111 thoughts on “DCI: You’re on Notice!”

      1. Many individual corps have been amazing, but DCI as an organization has been a failure (just compare the number of corps competing in the 70’s with the number competing today).

        1. Why does DCI refuse to show us their detailed financial reports when many people like myself and others have asked to see them? We want to see where every single penny is spent. Why doesn’t DCI show their marchers how they are spending every single penny of THEIR money? This activity is for the kids, and those kids practice in 90 degree weather, and sleep on gym floors. Those kids, along with all of us DCI marching band volunteers deserve to know just how DCI is spending every cent. This activity should not pamper any adults with DCI money, ever. How much money a night does dCI spend on hotel rooms? Is DCI thrifty and frugal? Does DCI use places like Priceline to get the absolute lowest prices on DCI paid for hotel rooms? Who is given DCI paid for hotel rooms and why? Who is given free meals paid for by DCI, when and why? On limos and cab services? Do any DCI employees get a company car? What does DCI have to hide? DCI be translucent, show us your specific detailed financials, every single penny of them! Those kids marching in the hot sun, riding hundreds of miles a day in cramped buses, sleeping on gym floors, practicing and working hard from sun up until well after sun down deserve nothing less.

          1. WHY DON’T YOU SHUT UP?

            SINCE YOU’VE NEVER RUN A SUCCESSFUL 501(C)(3), YOU HAVE NO CLUE HOW ANY OF THIS WORKS.

            QUIT TROLLING. USE GOOGLE. FUCK OFF AND DIE. ❤ #no🧢

            1. DCI is a nonprofit – most of the information you seek is publicly available. Don’t blame DCI for your inability to find it.
            2. It’s clear “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt has no experience with business travel. DCI almost certainly gets corporate rates for hotels, car rentals, etc. – which are better than any deals one can get on Priceline.
            3. translucent – the word you’re looking for is transparent.
          2. Thank you for clearing that up for him. His posts are more cringe than opinion or fact. 😬 #parforhowdy

            He literally doesn’t have any DCI experience and he only blew the whistle on questionable issues AFTER he was dismissed from Pioneer – of which he could only get the cooking gig by volunteering. He has literally never given or gotten funds from a corps or DCI.

            He literally wrote this letter to DCI referencing categorically issues that individual corps.deal with, not DCI – the overseeing entity.

            But – ya’ll already know….. Iiiiiiiiit’s The Howdy Show!

            Ask him how the latest court case turned out. 🤣🤣🤣🤣

          3. Please oh, expert tell use about your skills in music and how your ran a corps? Into the flipping ground. You are more pedo the Apostle. Go blather your pudding flap slack jaw somewhere else.

        2. For the record, there have never been 400 competing drum and bugle corps at the same time, even before DCI.

          DCI is not entirely to blame for the decrease in the number of competing corps. They bear some responsibility for there being fewer corps, but it’s delusional to think there would be 100’s of corps around today if it wasn’t for DCI.

