The Evolution of Drum Corps Drumming

'% Brief History of Rudimental Drumming in America from the Music of the Continental Army to the Modern Junior Drum and Bugle Corps"
Dan C. Spalding

Dan C. Spaldinghas instructedand arranged for the Chicago Cavaliers,the Spiritof Atlanta, the OffensiveLionsof Jonquiere,Quebec,and many other corps in the United States and Canada. He holds the B.M.E.and M.M. from Northwestern University School of Music where he studied percussion under Terry Applebaum and Glenn Steele. He hasservedas Percussioninstructorand AssistantDirectorof Bandsat Westernlllinois University,Percussion Instructor and Director of the Marching Band at the Universityof Tennesseeat Chattanooga, and as Timpanist and Principal Percussionist with the Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra and Opera Association. He also has several major compositionsto hiscredit, is activeasan adjudicator, and is a clinician for the Slingerland Drum Company. It was over 200 years ago in the early dawn of April 19, 1775, that teenage drummer William Diamond and fifer Jonathan Herrington led their unit into battle at Lexington with a lively tune named for an emblem of the revolution, The White Cockade. One militiaman noted in his diary, "We marched before them with our d rums and fifes agoing...We had grand music. ''I From this famous morning until today the drum has been an important element in American military life and it is from this heritage that the p h e n o m e n o n of the American drum and bugle corps eventually evolved. 116

The use of drums to signal troops did not, of course, originate in the American colonies but can be traced back at least as far as the eleventh century. Before this time the armies of Western Europe generally used trumpets and horns as the chief signaling devices but the European armies were probably influenced by the much wider instrumentation of the Saracen army during the Crusades. The Saracen army fielded bands which included trumpet, horn, reed pipe, shawn, drum (tabl), kettledrum (naqquara), cymbals (sunuj) and bells (jalajil)2 It is the famous Swiss Infantry, though, that is accredited with first using the drum and fife to give troop signals. The records of the city of Basle indicate an association of fife and drum as early as 1332 and was spread throughout Europe with the Swiss M e r c e n a r y Regiments beginning in the sixteenth century) Although the use of kettledrums and trumpets for signaling purposes came into favor in the fifteenth century, especially with cavalry units, the side drum continued to be used with infantry until the advent of modern communication.

1777 to his troops in Boston: The Honorable House of Representatives having represented that the frequent Drumming around and near the Court House greatly interrupts the Debatesof the Assembly. commanders throughout the newly formed Continental Army attempted to standardize and improve the drum and fife corps by organizing daily practice sessions and appointing drum majors for instructional duties. The 'flam'. 7 As the first year of the war got under way. that the roll was probably invented by the Swiss in the thirteenth or fourteenth century. The Manual Exercise as Ordered by His Majesty in 1764was used as the basis for the colonial forces at the beginning of the war. Probably the spirit of competition between groups of drums and bugles can be traced as far back as the battles of Marignano (1515) and Pavia (1525). Historian Raoul Camus has discovered this order from General William Heath given on May 29th. although executing such a rudiment on the large and poorly tensioned drums of that period must have been exceedingly difficult. it is expected that the drum and fife Majors exert themselves to improve it. It seems safe to assume. Connecticut also specified that if the company contained more than one hundred men. that what does survive are some compositions and signals for the field drum by the famous French composers Jean Baptiste Lully and the Brothers Philidor dating from 1705. General George Washington apparently felt that more w o r k was n e e d e d when he commented in 1777 that "the music of the army being in general very bad. ''8 Practicing the drums it seems was sometimes as much of a problem two centuries ago as it is today. who were considered elite troops. and their extraordinary pay taken from them. The mercenary troops of Austrian emperor Karl V and of the French king Francois I each had large bands of trumpets and kettledrums and the competition between these instrumentalists became as fierce and famous as that of the soldiers bearing weapons. 6 When the American militia was activated in 1775 it was naturally modeled after the British. the General therefore bids any Beating of Drums during the sitting of the Council or Houseof Representatives[except 117 . 'diddle'. three drummers and three fifers were to be used. 'roofe'. and the 'rowle' are all mentioned in the Academy of Armoury by Randle Holme III written before 1688. or they will be reduced. The Americans usually authorized the use of both fife and drum for every company with Virginia authorizing one drum and fife per company and Connecticut two drums and fifes. however. and regulations authorized the use of two drummers per company plus two fifes for the grenadiers. It is interesting to note. The art of beating the drum was passed down from generation to generation through the techniques of rote learning which is the principal reason why few musical records exist before the nineteenth century. 'dragge'.4 Before the Orcheso~raphie. however. musical notations for the military drum are non-existent.Just when or where the rudiments of the drum were invented is open to speculation. s By the outbreak of the American Revolution the use of the drum with u n i t s of i n f a n t r y was firmly established t h r o u g h o u t all the European armies and had been so for several centuries.and desirethat a stop may be put thereto. and the use of the flam is implied in Aubeau's Orchesographie of 1581.

