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Thread: Laura Lineberger - Army Band

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    Laura Lineberger - Army Band

    Here is a nice mini-documentary video featuring Laura Lineberger. She talks about playing in the Army Band, the former Army Brass Band, and being the head librarian for the Band. She also talks about "boy instruments" and "girl instruments" perceptions and how important it is to change those. (I was reminded of my first year in high school, which then was 10th grade, and the "girl" principal player in our section, who was quite good!)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o03-JvipEIA

    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
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  2. #2
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    Very interesting video. I'll have to share that with a clarinet player who plays with us now who played in "Pershing's Own" several years ago. Impressive looking library too.
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  3. #3
    Nice video. My old stomping grounds. When I was there, females were rare (1971-76), but started entering the band before I left. Now it is pretty common. I had a couple girl section mates on euphonium when in high school (60's) and that was also pretty rare then. Nice to see the bands now with many of both genders. I have seen some really good female trombone players in the past 20 years, many in some of the big name brand symphony orchestras. Good for them!! For some reason, I find really good female trombone players a bit intimidating. Maybe that is because I don't (make that used to not) think/know they could be that good!! Shame on me. Good for them!!
    John Morgan
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    Quote Originally Posted by davewerden View Post
    Here is a nice mini-documentary video featuring Laura Lineberger. She talks about playing in the Army Band, the former Army Brass Band, and being the head librarian for the Band. She also talks about "boy instruments" and "girl instruments" perceptions and how important it is to change those. (I was reminded of my first year in high school, which then was 10th grade, and the "girl" principal player in our section, who was quite good!)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o03-JvipEIA

    She had an interesting comment about her change in attitude playing in the army band from "I get to play the euphonium, yeah!" to "I get to serve my country. I get to wear this uniform." I wonder if that paralleled your experience playing in the Coast Guard band.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by massmanute View Post
    She had an interesting comment about her change in attitude playing in the army band from "I get to play the euphonium, yeah!" to "I get to serve my country. I get to wear this uniform." I wonder if that paralleled your experience playing in the Coast Guard band.
    Oh, absolutely! Coming from Iowa, I didn't know a lot about the Coast Guard. A high school / college classmate got into the CG Band, and that is the only way I knew about the gig. I graduated in 1970 and was likely to be drafted. I wanted to fulfill my military obligation by doing something I was actually good at (I knew I was NOT athletic by anyone's definition), so I sent tapes to the U.S. Army and U.S. Coast Guard bands. My preference was the CG simply because I didn't want to be in Washington, D.C. - too big for my taste!

    I had majored in music education and fully intended to serve 4 years and then go find a teaching job. But the first step in my change from a dumb college kid (not IQ, but just dumb about life) was learning that playing in a military band was more satisfying for a euphonium player than playing in a college band. I re-enlisted. It was probably during my second hitch that I actually started "hearing" some of the speeches we sat through at various ceremonies. For one thing, I got to hear vets from WWI, WWII, Korea, and Viet Nam - THAT was an education! It made me realize the importance of our military and our country.

    Also along the way, we did several ceremonies that recognized valor of USCG personnel. I became more and more aware of the incredible job these folks do! There is some routine work, of course, but lots of stuff that is very intense. Chasing down drug smugglers and boarding their vessels, for one thing, sounds a bit scary. Some of those smugglers are not very polite! But it was the stories of the different lifesaving missions that made me really proud of the service. If you have ever seen the movie "The Guardian" (with Kevin Costner) you would have some idea of the lifesaving work and amazing skill involved. That movie is a little "Hollywood" of course, but mostly it does a very good job of showing the training and perseverance required of the rescue swimmers. I also became aware of the dangers and skills of the pilots who "get" to hover their aircraft near a ship in stormy seas, when the masts and high-up wires are flailing about, facilitate lowering or dropping rescue swimmers down, hoisting folks back on the helo, and sometimes moving right on to the next 2 or 3 missions without returning to base. My understanding is that such piloting can be quite physically taxing in addition to dangerous. Stuff like that.

    In addition to the input of these ceremonies, etc., it became easier over the years to appreciate the military in general. As we went from services that were filled with draftees to services that were volunteer, the professionalism improved greatly in day-to-day operations. Many draftees served with great honor and valor, and I don't have direct experience with combat or life-risking operations. But just looking at how the Academy worked (and other bases we visited) was interesting. We've all seen clerks in stores that don't seem to care about their jobs or their customers, but they put in their time. There was some of that in the administrative offices at the Academy for my first years. But as the volunteers began "taking over" things got much better.

    So, yeah, being in that gig made me appreciate our country and our USCG in ways I never imagined. I probably never would have entered the service if it were not for the draft - that just was not in my nature and my family didn't have much military history. In hindsight, I'm pretty sure I would have crashed as a band director, given the life experience and direction I would not have had to rely on. For this geeky "kid" the draft actually did me a favor.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
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