          1. UNEDITED due to time, this is not a term paper…
            1. Heather Kelch continues to lie about me. I really wish that she would get a life and get out of mine. I block her out of my life as much as I can. I ran the Trumpet of the Lord 501(c)3 successfully for 40 years. I was never dismissed from Pioneer. Yuo clearly have me mistaken with a different Pio brass staff member. In 2008 I was with Pio from weeks before the very first show all the way until until Indy. I was never once asked to leave Pio. I did not miss shows that Pio was in. In 2008 I was with Pio more days than any other brass staff member was, and while on tour I even taught Pios brass all by myself for over two days. I attended more of Pios 08 shows than any other 08 brass staff member. Timmy Allen soloist and the 08 brass caps very own son said “When I taught Pios brass by itself that the brass got much better” He was not kidding. Roman asked me to come back, and he did now want me to leave Pio. I chose not to come back in 09 mostly due to health issues. I am just too sick to tour. Because of my many illnesses I struggled all of the tour in 08. I am (no matter what you two drummers claim) gifted at teaching brass ONLY because I was blessed to have been taught by the very best. I know what I am doing with a brassline because my instructors taught me well. They also taught me how to be a soloist, which was Jims future plans for me no matter what any of you liars say, I was there, you were not. Look at my influences. Ott, Lutz, Martin, Morsh, Holsinger (who I played solos for in the Cleveland Tn Community Band in the Conn Center). I went on to be a trumpet soloist at Parkview High School, Brookwood High School, Liberty University, and for the late Dr. Jerry Falwell Sr. in revivals and on the Olld Time Gospel Hour. In 2008 at Cudahy High School Roman even called me “the best sounding horn player (teacher or marcher) ever to come to Pioneer”. Those were his word. That would have made Jim pleased. I have been given funds by a DCI corps, don’t be silly. I have donated funds to DCI corps. My wife and I have volunteered for a top 12 DCI marching band. I have donated $$ to wc, oc, and new corps start ups. Over 5k at least. As a matter of fact, on my very limited disability budget I sacrificed and just made a nice donation to a corps last week that has been a multiple time DCI wc top 12 finalist.
            I am not at liberty to discuss in any way in public a court case that I was once involved with which has now been dismissed. Nor will I ever. Heather aren’t you the one with no DCI experience (I don’t think Heather has been a director, instructor, soloist, or a marcher in DCI…and I have been all of those things? I did the right thing to protect peoples lives. Yes it is true that I was a cook at Pioneer, I also taught brass (sometimes I was the only brass staff there) , taught a little marching, worked some on show visual type things such as I worked with Dr. Cecil Austin, was the 08’s staff’s in house brass repairman (I fixed what I could, sent the rest of repairs that I could not fix to Mike – BAC HD). I over saw the loading and unloading of the brass instruments on the truck inc. making much needed improvements. I oversaw changes that needed to be made immediately to stop horns from being damaged in the truck. I worked with logistics, helped do quite a bit of admin type of tasks to help Roman, and too many other things to mention. Heather please do both of us a favor, get out of my life and stay out of it. You have made serious threats to physically harm me and my family, and you have libeled me in the worst kind of ways imaginable. Shame on you. You do not know me. You have never met me. You tell lies about me often because you are jealous of me, and like James love me and just can not leave me alone. You clearlymust have some kind of wierk sickop dangerous stalking infatuation with me which will not allow for you to take the high road and stay out of my life and personal business. I pray for my families safety that none of us ever will meet you. Please take the high road, get a life, and stay out of mine. Stop stalking my family. Stop illegally threatening to physically harm me and my family with guns. Stop calling my family. Leave my family alone.
            2. James the information that I mentioned above IS NOT publically available. What does DCI have to hide? Don’t ask me to find information that IS NOT publically available. Since you think that DCI’s detailed financials as to how the spend every penny are available James, prove it to us and give us the detailed DCI financial information about all of the hotel rooms that DCI paid for in 2018. I say you can not do it. I win.
            3. James A. Chappelle I hold a regionally accredited and an ATS accredited Doctoral Degree. You James A. chapelle are jealous and refuse to stop harassing me about my legitimate earned doctorates because you sir do not hold any doctoral degrees. Take the high road sir. Stop being jealous of me. Get over it, I have what it takes to earn an accredited doctorate, and as of today you sir do not.
            4. translucent – transparent, potato PotatoE. This ain’t a term paper and I ain’t got the time to proof read.
            5. Obviously being the # 4 of all time in my genre in # of concerts to dates in 43 states, to claim I do not have experience with business travel, getting the best rates for hotels, etc. is just plain silly. I bet I get better rates than DCI, and I would like to be able to prove that but I can’t because DCI hides their financials from the people that they are supposed to be serving.
            6. James and I will just have to disagree on the # of real drum and BUGLE corps that there used to be. That 400 number is low and the actual # of corps in the 70’s and or early 80’s was much higher. One thing is for sure, DCI is now down to under 50 DCI marching bands.
            7. Were it not for DCI there would be well over 400 real drum and BUGLE corps today, instead of less than 50 DCI summer advanced high school marching bands. DCI is to blame for the destruction of our genre, and is mostly to blame for the decrease in the # of units.
            8. Heritage was run very well. I am pleased that Heritage had over 100 kids participate. Unfortunately the high school marching band parents on the board of directors voted not to allow the kids to compete in the 6 1994 DCI shows that I got Heritage had been invited to compete in. Unfortunately their poor decision, along with them voting not to become SOA’s official feeder corps after being invited to do so by SOA ended up folding Heritage. Every kid at Heritage had an excellent experience. EVERY kid at Heritage was returned EVERY SINGLE PENNY of their dues. How many corps that folded can say that? Not many.
            9. I do not mind discussing how DCI needs to improve. Lets be professional and take the high road and lay off all of the immature childish name calling/ lies/ ugly – unhealthy-
            mean spirited personal attacks. Thank you – M.S. L.T.D.

