Heartbeat of Band


Kevin Balke, Reporter

The percussionists beat along on their drums and keep the beat of the band alive. They keep the crowd cheering for their team. Without them the band would lack the rhythm to synergize with each other and the crowd they perform for.

The marching band percussion competed in their first competition, Battle at the Lakes, on Sept. 18 at Challenger Columbia Stadium and won first place.

“[Percussion’s job] is helping the band keep tempo usually because drumline is in the back and the sound is more immediate than wind players,” junior Madison Klippel said.

Percussionists learn to play a variety of percussion instruments and can change which one they play depending on the piece of music.

“The percussionist does a bunch of jobs,” senior Nick Jenks said. “A lot of percussionists do a lot of accessory instruments.”

Percussion instruments are different than wind instruments because they take no air to play.

“Percussion adds color and a layer of musicality that you can’t get with wind instruments,” Jenks said.

Percussion adds a different layer to the band’s music.

“Music is really weird because even if you’re not seeing color your hearing different layers and flavors of sound,” Jenks said. “Percussion has a lot of stuff that you can’t get with a wind instrument.”

Being in percussion takes up a lot of time.

“The past couple years I’ve procrastinated a lot and it hurt my band placement because I’m not as up to date as I should be with learning and even right now,” Klippel said.

Percussion also competed with the band at the Friendswood Marching Contest Saturday, Sept. 25.