118 .9 The fife major referred to in the order was Lieutenant John Hiwell. as he was responsible not only for beating out the correct signals during the battle. but were considerably smaller than the two foot by two foot drums which were in general use two centuries earlier. produced a sound which was audible even among the guns of battle. no American sources from the revolutionary period which contain both the beat patterns and the fife tunes. is Although the bass drum is an important part of the modern drum and fife corps like the one at Williamsburg. The beatings which accompanied the tunes played by the fifes were fashioned out of a series of complicated musical patterns devised for the 'eurythmics' of stroking a dtum with some pre-determined sense of order. and ratamacue" which express phonetically what the rudiment sounds like as it is played with a rhythmic stroking from eight to left in each arm. or between the Old Brick Meeting House. and poing stroke. This was known as the camp duty and every private soldier was expected to "acquaint himself with the usual beats and signals of the drum. there is no verification of its use in the Continental army. but unfortunately it contains no musical notation and no instructions for the fife. paradiddle. Virginia. who in 1778 would be appointed inspector and superintendent of music to assist von Steuben in establishing throughout the army a uniform method of playing the drum beats and fife tunes. The instrument was strung with heavy gut snares and these." There are twenty-six of them." Von Steuben lists nine beats and twelve signals and mentions the rudiments to be played such as the stroke. and the Town Pump in the Main Street. drag. combined with the thick heads and heavy sticks of the period. these must be c o n s t r u c t e d from • contemporaneous European sources and the American sources written shortly after the war.14 The drums of the revolutionary period were several inches larger than the drums in use today. but whattheylearned in the campsof the ContinentalArmy hasnot changed indeed to the present day. 1779. in fact.10 The methods of musical instruction for drummers in particular must have been those of rote learning. These rhythmic patterns handed down to us from Revolutionary times are called the "Rudimentsof Drumming. where he managed to pass himself off as a baron and a lieutenant general from the Prussian king's own personal s t a f f . The bass drum first appeared in the band of music near Discipline of the Troops of the United States that an entire chapter can be found on the drummer and his duties. Fife Major Hywill will fix a parade for the Musick of Colo. 13There are. flam. Crane's Battalion. This manual clearly shows the important role of the drummer in the Continental Army.on some special occasions] (either for practicing or on Duty). and instantly obey them. Above the Coffee House in Congress Street. arrived at Valley Forge in 1778. roll. After his appointment he required the Drum Majors and fife Majors to report daily for instruction in their duties. ~2 G e n e r a l Washington immediately put him in charge of the training of the troops and it is in his book Regulations for the Order and This was eventually adopted by the Congress on March 19. but also regulating the soldier's day by indicating the passage of time as well as the action that was expected of him. captain Fredrich von Steuben. ruff. as the official manual for the American forces. somewhere with the before mentioned limits. their colorful terminology including such titles as "flare.~1 Prussian soldier of fortune.

but without dancing along. John Adams signed a bill on July 11. a Officers Calls.17 type of musical organization that can trace its roots directly to the U. 16 instruments of percussion has While massings of all the fifers and remained an i n t e g r a l and drummers of the army were probably indispensible part of the military not frequent there is evidence that band to this day. Ashworth also lists twentydrums as well as the other percussion eight rudiments. and wind bands in the United States. the m e t h o d .position of "legitamacy" as a musical the end of the century as part of the instrument. Signals. Ashworth method. performance of the drum rudiments. When Commandant William the United States Army and Navy. When the armed forces book was called A New. Troop. The first President Adams. Considering the archaic instruments Army Drum. 1798. do at all with the development of that the men may step to it with ease. before marching through It should be pointed out. but with such moderation. the Drum Rudiments as set down by the drum was finally elevated to a N. Philadelphia in a brave show of force: that the roots of the modern drum The drums and fifes of eachbrigadeareto be collected in the center of it. over 100 years later. TM When this band rudiment to be learned is the double and others incorporated the snare stroke roll. One of the tunes appearing in the *Instruments associatedwith the bodyguardof the Turkish sultan which included triangle. the forerunner of the famous Marine intended Particularly for the Use of Band. Ashworth. bassdrum. and a tune for the and bugle corps do not have much to quick step played. who was conductor of the With the treaty of peace in 1783. 119 . and 32 drummers and Whole of the Camp Duty as Practised fifers. including the Reveille. Fife. of t h e p e r c u s s i o n i s t s h a v e General Washington issued the undoubtedly been skilled in the following order on August 23. and the vast majority this did occur from time to time. Washington City.A. and cresent. however. the dissolved. Salutes and the Fife Major. that authorized a Drum Major. This organization is considered at Headquarters. Published in 1812. and one that has cymbals.R.S. Useful and were gradually reorganized President Complete System of Drum Beating. is The prompted the term. Their use in held considerable eminence among the bands and orchestras of this period drummers for many years. Janissary* section and was not part of The use of the drum and other the field music during this period. the United States Marine Band from 1804 Continental army was almost totally until 1816.D. The first instructions request was granted in 1800 by concern proper stick hold. or totally disregarding developed as a completely different the music. 1777. and the probably not too skillful O n e of t h e earliest drum performers the resultant sound must instruction books printed in America have been one of incredible volume was written by Charles Stewart but dubious precision. and Bugle Corps. Turkish music.19 Burrows asked the Secretary of the The format followed in many of the Navy for the Corps to be allowed to modern rudimental methods is much have a band instead of musicallythe same as that of the Ashworth restricted fifers and drummers. as too often has been the case. twenty-six of which instruments associated with the make up the Standard American Janissary in their instrumentation.

and rendering it better adapted to the modern style of Drum Music. The Scotch. The Bruce and Emmett uses standard musical notation. and the Scotch Repeat. some 40. and Emmett was a fifer and composer of the famous tune Dixie. or Martial Musician by J. and this author continues to use The Three Camps extensively in his drum teachings.000 eager boys enlisted as drummers and fifers. 22 The military band was also much in favor at this time and many of the Union regiments had complete bands. adding to it the results of his own knowledge and experience. and decelerate to the original tempo.21 With the coming of the Civil War.24 Although the minimum age for draft in the Federal Army was 18. however. He has therefore adopted Ashworth's system. rudimental drumming reached a high point in that century. This comes as no surprise since the author states in the preface: After carefully examining all the Drum books that have been published during the past twenty-five years. namely. Moreover. Bruce and Dan D. Between the initial performance and the repeat at the end of the ceremony several other beatings were played.Three Camps." which has. The Ashworth method probably served as the basic guide to drummers and fifers of the military throughout the War of 1812. the Mexican War of 1848. The Drum and Fife Instructor by Charles Robbins of 1812. New York. Other drum and fife guides from this period include the Instructor in Martial Music by Daniel Hazeltine of 1810. to tend to the wounded in battle. Governor's Island. Emmett. however. the drum and fife corps offered the only dependable source of music in many of the regiments because of the use of bandsmen on the firing line. the reveille ceremony always began and ended with The Three Camps. Many of the same tunes such as The Three Camps and . Holton of 1817. whereas the Ashworth method does not. some 300 boys of age 13 or less were actually accepted and enlisted.26 An examination of the Bruce and Emmett shows that it is similar to Ashworth. which was published in 1862. The Austrian. as was customary. By 1862. L. and The Drummer's Assistant by Levi Lovering of 1819. The Drummer's Instructor. 27 Some of the differences that do occur concern mainly notation. During the lonely nights they stood atthe head of a camp street and tapped out the beat which gave "Taps" its name. The Hessian. the fast moving artillery units and swift cavalry tactics brought on the development of the bugle. Bruce was principal drum instructor at the school of practice. and up to the Civil War in 1861. accelerate to a reasonable speed (close).So The Three Camps is similar to the one that we play today. by George B. Although the fife continued in use. They also took chores such as barbering 120 and burying the dead. A c c o r d i n g to Ashworth. which eventually replaced the fife as the chief accompaning instrument for the drum. Rumville and H.2s The first important method book to appear during the latter part of the century was The Drummer's and Fifers Guide.23 Drummers continued to sound daily camp calls and. the author finds none to compare with "Ashworth's Rudimental School. which he has himself taught. each rudiment containing a double stroke should be played slowly at first (open). Bruce recommends thatthe roll have an accent on the second beat and that furthermore. In addition. long been out of print.