          2. I will shoot you, exactly as I claimed before. Sorry, it is legal and you got yourself into trouble trying to get me into trouble.

            I run a drum corps fan page for over 22k people. Obviously you suck (which we know) because you can’t find simple photos of me while marching in DCI (a finalist corps, nonetheless) or while teaching or while being there when my kids marched or anything. You are a fucking loon.

            You want to talk about stalking…. ERRRRRRRRRONE knows what you did and still do to me. Shall I post your attempted call records to my phone? Or your hundreds of attempts to get get and docs my and my daughter’s addresses? Or your dozens of attempts at contacting my tenants in my rental homes trying to find me? How about contacting ABC News in Phx with lies and it ended up flipping on top of your lard ass.

            You are correct Sir, you NEVER – EVER want to cross paths with me. Not a threat but a whole-ass fucking promise.

            Since you aren’t allowed at drum corps shows, per DCI corporate, let me see you at one in EVER. Bet. 🥰

          3. 9. I do not mind discussing how DCI needs to improve. Lets be professional and take the high road and lay off all of the immature childish name calling/ lies/ ugly – unhealthy-
            mean spirited personal attacks. Thank you – M.S. L.T.D.

            Here’s an example of “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt taking the high road.

          4. Hypocrisy at its finest.

            I am a Bitch and a fine Bitch I shall continue to be. <– not hypocrisy

          5. 3. James A. Chappelle I hold a regionally accredited and an ATS accredited Doctoral Degree. You James A. chapelle are jealous and refuse to stop harassing me about my legitimate earned doctorates because you sir do not hold any doctoral degrees. Take the high road sir. Stop being jealous of me. Get over it, I have what it takes to earn an accredited doctorate, and as of today you sir do not.

            It’s clear to everyone “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt’s degrees are worthless (check out the steaming pile of shit that is his “thesis project”), he’s just too dense to realize it. With all his degrees, there’s little evidence “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt has ever had much of a career requiring any college degree. Also, the only “talent” one needs to get “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt’s degrees is the willingness to go into something like $110,000 worth of debt.

          6. 2. James the information that I mentioned above IS NOT publically available. What does DCI have to hide? Don’t ask me to find information that IS NOT publically available. Since you think that DCI’s detailed financials as to how the spend every penny are available James, prove it to us and give us the detailed DCI financial information about all of the hotel rooms that DCI paid for in 2018. I say you can not do it. I win.

            Do your own homework.

          7. 6. James and I will just have to disagree on the # of real drum and BUGLE corps that there used to be. That 400 number is low and the actual # of corps in the 70’s and or early 80’s was much higher. One thing is for sure, DCI is now down to under 50 DCI marching bands.

            There’s nothing to disagree about. There were never 400 competing drum and bugle corps at the same time during the 70’s and 80’s.

            7. Were it not for DCI there would be well over 400 real drum and BUGLE corps today

            At best, there may be a few more than there are now. 400 is a number “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt pulled from his ass.

          8. I called him y’all. Left a message. Offered to meet up and chat. But nothing in return.

            I’m trying y’all. I am trying. 😁

            Bless his black, little, shrunken heart. 👌

          9. to claim I do not have experience with business travel, getting the best rates for hotels, etc. is just plain silly. I bet I get better rates than DCI, and I would like to be able to prove that but I can’t because DCI hides their financials from the people that they are supposed to be serving.

            That he wonders if DCI uses something like Priceline to get the lowest rates pretty much tells everyone “Dr”. Michael E. Schmidt knows nothing about corporate travel.

            Another example of “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt’s ignorance about business travel:

            Michael E. Schmidt is full of shit

            Taxis and Uber rides are expensive. Car rentals are cheap. For a typical business trip, it’s almost always cheaper to rent a car than rely on taxis and ride share services.

      2. DCI destroyed all of drum corps by draining and failing to bolster the circuits.

        If drum corps is to rise again DCI must fucking DIE!

