Community Support Helped Moss Point Band Pick Up The Pace - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

07/20/05

Community Support Helped Moss Point Band Pick Up The Pace

It's summer band camp at Moss Point High. Flutes are fluttering, trumpets are tooting, and drums are thumping. But the sound was nothing like that four years ago.

Senior Tavarius Payton says the equipment was holding the band back.

"Tubas, baritones, spit values falling apart and getting stuck. We just couldn't play on them," Payton says.

Johnathan Smith also remembers the old instruments.

"We had tape on some of the horns," Smith says. "We'd be marching on the field and some of the horns would just fall apart."

"Yeah, they were very old, older than us," Payton says.

"When I came on board, we had several instruments that were in the band when I was here," Band Director Otis P. Carter III says.

That would make the instruments some 30-years-old.

"Instrumentation has a lot to do with how you sound," Carter says.

For years, students admit the band was mediocre. Now they're scoring superiors at state competitions thanks to some support from the community.

"So many people have donated and gave us money to buy new instruments, it's just incredible to see how much people care about us," Smith says.

"We've bought four new baritones, four new melaphones, those are marching French horns," Carter says.

They have an entirely new percussion battery and 10 new trumpets are on the way.

"Before then, we had a real puny sound. Now our sound is really full," Smith says.

"Oh it is a success story," Carter adds.

Having new horns to toot has also made a change in student's attitudes.

"It inspired most of us to go home and practice because we got new horns," Payton says.

There's no denying it. The new enthusiasm has surely helped this band pick up the pace.

Although the band has come a long way, Director Otis Carter says they are still in need of donations for instrument upkeep. If you would like to help, call the Moss Point High School at (228) 475-5721.

By Jaimee Goad

Powered by Frankly