In the book. 3° Because of the official adoption by the Army. the Strube book did not get into private circulation. having been born and raised in the same neighborhood as Sousa's in Washington. the Downfall of Paris is definitely English in origin and was a favorite of the British troops fighting on the Continent during the early Napoleanic campaigns -28 The Bruce and Emmett book. an event which continues to this day by an organization which is the oldest of its kind. Partici pants in these organizations are often direct descendants of the original drummers and fifers from the Revolutionary War. It differs from the Bruce and Emmett by not requiring the student to decelerate the rudiments once they are up to speed. 29 The next book to appear was the System of Instruction for the Drum and Fife." by the War Department. John Phillip Sousa published his book entitled The Trumpet and Drum. and in 1872 there is a written account of a field competition) 4 That same year also marked the first annual Muster of the Ancient Fifers and Drummers of C o n n e c t i c u t . Mr.. Marine Corps and a close friend of Sousa's. by Gardner A. The Trumpet and Drum followed the format of the earlier books for drum and fife except that the melodies were rewritten to fit the peculiarities of the bugle. Drum and bugle corps were being utilized in large music festivals such as those held in New Orleans and Boston. It was first published in 1889 by John Church and Co. This organization and others of similar nature which are devoted to the preservation of the musical traditions from revolutionary times were later to have an important impact on the drum and bugle corps in the early twentieth century. published by Pond and Co. Strube. On April 17th.. Strube's System was "adopted for the instruction of the Infantry of the Army of the United States. and is still in print today) 3 It was in the later part of the nineteenth century and the early years of the twentieth that drum and bugle corps began to appear outside the military. in fact. received wide distribution throughout the United States both during and after the Civil War. and was. Frank Lusby was Drum Instructor for the U. continuing the 121 . but was used extensively in the New England area. In addition. With the emphasis changed to the drum and bugle corps there became a need for a new method book and in 1886. although there are also new tunes such as The Downfall of Paris and Dixie.The Austrian are found in both of the above mentioned books. As with much of the American camp duty and traditional beats. Sousa acknowledges F.S. the bugle replaced the fife as the accompanying instrument. Another book which was well a c c e p t e d a m o n g non-service drummers. He enlisted in 1861 as a snare drummer and served for 28 years. the only authentic rudimental instructor available for many years.a2 Essentially. there is no accent on the second beat of the roll) 1 As mentioned earlier. W. Lusby for his contributions to his book. starting in the Civil War and accelerating in the last quarter of the nineteenth century. but which was rudimental in approach was The Imperial Method of Drumming by Harry Bauer. although it was not officially adopted. 1869. and for the Observance of the Militia of the United States. This book was soon used as a guide to all service drummers.

age old traditions of passing the art of rudimental drumming from generation to generation. The false notion was conceived thru rudimental drummers alwaysdoing this work. but THEY WERETHE ONLY ONESWHO COULD DO IT. however. It demands the highest degree of ability in execution and its perfection and historical associationsmake it classic)a In 1921 the American Legion began holding drum and bugle corps contests on a national scale which included contests in individual drumming. Ludwig Sr.36 One of Mr. accents and phrasings indicated.3S The military band movement was very popular in America between the Civil War and World War I and William F.andwhenaccompanied by the fife or pipes is surpassing for spirit and the lesseningof fatigueto the marchingcolumn. Because of discrepancies between the two standard drum books. Before leaving the military history of r u d i m e n t a l d r u m m i n g . This discrepancy eventually led to the formation of the National Association . With the advent of modern communication techniques. the use of the drum to give battle signals was over and even the camp duty was eventually relegated to the solo bugle. The camp and field music is an arrangement of the rudiments in a mannereffectiveand pleasing 122 to the ear.The drummer of the ensemble uses the rudiments to scientifically render the taps. The Veterans of Foreign Wars also started a national contest in 1928 and these events really mark the beginning of the modern drum and bugle corps movement in America. through sheer force of numbers. Ludwig's favorite stories related how Sousa always required a good command of rudimental technique before one could even be considered for a position with Sousa'sband as a percussionist. It is the junior corps. Moeller who was one of the principal teachers of the great Gene Krupa. attributes the John Phillip Sousa Band with being especially important in regard to promoting rudimental drumming during this period. The difficult quickstepsand the armyduty are the highestclassof drumming. Initially these groups were made up of veterans from each particular sponsoring post and it wasn't until 1936 and 1937 respectively. The Bruce and Emmett required an accent on the second beat of the roll while starting and also required a deceleration of the roll once the maximum speed had been reached.37 This is from his book TheArt of Snare Drumming. 39 One of the requirements for the contest in individual drumming (and one which is still required under today's rules) was the performance of the long roll. The use of the drum was retained for ceremonial purposes. the Bruce and Emmett and the Strube. was being performed with a lack of uniformity and there evolved a great deal of controversy as to how these contests should be judged. it is appropriate to quote Sanford A. and the military drum in today's armed forces retains a very special and important place. among other rudiments. theybring the drum from the position of metronomic accompanist to that of solo instrument. first published in 1925: The most ridiculous idea regarding drumming is that the rudiments were made to play quickstepson the streetand the army duty. that the V. and the American Legion added a j u n i o r d i v i s i o n to accommodate the sons of these World War I veterans. This is exactly backwards.F. that would eventually dominate the activity on a national scale. the roll.W. Strube did not advocate either of these techniques.