        DIE!, DCI!, FUCKING! DIE!

        1. “When I taught Pios brass by itself that the brass got much better”
          Re: Should have said “When Michael taught Pios 08 brassline all by himself, the entire brassline got much better”

          Timmy did not teach the brass line I did. The sound improvement of that line in such a short time was amazing. Imho Pio was overblowing those horns. Several kids were too timid. We worked on the basics, intonation, optimum sound resonance, vocalization, tonality, etc.

          God Bless
          John 3:16
          ” for the kids”

          1. Not true. Nothing about any season you have mentioned is true.

            More liars come from the proverbial cloth of Christ than one could imagine.

            Your lard ass can’t even name 400 corps because that many have NEVER existed. But way to backseat on that lie. Again, you have lots of experience at that.

            You have never gotten paid by a single drum corps. You have never donated a penny to a single drum corps. If so, prove it. It is just that simple. Shit… you have no photos and NO VIDEOS of you ever playing anything for real. I’ve seen the ones in jeans and crop tops, you over freak. It’s the 21st century…. come on out! 🏳️‍🌈 Explain your infatuation with young kids and costumes you didn’t design or have any say about? You are fixated. Instead you shod find a bridge…. you know what to do.

            💋

          2. “When Michael taught Pios 08 brassline all by himself, the entire brassline got much better”

            Michael E. Schmidt Pioneer 2008

            Note: SFB == “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt

        2. I reposted pictures of DCI marching band members that were already out there in the public domain in places such as Google and Facebook.

          1. Michael Schmidt L.T.D. - holds a SACS regionally accredited and ATS accredited doctoral degree says:

            James censors my comments because he does not want for any of you to know the TRUTH.

            The TRUTH shall set you free.

          2. “Dr.” Michael E, Schmidt posted those pictures with the intent to criticize and humiliate them. Also, just because pictures can be found on Google or Facebook does not mean they are in the public domain.

          3. James censors my comments because he does not want for any of you to know the TRUTH

            My website, my rules. Deal with it.

          4. There were NEVER 400+ drum corps active.

            Argue with the facts Dumpling Roll Howdy. We know you live in your own made up world of theology degrees and trumpet solos, that’s cool. We also know the truth and that you are a deranged psychopathic pedophile.

            Anyway, here is more proof for you to ponder while Particia changes your shit ass diaper.

            https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_drum_corps

          5. “Dr. ” Michael E. Schmidt posted this to his stupid drum corps Facebook group:

            Michael E. Schmidt is an asshole

            1. So far, I’ve deleted one comment from this post from “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt. It was abusive and off-topic.
            2. “Dr. ” Michael E. Schmidt’s forbids posts critical of him in his stupid Facebook group, yet he often uses his stupid Facebook group as a platform to criticize others.
            3. “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt claims to forbid racist content in his stupid Facebook group, yet in June 2021, he posted a series of posts full of racist dog whistles.

            Update (07/10/2021): “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt censored a post from his stupid Facebook group. This post did not criticize the or even mention the moderator. Apparently someone posted a link to this article, which didn’t mention Michael E. Schmidt until he started adding comments to it.

            Update (07/15/2021): An example of “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt criticizing someone in his stupid Facebook group.

          6. Yeah, we have thousands upon thousands of this asshole’s posts/documents/lies/phone calls recorded/court cases recorded (audio)/etc.

            He can run from the truth but it will never go away. That’s why he’s in reset mode literally ever 72 hours. 🤣🤣🤣🤣

        3. Michael Schmidt L.T.D. (The one between Heather and Michael who hold a SACS regionally accredited and ATS accredited doctorate) says:

          I will shoot you, exactly as I claimed before. Sorry, it is legal and you got yourself into trouble trying to get me into trouble.

          I run a drum corps fan page for over 22k people. Obviously you suck (which we know) because you can’t find simple photos of me while marching in DCI (a finalist corps, nonetheless) or while teaching or while being there when my kids marched or anything. You are a fucking loon.

          You want to talk about stalking…. ERRRRRRRRRONE knows what you did and still do to me. Shall I post your attempted call records to my phone? Or your hundreds of attempts to get get and docs my and my daughter’s addresses? Or your dozens of attempts at contacting my tenants in my rental homes trying to find me? How about contacting ABC News in Phx with lies and it ended up flipping on top of your lard ass.

