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i have to think that this new director knows nothing about the slu pep band history.   if he did, he would be a fool not to reach out to the alumni members asap and kiss up.   i personally cant imagine the slu pep band without the alumni.  what i would envision is a very weak and small pep band without.

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On 5/19/2023 at 9:56 AM, cgeldmacher said:

All other college bands I see are student bands.  Should alumni be able to participate in students musicals just because non-students are in the audience?  Should alumni be able to play for the baseball team just because non-students are in the stands?  The only reasoning behind why we have the only mostly non-student band anywhere is that "its always been that way.  Where is the logic behind that?

Those college bands have 40,000 undergraduates on the mean to choose from. We do not have that luxury. 

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55 minutes ago, thatskablamo said:

Those college bands have 40,000 undergraduates on the mean to choose from. We do not have that luxury. 

In addition, we don't have a large music department. Also, scholarships are offered to band members based on how they did in HS band. 

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He might not fully understand what he's getting himself into. I'm sure he was told all sorts of things by the AD to sell the position, but probably has no idea what kind of stuff transpired this past year that led to the position being open in the first place. Hopefully someone in the know can get him up to speed, otherwise I fear things could be somewhat ugly if he shows up to the first rehearsal in August and there's only like 10-20 undergrads present.... 

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17 minutes ago, Spoon-Balls said:

He might not fully understand what he's getting himself into. I'm sure he was told all sorts of things by the AD to sell the position, but probably has no idea what kind of stuff transpired this past year that led to the position being open in the first place. Hopefully someone in the know can get him up to speed, otherwise I fear things could be somewhat ugly if he shows up to the first rehearsal in August and there's only like 10-20 undergrads present.... 

You don't think he found this thread during the recruitment process?

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1 hour ago, Spoon-Balls said:

He might not fully understand what he's getting himself into. I'm sure he was told all sorts of things by the AD to sell the position, but probably has no idea what kind of stuff transpired this past year that led to the position being open in the first place. Hopefully someone in the know can get him up to speed, otherwise I fear things could be somewhat ugly if he shows up to the first rehearsal in August and there's only like 10-20 undergrads present.... 

If he doesn't know, we'll tell him, don't worry. 😎

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2 hours ago, Spoon-Balls said:

He might not fully understand what he's getting himself into. I'm sure he was told all sorts of things by the AD to sell the position, but probably has no idea what kind of stuff transpired this past year that led to the position being open in the first place. Hopefully someone in the know can get him up to speed, otherwise I fear things could be somewhat ugly if he shows up to the first rehearsal in August and there's only like 10-20 undergrads present.... 

I think you are 100% wrong. I think he fully understood the situation, grilled one or two past members on issues, had intense conversation with the AD, looked  at this thread and concluded, I can deal with this and fix it. 

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1 hour ago, SLUAvtr said:

Actually, Grant knows QUITE a bit about the Band, as he's a past member of the Band about 10ish+ years ago.  He and I played alongside each other in a big band/swing band back in the day as well.  Grant is a VERY good dude, solid player, and knows his way around.  Of all the people I could've wanted to take over the reins, I am super grateful it is him.  He also is getting re-established here in STL, so the lack of communication is most likely from him just trying to get his feet settled under him.  

He knows the history and we'll be working with him to hopefully bring back the good times.  Time will tell, but he's got good support from us, now we'll see how the AD treats him.  😬

this is extremely good news!   thanks for the info on Grant's Billiken Pep Band history.

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3 hours ago, SLUAvtr said:

Actually, Grant knows QUITE a bit about the Band, as he's a past member of the Band about 10ish+ years ago.  He and I played alongside each other in a big band/swing band back in the day as well.  Grant is a VERY good dude, solid player, and knows his way around.  Of all the people I could've wanted to take over the reins, I am super grateful it is him.  He also is getting re-established here in STL, so the lack of communication is most likely from him just trying to get his feet settled under him.  

He knows the history and we'll be working with him to hopefully bring back the good times.  Time will tell, but he's got good support from us, now we'll see how the AD treats him.  😬

I'm surprised no one I know remembers him being in the band, he was probably in a couple years before I was. I got into it in 2013 and that's the first I've heard of him. Thanks for letting me know.

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24 minutes ago, BrettJollyComedyHour said:

I'm surprised no one I know remembers him being in the band, he was probably in a couple years before I was. I got into it in 2013 and that's the first I've heard of him. Thanks for letting me know.

👍You bet!  And I may be off on my 10ish+ years...maybe more like 15-20?!  Nope, not showing my age here at....all!  