open and closed. two bass drums. Mr.A. who was one of the those sponsored by the veterans founders of the N. and cymbal parts added. There Opera House and Percussionist with were a great many classifications such the Boston Festival Orchestra. We divided Much more will be said about the the 26 rudiments into two sections by development of instrumentation and selecting what we termed at the time the arranging techniques later. 42 marching drum corps of the same period. who was himself a patterns as found in earlier method 123 . roll. however. did not do any marching and Stone was Timpanist at the Boston also included the ancient fifes. which was organized by William F. Some of the beatings herein are original--many at 120 beats per minute. This is the same instrumentation that would prevail into the 1960's. Ludwig gives some of the details: books but with simple tenor drum. New York. 41 as fife drum and bugle. in the forward the author states: solo bugle. unlike Lawrence Stone. At this famous meeting.D. were performed at 110 beats drummers for drum beatings. was much to meet "originally and flash" and other modern contest requirements. widespread demand from drum corps ancient. there are stick beats. written along per minute. which traditional rudimental lines. thirteen leading percussionists from around the country adopted the Twenty-six Standard American Drum Rudiments. groups.. by George corps.R. such as rudimental d r u m m i n g which is the the highly regarded Charles T. But we felt that we had saved the drum rudiments by adopting a practical set demands plus the small number of of rudiments without deviation from any of horn players probably helped reduce the then recognized and established the standard size to nine players in methods. Increased technical morning.A. three tenors. that the standard number of players became the famous three snares. Earl Sturtze. appeared in states of New York and Connecticut a the 1931 book M ilitary Drum Beats for large number of standstill drum the Drum Corps. Ludwig and the Ludwig Drum Company. and one cymbal.D. It was not until the early years of the 1950's. but first thirteen essential that each applicant had to we will continue to examine the play as a test for membership into the important developments concerning National Association of Rudimental Drummers. and these This booklet is written in answer to a were further divided into two groups. prepared Brooklyn. 40 the corps drummer's approach to the snare drum. We talked four or five bass drums and four or and played rudiments six hourswell into that five cymbals. During the 1930's and 40's the drumlines often marched as many as eight or nine snares with I will never forget that evening. These competing corps. We also retained lesson #25 of the Strube method. etc.R. For a time. This was partly due to the An examination of the contents activities of a master teacher from that reveals the same basic rudimental era. drum and fife. Fife and Bugle Corps from addition. etc. yet scored for performed essentially the same music modern drum corps instrumentation. in Drum. and modern. We retained the Bruce and Emmett the early 1950's. bass drum. Twenty-five of the rudiments In the 1930's there flourished in the adopted by the N. 1933 at the American Legion National Convention in Chicago. The quality of are not--but they carry the impress of the drumming is these groups. solo drum. not so fully superior to the drumming in the recognized in the past. Kirk foundation of the prize-winning corps.of Rudimental Drummers on June 20th.

especially with the Chicago Cavaliers. Although the St.44 The instructor who was really responsible for the development of 124 this new approach was Les Parks. by the end of the decade. played not only fast. Frank's lines. the Pennsylvaniaversus New Jersey style.championship snare drummer from the early thirties. Theft in 1971. Therefore various styles of drumming began to appearthroughout the Eastas for example. On the east coast. Incidentally. not individual power. This influx of instructors from the standstill corps is one of the principal reasons why drum and bugle corps from the Northeastern United States dominated the activity until the 1960's.execution had become more difficult in the open style manner. Vincent's Cadets of Bayonne. however. but the line's volume was d e p e n d e n t upon numbers. was still a rarity. as proven by the drum scoresthe sections in the New Jersey area were achieving. all around uniformity of hand position and arm movement. startled the drumming community by winning four national championship drum awards by using a low. This set the stage for snare lines in the1970's. New Jersey. open. especially . fielding more than this number. Based on the old Eastern style of high sticking. and high. under the tultelage of master teacher Bobby Thompson. 43 In the mid-nineteen fifties. wrist oriented style. In the late thirties and early forties it was Earl Sturtze students such as Bob Redican. set the model for style development in the junior corps until the 1970's. began a tradition of high quality snare drumming in a unique but similar style which served consistantly as a national standard until the corps folded in 1972. John Flowers put forth these observations: Several instructors found that due to the increasing difficulty of their repertoire and the faster marching cadence. but by fielding an unprecedented eight snare drummers. who achieved some success with the St. Delaware. and Frank Arsenau It that set a high standard of quality that would influence rudimental drumming for years to come. utilizing more wrist control.4S This revived "New Jersey" type style made the line clean and precise. by using a unique arm movement. but were able to execute cleanly as well. The drumming style at this time was basically the same that had been passed down from the ancient drummers. the Blue Rocks of Wilmington. It was around this time thata " n e w " type of drumming style was being developed in the Mid-West by Frank Arsenault. Hugh Quigly. but a more precise and well executed sound had taken its place. New Jersey. It was also about this time that drummers from the standstill corps began to instruct the marching corps and upgrade the quality of the drumming to a high degree. This was to attack the rudiments from a great height by using a great deal of arm movement and this in turn produced a powerful sound and created an air of showmanship. The big powerful sound had gone. it is probably Frank Arsenault's move to Chicago in 1954 that had more to do with the spread of high quality rudimental drumming throughout the continental United States than any other single factor. Kevins Emerald Knights marched four snares and four tenors as early as 1960. His success. The open style had still prevailed in the Pennsylvaniaarea. the Blessed Sacrament Golden Knights of Newark.whereas the New Jersey area stressed drumming closer to the drum.

