Monday, 12/3 8:50 AM
This was the 2nd camp for the Cincinnati Tradition Drum and Bugle Corps, an all-age marching group. It was an even better camp for me, despite the efforts of Cincinnati’s Metro buses and my bank account! 😉
The early CT camps are on Sundays, roughly 9 AM – 6 PM. My transit plans to these early camps: leave Louisville, via Greyhound, on Saturday afternoon, and return (again, via Greyhound) very late on Sunday night.
The ride to Cincinnati went pretty smoothly. The ride from the Greyhound Station to my hotel also went smoothly… until I realized that I was on the right route but the wrong branch. I did get to see how close Kenwood Mall (a BIG mall/shopping complex) was to our rehearsal site, but it cost me $21+ for an Uber ride to the hotel.
Once I finally got to my room, the rest of the night was spent doing homework. I only watched snippets of the Boise State-Fresno State game.
I got to the rehearsal site with plenty of time to spare. Jesse led our warm-ups again; this time, the focus was on the abs. My abs – and arms, because they were also warmed up and stretched – will thank her later in the season, when they’ve had months to get used to it. But on this day, there was much grumbling coming from the abs. 😉
After the physical warm-ups, and some intro remarks from our Show Arranger, Nick, the Brass went with Andrew (Caption Head) for the first half of the day. We also got introduced to our Brass Techs for the season, one for Upper Brass and one for Lower Brass. They mainly worked with us on sound and timing: moving the feet and getting the notes to speak through the horns on time. I think I did decently – I kept in time, for the most part, and my sound seemed better than the first camp. Some personal critiques: I still am playing incredibly flat and I don’t have the breath endurance that I’ve had in the past. Both should improve with work and repetition.
The rookie marchers also got to talk to Nick, one-on-one. It was good to hear what he was envisioning with CT and it was nice to ask him a couple of questions about what to expect.
I brought lunch from home, which ended up helping a bunch: I got to study and get another chunk of Database homework done before Sunday night’s due date and Tuesday’s Final. Whew!
Andrew had to leave early, so the Brass spent the 2nd half of the day with Nick. He really hammered home “timing” with some rhythm exercises, combined with Mark Timing. Nick also kept the horns up for long periods of time. The weird thing with me was that only one of my shoulders started bothering me. My left shoulder got sore and fatigued but my right shoulder wasn’t too bad.
We had a full core meeting at 4:30, with Nick and Corps Director, Tom Slade, where Nick laid out a few ground rules for rehearsal etiquette and communication between the marchers and the Staff (it wasn’t anything negative, just things to expect). We loaded the trailer, circled up for final announcements (which I didn’t miss this time!), and were dismissed!
I was pleased with Camp #2. The Low Brass Tech, Jake, liked my playing-position posture. I felt like I improved a little bit from Camp #1 to Camp #2, playing-wise. I didn’t improve much, physically, but that comes down to more effort on building back up the flexibility and endurance. Playing felt better this time, until I started running out of gas at about 3:30. Overall, I can’t complain!
The next Camp is December 16th. We will be getting show music during that camp! Also, members from DCA’s Upper Management will stop by to take a look at us – awesome! I have to make sure that I’m off work for that weekend: while I don’t normally work weekends, that weekend starts an “All Hands On Deck” period, where everyone starts filling in on other shifts during busy times. We’ll see. After that? Just waiting for the January-April schedule to get finalized.
Until next time!