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5 hours ago, SLUAvtr said:

Actually, Grant knows QUITE a bit about the Band, as he's a past member of the Band about 10ish+ years ago.  He and I played alongside each other in a big band/swing band back in the day as well.  Grant is a VERY good dude, solid player, and knows his way around.  Of all the people I could've wanted to take over the reins, I am super grateful it is him.  He also is getting re-established here in STL, so the lack of communication is most likely from him just trying to get his feet settled under him.  

He knows the history and we'll be working with him to hopefully bring back the good times.  Time will tell, but he's got good support from us, now we'll see how the AD treats him.  😬

If he or the band is being treated poorly please notify the board.  The rabid fans will stand for the band.

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Great news all around, really hope alumni can return and provide support for Grant and the next era of the World's Greatest Pep Band. It will take time and effort to recruit new student musicians. It always felt like the number of actual students joining the band really fell off a cliff around 2014-2015, by 2019-2020 it was primarily alumni carrying the entire brass section (bones, tubas, trumpets)...

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  • 3 weeks later...

-thanks for the link

-as to the article, previous director resigned  "in widely reported discontent", really? did I miss this wide reporting?

-were there ever 150 members? if so, what's the max that showed up to games? I don't remember 150

-Band members I would appreciate any updates on how you are being treated while not violating the terms of any meetings or communications where you have to pledge to the ADept that you won't release those details

-looking forward to hearing you at games

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1 hour ago, longtimelistenerfirsttimec said:

a front page story about the band is not this hole thing about only wanting to play at mens hoops games

Absolutely insane that the post put this front page. You can't tell me it's not on purpose. Depends on who you ask in the band from my POV. I think the basic level is that they have been asked to attend non-basketball games on short notice, but it's not a request. Totally reasonable for band to pushback. There are some in the band that have used mental health as a framework for their complain, which I find a little disingenuous but that's just my opinion. I know there was a situation within the band regarding mental health but I don't know if the demanding schedule and that issue are actually related. Really it seems just as simple as the Athletics Department planning better, being clear on their expectations before fall sports start and if deviation from the schedule is necessary plan ahead for unknowns so they can include those in the schedule. 

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38 minutes ago, billikenfan05 said:

Absolutely insane that the post put this front page. You can't tell me it's not on purpose. Depends on who you ask in the band from my POV. I think the basic level is that they have been asked to attend non-basketball games on short notice, but it's not a request. Totally reasonable for band to pushback. There are some in the band that have used mental health as a framework for their complain, which I find a little disingenuous but that's just my opinion. I know there was a situation within the band regarding mental health but I don't know if the demanding schedule and that issue are actually related. Really it seems just as simple as the Athletics Department planning better, being clear on their expectations before fall sports start and if deviation from the schedule is necessary plan ahead for unknowns so they can include those in the schedule. 

You hit the nail on the head. It's unfortunate, but there's still two factions from the split, much like Brexit it's remains and leaves. There are folks I've known 10 years that I haven't heard a word from in 8 months.

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42 minutes ago, dlarry said:

The part the caught my attention was “She wished the band was a more welcoming place to underclassman.” 

Could that be another reason numbers are down? 
I don’t see underclassman joining anything when they don’t feel wanted or welcomed.  
 

Yeah Sarah kind of tackled that when she took over in January. It had been a bit of a quiet point of contention about student engagement and most games it seemed like 80-20 alumni to students. When I started in winter 2013, we had over 100 members as the article said and now post-resignation, it's down to 40ish people on a regular basis. 

I'll agree that the athletic department hasn't really done much in keeping us in the loop on the new director. There is a social meet and greet event for all members next Wednesday the 30th where everyone can mingle and ask questions, etc. Otherwise, we go full force into rehearsals starting September 7th, which is about 2 or 3 weeks later than usual.

 

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Is lack of student engagement in the band the last few years the result of the student section becoming somewhat viable?

Back in the day the band was the student section, then when we had small or fairweather students the band was like the antlers, a better edgier, student section, just with instruments.  I really think there is a connection between the rise of the student section the last 10-15 years and band participation.

I enjoyed a much rowdier band when I was younger.  I hope SLU takes a more hands-off approach to the direction of the band.  This will also encourage students who maybe would just do crazy stuff in the student section, as opposed to picking up an instrument and being rowdy.

Once the band meets please follow up on the board.  If there is anything posters can do to help we will.  I'd much rather give money to the band this year than the basketball program.

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This whole situation sounds like many sports and staff at slu athletics too. The amount of turnover in that particular department over the years is a lot and I’ve heard it all speaks to bigger issues that I don’t have direct experience with. Might be worth someone from BoT to look into, especially if students feel disconnected. I’d survey all former staff and coaches over last few years that left as well to get an honest opinion. Something seems off in general imo. 

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