and concert style buzz rolls. The use of matched grip was slow to catch on in drum and bugle corps.) began arranging percussion parts which did not rely solely on the twenty-six standard drum r u d i m e n t s . the most common approach to the tenor drum was to use hard felt mallets with matched grip and support the snare parts. The traditional rudiments are highly adaptable to music of all types.Ljsually without attempting double stroke rolls or flams. however. In the early 1950's some units used sheepskin sticks on the tenor drums and twirled these sticks by leather thongs wrapped around the players' fingers. rudiments of Scotch or Swissancestory. (who has been a highly regarded musician in the activity for several decades. percussion a r r a n g e r s have increasingly borrowed rhythmic patterns which are indigenous to the style of music being performed rather than attempting to always fit the rudiments into musical genres for which they were not designed. The development of the modern drum corps instrumentation is in itself quite interesting but it cannot be understood fully without discussing the function of each particular instrument or section. Except for the practice of a handful of drum instructors. The emphasis was clearly on the snare segment with the other voices acting in a subsidiary fashion with only an occasional moment of rhythmic counterpoint between the snare and tenor voices. the sizes of these instruments were also fairly standard with a typical drumline using 12" x 15" leg drums. two straight bass drums and one pair of cymbals. Before proceeding.those from California which used variations of the low style to its best advantage. Along with this. President and founder 125 . The bass drums acted almost exclusively as a time keeper and the cymbals often played in unison with the bass. has resulted in snare lines' attempting more dynamic range. Some Corps even marched as many as fourteen snares by the end of the decade. . Ever since the mid 50's when Eric Perrilloux. rhythms of latin influence. however. As stated earlier. that holds the drum off the leg. Before continuing into the development of instrumentation. and when combined with these varying styles of music the results have often been more interesting and exciting than the original source. it should be noted that probably the most significant development in equipment occurred in 1957 when the Ludwig Drum Company first developed the plastic drum head. a word should be said about the changes in what has been played as well as how it has been played. and 14" to 16" cymbals. In general. that awards more credit for playing with increased range and general overall musicianship. three tenor drums. but since the Santa Clara Vanguard won in 1978 using the matched grip. It is to be hoped this trend will continue in the1980's. 14" x 28" bass drums. Don Warren. many corps are replacing the traditional strap for a harness. many corps have begun to convert. this approach became almost universal by the midseventies. A rule change in 1978. Snare drummers in today's corps are often called upon to perform patterns involving jazz or rock independence. 40 By the end of the decade. the standard drumline for both junior and senior drum corps in the 1950's consisted of three snare drums. h o w e v e r .

1961 and 1962proved to be the last daysfor the nine-man drumline for a major Because of junior drum corps' corps. Most corps kept the rhythmic patterns which were not rudimental bass drums to be used in directly lifted from the 26 Standard conjunction with the "tuned" basses. since then Ludwig has sold a lot of plastic drum heads. were directly responsible for the Cavaliers first National V. were developments in senior corps which b e g i n n i n g to present some would later have an impact on the exceedingly interesting junior. One of the early pioneers in arrangements by using two this respect was Eric Perrilloux. but the rudimental bass eventually 126 of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps of Chicago. The Reilly Raiders being a different size and pitch were also the first corps to present a spread quickly throughout the other drum solo to the front of the field. however. the Miami weather was quite damp that particular night and the Cavaliers possessed the only drums which sounded like much of anything. . which only the Cavaliers possessed due to the fact that their instructor. drummers of the day but also by the Markovich. only by the great rudimental It was a young Mitchel K. use corps. with developments in the junior especially Larry McCormick in the drum and bugle corps movement. Returning to the junior corps. title. Perrilloux was influenced not snares. that really great jazz artistry of Gene Krupa. Needless to say.F. The emphasis began to shift to domination in the activity today. and in possibly compete successfully general begin to adapt the rudiments without four or more "tuned" bass in a more musical manner and use drums. mid-West and Bobby Thompson and However. This. and later the addition of bongos and conga drums. Frank Arsenault. He started the ball rolling with the was the first to introduce the double concept of "tuned" bass drums by stick (rudimental) bass drum in 1956 presenting his ideas with the 1965 w i t h the Reilly Raiders of Royal Airs of Chicago and also writing Philadelphia. and to this day no drumline can rolls on the bass drums. a rudimental bass drums of different former champion in the Gene Krupa pitch and by giving the tenor and bass national drum contests from the voices more equal status with the 1940's. 47 This is the first known instance of the use of multiple drums in American drum and bugle corps and they would not be used in the juniors until 1967. this the bass drums in 1963.48This concept of expanding the Knights used a pair of rudimental bass bass line in numbers with each drum drums in 1962.Another important development was the addition of timbales to the Hawthorne Caballeros drumline by Les Parks in 1961.W. and by 1964 article has dealt almost exclusively the leading arrangers of the time. Apparently. American Drum Rudiments. there are some early Jerry Shellmer in the East. an innovation that an article for the Spring issue of the wouldn't catch on in the junior corps "Ludwig Drummer" that same until the Blessed Sacrament Golden year. was also an employee of the Ludwig Drum Company. of course. still contends that the plastic headed drums. w o u l d open up some new o p p o r t u n i t i e s in percussion arranging techniques.

