Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Band Camp, Day Two

The Mount Pleasant Oiler Marching Band focused on drill its first two days, and Robert says he's on his way to learning it.
He's one of only three eighth-graders who are part of the band, and he's keeping up with the intense regimen. The day starts at 7:45 a.m., which means that our day starts even earlier. It takes about 25 minutes to get from Lake Isabella to MPHS.

The day runs until 9 p.m. It's drill. It's marching. It's sectional music. It's intense, and Robert's gotten himself slightly sunburned. But as far as he's concerned, it's the greatest thing he's ever done.

He's been well-accepted by the older kids. He says that it helps that he's the only clarinetist who has a watch. (Most high school kids these days keep track of time with their mobile phones, and, course, mobile phones aren't allowed on the practice field.)

The show is based on the music of Led Zeppelin -- "Stairway to Heaven," "Black Dog," "The Immigrant Song" and "Kashmir." Incredible stuff, a marching band accompanied by a rock combo. The bassist already has the gut-wrenching bass line of "The Immigrant Song" down cold.

Three more days of intense, band-camp stuff, then daily practice until the first performance Aug. 25, when the Oilers host Midland. Then the real work begins.

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