of what I saw. Found a discussion forum on Drum Corps Planet of “Favorite Drumline Visuals” of a guy talking about exactly what I watched (click following link)…

          https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/31507-favorite-drumline-visual/page/4/

          “johnnytech” says it was the 1986 Phantom Regiment Drumline. Perhaps they did it after another earlier DBC did it first. I was thinking it was the famous zany Bridgemen of the ’70’s and ’80’s who were always bold/brave to do extraordinary out of the ordinary DCI performances—a Corps ahead of its time, obviously. πŸ˜‰

          I’ll probably keep looking for video of it—cuz now I’m a Pitbull all on a tasty bone. πŸ˜„

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          • That is crazy! I can’t be sure of the year but my husband and I saw Phantom Regiment sometime in the mid 80s. When I asked him if he remembered such a move earlier this evening, he said he remembered seeing it and thought possibly at a show we went to in the mid 80s. I’m sure that was the show PR was in. I’m a little freaked out to be honest. Ha!

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          • I couldn’t leave it there and did more searching. The show we saw was in Ypsilanti, MI. The Phantom Regiment did not perform there in β€˜86 but they did in β€˜87. Perhaps we saw the same trick? Can’t be sure but fun to chat with another band geek. By the way, when I was in band we called ourselves band fags. The term had initially been used as a slur so we embraced it and took the wind out of those sails. We called members of the flag corps flagots.

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        • Carol, the other week my girlfriend (from Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China) and I briefly talked about how amazed I was by the 2,008 individual Peking drummers moving, playing as one…

          Then for a more unconventional, UNtraditional form of beating out a beat with anything lying around… you have…

          What is so cool Carol is that humankind has been beating out a rhythmic dance like these for many millenia across all the continents of the world. It is the circadian cycle/beats of our planet, solar system, and undoubtedly our Universe. πŸ™‚

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