Sr. one minute in length and clearly conveyed some logical musical William F. Ludwig. seconds. because too often the timpani. 49 give the bugles harmonic as well as rhythmic support and can be Two notable exceptions to this attributed to Jerry Shellmer and the were the Royal Airs of Chicago and Boston Crusaders. was much more diplomatic in his observations about development. Some lines spectacular results. If I were to offer a suggestion. passages for just the timpani alone. but also winter that AI LeMert and Jim Sewrey used two sets of giant sized timp-tom developed the marching timpani and trios besides sections of timpani and the timp-tom trio for the Ludwig "tuned" basses. than written.which set a fine marched a double bass drum with precedent for future timpani lines to single headswhich were tuned to A build upon. and Indianapolis where percussion some corps chose to do both. Drum Company. which not pushed through the legalization of only marched a section of timp-tom timpani. the tonic and dominant of the The use of the single headed multimost common key of the bugles.. 1970's. It was during the following trios in place of the tenors. Obviously the arrangers were displaythat seldom made any musical seeking different effects and that's why the sense or lasted for more than thirty drummers sometimes played towards the center of the kettle--the node or dead spot.. by the 1971 and 1972 began w i t h a flurry of seasons. The use of timpani in these early 1966 saw another landmark development when the Cavaliers days was extremely poor as most of the drum instructors at that time had presented a solo which approached no formal training in percussion. Today's percussion feature Timpani should really be used more for as we know it in the modern drum concert interpretation. but they and others played out towards the rim which often consisted of only a short flurry is the most accepted area to play for proper of rhythmic activity and technical timpani tone. replaced the single tenor with double This set the stage for the 1967 or triple toms but did not augment American Legion Rules Congressin that section with specialty drums.were played in The next year of competition unison with the bass and tenor drums and brought the first successfulattemptto thus were overshadowed by them. toms went through a great deal of (Bugles sound a perfect 4th lower experimentation during these years. the the 1968 Nationals: percussion lines were presenting Some timpanists played towards the center their solos to the stands. I would this early composition by Larry say that arrangers should provide more solo McCormick. percussion instrumentation experimentation in instrumentation began to stabilize into a pattern and arranging techniques which 127 . such as instructors from all over the country the Racine Kilties of 1969. and the 1968season Eventually.) They were used very Some corps chose to keep the single much like timpani and when coupled tenors and augment the line with with the excellent playing of the rest various combinations of double bass of the drumline it produced some drums and timp-tom trios.didn't really begin to subside until passed from the scene in the early around 1972. D. Prior to this time..than as tenor corps can clearly be traced back to drums. and E.. The Crusaders the Boston Crusaders.

carrying more than three drums per player. they may realize the heritage which they must uphold. increased numbers of "tuned" basses. drums with scoops and cutaway shells. snares. 1977. corps instructors will continue to be innovative in their choices of instrumentation and creative in their scoring techniques. many of whom marched as performers in the 1960's. it should be noted here that asearly as 1969 the Boston Crusaders introduced for the first time a marching vibraphone and used it to great effect. It is hoped that this article will help r u d i m e n t a l drummers better understand the evolution of the art they are trying to master. What has really developed during the last decade is a sophistication of arrangements in both quality and quantity. This pattern included five principal segments. Led by Fred Sanford of the Santa Clara Vanguard and a host of young arrangers. Spirit of Atlanta. and utilizing all sorts of exotic percussion instruments. "tuned" bassdrums. it simply added a sixth segment to the already existing ones.F. and timpani. basic segmental makeup of the percussion sections has remained the samewith the number of players usuallyexceeding thirty. but the strict rules of the V. As we enter the 1980's. the arrangers of the 70's have produced some exciting and creative percussionpresentations.which carries through to today. When keyboard instruments were finally legalized in 1974.Photo by Gordon Cagle.S0 With the legalization of all hand held percussion instruments in 1973. and an unlimited number of keyboards in the end of the decade percussion sections were basicallyfree to march anythingthey While experimentation continued with such things as rototoms. which usually numbered four.W. severalsetsof cymbalsof varying sizes. forced the corps to drop the i n s t r u m e n t for the national championship contest. and the new artistic heights for which they must constantly strive. Only through the striving for perfection in technique and musicianship can drum and bugle corps remain an interesting and vital force in the field of musical entertainment and music education.which have made the formal instrumental music education community sit up and take notice. double or triple single headed tenor drums. In that way. 128 .

Competitive Drum Corps. The Drummer's Heritage. 19 Bradley Spinny. Ludwig. pp. (New York: Frederick A. Inc. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Ludwig Sr. 37 Gene Krupa.. (Hollywood: Hollywood Percussion Club and Clinic. 1955). 56-57.. p. 1970).. System of Drum Beating. Baron Von Steuben and His Regulations. "The Outrageous Bill Mauldin and his Revolution.1950). (Boston: George B. New York: Mercury Records. 2. 100. 44. 2. Sr.. 210. 1979) p. 1... 24 Bruce Catton.. 23. 22 Frederick Fennell. p. (Library of Congress) Vol. No. Hubbard. 2. " N. 30 William F. Peters. L. 1976). S. "Annual Deep River Muster. record notes (Department of D e f e n s e . 34 ]odeen E. 1942). 1965. 1812 as reprinted in facsimile in Bradley Spinny. 1. 24-25. 17.. Inc. 1956). The Drummer's and Fifer's Guide. 2. (New York: Robbins Music. (Chicago: W.. 14 Donald Gilbert. 6 Henry George Farmer. 28 Henry George Farmer. I . History of American Music.NOTES i Elaine Oudine and Eric J. Ibid. p. Ibid. Ludwig Jr. 16. p. 1919). V No. (New York: A.. Ibid. 4. p. Praeger. iB Oudine and Berryman. 8 Raoul F. 1965 Vol.S. "Military Drumming During the American Revolution 1775-1783. 13 Baron yon Steuben. s Willi Apel. Ibid. tl Frederick Fennell. Sr. Gene Krupa Drum Method. p.. Riling. 1938).. Ibid. chap. 2. Bands and Drummer Boys of the Civil War.. Berryman. V No. 129 . 41 George Lawrence Stone. 1931). 71. D.F. as reprinted in facsimile in Joseph R. 123. Gardner. 10. "Treatise on Percussion" (Unpublished Master's Thesis. 1.1944). 45. Complete Drum Instructor. Stone and Son. ~9 ]odeen E. 369. 2s William Carter White. 1962). 17 George Washington. 34. 1944). Ludwig. Military Music of the American Revolution. 10. The American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War. Ibid. Encyclopaedia. 21 Raoul F. Military Music of the American Revolution. The Art of Snare Drumming. William F. Vol. Eastman School of Music. (Rochester. p." Percussionist. Sr. (Chicago: Ludwig Drum Co. 1967. 1966).. pp. Ibid. Ludwig. 71.p. (Des Plaines. 33 William F. Percussion Instruments and their History.152. Inc. p. (New York: Exposition Press. 18-33. 123. Moeller. Papers of George Washington. Popp. D • Bulletin 119. V. 12 Bill Mauldin. (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. 16.s A." Ludwig Drummer. p. 1. 4 ]ames Blades. (New York: by the authors. Ibid. Camus. p. "The Development of Drum Rudiments. Inc. p. p. p. Broad Stripes Bright Stars. Vll No. 10 William CarterWhite.A. Camus. Ibid.. Inc. p.." Ludwig Drummer. Lord and Arthur Wise. 15. p. 75. 1976). pt. no date given). 1965 Vol. Harvard Dictionary of Music." Ludwig Drummer. A HistoryofMilitary Music in America.. 20 Charles Stewart Ashworth. 187." Ludwig Drummer.. 2 Henry George Farmer. Franci.C. For an outstanding attempt at reconstruction see Camus. "The Development of Drum Rudiments. (Washington: by the author.. IX No. 38 Sanford A. 85. Camus. Camus. is G o r d o n B. p. 2. Barnes and Co." Smithsonian. Ludwig. lllinois: Olympic Printing. Washington. (New York: Carl Fischer. 3s William F.R. 3 James Blades. Military Drum Beats. 99. 26 W. "The Development of Drum Rudiments. p. p. p. ~i William F. Regulations for the Order and Discipline of the Troops of the United States. 4o William F. 1908). p. p. New York: Eastman School of Music. 1956). 446. 1862). British Bands in Battle. 1960). 7 Raoul F. p. (London: irving Squire Co. Limited. 42 George Lawrence Stone. p. (New York: Hinrichsen Edition. 27 George Bruce and Dan Emmett. Encyclopaedia of Percussion Instruments and Drumming. 71-72. (Rochester. p. pp. Vol.. pp. " 32 William F. 1. Navy Bicentennial Coordination Office. Sr. Ibid. Drum Co. pp." Ludwig Drummer. Camus. 212-219.. p. Ludwig. Modern Method for the Instruments of Percussion. Popp. IV. Vll No. pp. The Spirit of "76 and Ruffles and Flourishes. 1967 Vol. U.L. 45.. 114. 2. Vol. 30 Carl E. Ibid.1956).. (New York: American Heritage Publishing Co. pP. Sr. p. February 1978. (London: Max Parrish and Co. p. 9 Raoul F.. Military Music. 16 Raoul F. 52. 10.

. 1964. 1889.. 1969." Ludwig Drummer and Fifer's Guide. 2.. and Wise. 4. Music. 130 .. No.." Ludwig Drummer. Harvard Dictionary of Music. I. Mauldin. Flowers. 1965. 1. Bulletin No..D. Markovich. William F. Donald. (Indianapolis: 1967-1972}. Limited. their History. 2. The Music of the Hawthorne Caballeros. I. Military Music. p.. No. Ibid.. V." Smithsonian. 15 October 1971. 4z Richard I. 1961. Vol. Vol.. 1961).A. "Annual Deep River New York: American Heritage Inc. VII.. Vol. 1968. LeMert. British Bands in Battle. History of American Music. Carl E. 1978. 1956. Arthur. (Lynn.1967. "The Eastern Style Techniques of Rudimental Drumming. New York: Carl Fischer Inc. Vl.." Drummers.. 1973. 2. Gene Krupa Drum Method. Washington: by the author... p.. Goldman.. VIII. No. 1966. Charles Stewart. V.D. Ludwig Drummer. New York: Eastman School of Ludwig. Sr. the United States. Richard Franko. Vol. John C. Bulletin No. Gilbert. Francis A. Wash ington: by Drummer. University of North Carolina Press.. Ibid. Catton. William F. Rochester.. Krupa. 1965 Vol." Remo Percussion Topics. Flowers. Rochester. "Marching Percussion." Ludwig Drummer.F. Vol. Sanford A. I. "Historically Speaking. George Henry..D.. Lord. Regulations for Competing Musical and Drill Units." LudwiR Drummer. 115. No. William F. Beating. William F. Blake. sl The American Legion. Chicago: Ludwig Drum Co. Sr.1942. 1938. "New Concepts in Bass Drumming. Bill." Drum Corps Wodd." Percussionist.A." Techniques of Rudimental Drumming. Bulletin 121. Mercury Records. so Jodeen E. 1960-1900. "The Eastern Style Markovich. 1. 69. Moeller. New York: Drumming. Inc. 1961. Percussion. Ibid. No. London: Irving Squire Co. Ludwig. Blake. "Roto Toms for Marching Percussion. Greider.. New York: Frederick A. (Villa Park.S. Dennis.. Popp... "The Outrageous Bill Mauldin Gardner.. Raoul F. Military Music of the Drummer Boys of the Civil War. Vol.L. George Henry. "Introduction to Swiss Basle Praeger. ImperialMethod. Blades. Bruce.. p. 2.." Ludwig Drummer. Popp." Ludwig Drummer. No. Mitchel K. Illinois: 1973-1978). 3. 1967. IX. 1950. Jodeen E. Mitchel K. Sr. 1966. Complete Drum 1974.. IV No. "Rudimental Drumming in Cambridge: Harvard University Press. 1965. p.. The Music of the Hawthorne No. 44. Sr. Vol. The Wind Band. "New Concepts in Bass and Flourishes. Ludwig. 1812. Mitchel K. 1976. Farmer. Massachusetts: Fleetwood Records. Instructor. p. Regulations and Interpretations. "N.. Modern Method for and his Revolution. Willi. VIII.. Drumming. "Military Drumming During " N a t i o n a l Association of Rudimental the American Revolution--1775 ... Percussionist.A. Picture History of the Civil War. 1956.. No. 2." Drumming. Vol.. No. Gilbert. 1908. Alfons. 1862. 1964. Bower.. Farmer.R. 1970. 28.. 1972. AI.. Harry A. V No. 1968. 1976. XI.. W. James." Ludwig Drummer. Drum Rudiments. Bands and Camus. Vol. "The Development of London: Max Parrish and Co.R. Pennsylvania: John Church Company. Fennell. Ludwig. Donald. 1960. Jr.. 32. 26. VII.. "N. Barnes and Co. Gene. Ludwig. The Drummer's Heritage. Lynn Massachusetts: Fleetwood Hubbard." Ludwig Drummer. Vol. William F. 1956. and Emmett. Fennell. February. Donald.R. Records." Ludwig Drummer. VI. and Drum Corps Rules C o n g r e s s . John C. Bruce. 49 William F. Drum Co. Frederick. 2. No. Chapel Hill: The A. the authors. Frederick. 1. Danial D." Ludwig Drummer." Ludwig Drummer. System of Drum Vol.r 43 John C. Bryn Mawr.. No.. The Art of Snare Gilbert. 2. No. 1971.. 4s "Tabulations of the 1971 Majors. Chicago: W. George B. New York: American Revolution. p. The Spirit of "76and Ruffles Markovich. Sr. Flowers.. "Matched Grip.1968. Vol. Caballeros. Ludwig.. Richard 1. Delucia. New York: Hinrichen Edition. IV. Ashworth.. Percussion Instruments and Boston: Alyn & Bacon Inc.. N. Muster" Ludwig DrummeG Vol. VIII. New York: Robbins Music. No. Percussionist. BIBLIOGRAPHY I Apel. 1944. 2.L. 121.1783. 1919.

Larry Stone ." Eastman School o f Music. Petty. 1967-1972. Popp. Indianapolis: The A m e r i c a n Legion. Bradley. Strube. Front row. 10. Jodeen E. Harry Thompson . 1976...Corps instructor and winner of American Legion 1932 Championship in individual drumming. Broad Stripes Bright Stars. Inc. William Carter. H o l l y w o o d : H o l l y w o o d Percussion Club and Clinic. John Phillip. IV pt. Inc. arranger and composer of special drum corps prominent Chicago drum instructor. lllinois: Drum Corps Rules Congress. Ludwig ... Baron Von Steuben and His Regulations. 1966. Elaine. Heinie Gerlach . System of Instruction for the Drum and Fife. Encyclopaedia of Percussion Instruments and Drumming. Library of Congress. music. teacher and composer of many O u d i n e . 1976.. 1975..C. 13. 1.Snaredrummer of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Des Plaines. Villa Park.. and Chicago Symphony Orchestra." R e m o Percussion Topics No. 1869. Military Drum Beats. M a r k A. Bill Kieffer .. toe Hathaway . Connecticut Symphony Orchestra." Ludwig Drummer.Prominent Chicago drummer. " N e w Developments for Today's Field Percussion. N a v y Bicentennial C o o r d i n a t i o n O f f i c e . grand opera and symphony. Stefanowicz.Expert in rudimental instruction. Joseph R. "Treatise o n Percussion.Studio drummer of Radio Station WLS and instructor./eft to right: 3. " N e w D e v e l o p m e n t s for Contemporary Marching Percussion. Troy M i c h i g a n : by the a u t h o r . Roy Knapp . Washington. New Directions in Marching Percussion. Sanford. Bill Hammond . . Peters.. The Trumpet and Drum. 12. instructor and composer. Billy Miller. Chicago : Regulations for Competing Musical and Drill Units. " Ludwig Drummer.. 1979. Marine Band and judge in both the National Legion Individual Drumming and Drum Corps contests held in Chicago. Riling. Stone & Son. 8. Boston: G e o r g e B.. 1966. Snare drummer of Boston Opera Co. Expert rudimental instructor for all types of drummers--dance. 1.Instructor. 1886. 1977. G e o r g e Lawrence. 2.. lllinois: O l y m p i c Printing. Competitive Drum Corps. Backrow. 9. I .Chicago'smost popular theater drummer and composer of many instruction books. Robertson . Sousa. 1976. Vol. F.Pittsburgh.The Founders of Ihe National Association of Rudimental Drummers--1933 instruction books. 6. Stone. Philadelphia: Styner and Cist. Philadelphia: Ray Riling Arms Books Co. and Berrymen.drum teacher and composer of drum corps marches. 1972.Prominent theater drummer. U. Prominent as a drummer and drum instructor throughout the New Englandstates. 7. M i k e . 1944. Wm. W a s h i n g t o n : by the a u t h o r .Drum judge and corps instructor. Sanford. Baron yon... 1974. Ludwig Educational Materials. 1931. 1955. G a r d n e r A. D. "Style and T e c h n i q u e for D r u m C o r p s D r u m m i n g .: Department of Defense. V No. 5. 1965. left to right: and Boston Symphony Orchestra. 1779. A History of Military Music in America.Four times National Champion Individual Drummer of American Legion Contest.Former snaredrummer of Chicago Grand Opera Co.S. Pennsylvania. Papers o f G e o r g e Washington. Vol. White. George A. Prominent theater drummer of Chicago. Sewrey. Winner of national and state rudimental contests. r e p r i n t e d by Ray Riling Arms Books Co. Spinney. Ed Straight . Steuben. 11. . James. Regulations for the Order and Discipline of the Troops of the United States. 1973. Bill Flowers . 4. Corps Style Percussion Techniques..C. 1962.. Fred. AI.Drummer with the U.. 131 Regulations and Fred. 1. Eric J.S. W a s h i n g t o n D. W a s h i n g t o n : by the a u t h o r . Burns Moore . N e w Y o r k : Exposition Press. and L e M e r t . G o r d o n B.Timpanist of New Haven.

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