          You are correct Sir, you NEVER – EVER want to cross paths with me. Not a threat but a whole-ass fucking promise.

          Since you aren’t allowed at drum corps shows, per DCI corporate, let me see you at one in EVER. Bet. 🥰

          Re: oNCE AGAIN Heather Kelch lies and lies and lies about me.

          So many lies I AM NOT GOING TO WASTE MY TIME RESPONDING TO THEM
          Stay out of my life Heater. Stop stalking me.

          STOP STALKIME ME ON THE NET, please get some help. Counseling in available for you in AZ, please seek it out.

          For the rest of you as proof that Heather Kelch is once again stalking me just take a look at the time stamps from July 3rd, , Heather Kelch stalked me In here. Thank goonedd for FB where HK can not stalk me as I have blocked her.

          1. Oh I’ll be on you like white on rice. Since Derek is done with you, now it’s my turn. I have the $ and I have the time. This is going to be fun!

          2. Michael HOWDY I LOST THE CASE Schmidt L.T.D. (SACS regionally accredited douchebag and ATS accredited doctorate in beastility ) says:

            Why does his stupid fuking name keep getting longer? Is he buying his cracker jack degrees from liberty with food stamps. Oh and HOWDY… I was a DCI instructor. You are a lump of excrement rolled in about 300lbs or lard and old baby fat. Please go back to sulking Pats saggy teets and let the rest of us live i life of peace without your sputum staining out screens… Please crawl back into that dark cave you all your warped version of reality and just go the fuk away.

  1. Listen. Dci does not suck. In fact its the bast thing that ever happend to me. i marched and i cant wait for next year.

    1. My heart aches with sarrow for the poor ignorant soul who posted this. They obviously haven’t felt the passion of Phantom Regiments wall of sound or seen the pefection of the Cavaliers formations or felt the chills from a Blue Devils screamers. I must agree with putting George Hopkins and The Cadets on notice though, mics on the field and narration was a bad idea. “Persuite of Happiness” anyone?

      1. I agree that Phantom is great but all you said about these corps was there long before DCI.
        the only thing that DCI has done for DrumCorps is shorten thje season , up the cost and eliminated the small home town drum corps that we all use to love, you may be way too young to remem ber the shows that took a whole weekend to have with more corps competeing than are in exixtance now. Is DCI really worth the cost?

        1. Correct. DCI has rules that put mandatory requirements on new, small and struggling DCI bands such as a minumum amount of kids (at least 30, so if you do not have at least 30 kids DCI will not allow for your kids to compete in DCI open class), a minimum budget , and the ability to perform at a minimum amount of shows. This is so wrong. DCI bands with less than 30 kidsd matter. These unjust DCI rules are one reason why today DCI has less than 45 DCI marching bands. DCI once had over 400 real drum and bugle corps. With DCI’s current rulkes many DCI bands such as the once very small Blue Stars might have folded. But never fear, if your DCI marching band has less than 30 kids, DCI now offers your kids pay for play. DCI has now started an activity called Sound Sport (which is a DCI FUNDRAISER to sell tickets to DCI shows) where kids can participate ONLY if they PAY DCI $25.00 per kid to perform in each DCI Sound Sport show. Often Sound Sport shows are in smaller venues than the world class bands such as at Indy where DCI Sound Sport Bands play outside of Lucus Stadium, in an outdoors setting at a venue, with very little seating, outside of Lucas stadium, imho similar to outside of a strip mall.

          1. [“Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt‘s assholery deleted. I’ve left his other comments alone, because they are at least on-topic.] – click here to see an example of him taking the high road.

            I’m often critical of DCI, but the difference between me and “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt is I’ve never criticized marching members or gone after them by posting photos of them on Facebook forums without their permission.

  2. Although there have been many advances and succeses in drum corps since the advent of DCI, You can also say they are victims of their own success. I agree with Old drummer, in that DCI has killed the small, local Drum Corps and the local regional competitions that supported them. In the New York Tri state area, there used to be a local competitive circuit (Garden State Circuit) that provided a competitive venue for Drum Corps that were developing and growing, who more often then not, did not have the budgets or personnel of the top 12 level DCI corps. The idea of a local/regional competition circuit provided a good place for Corps of the same level to learn and develop skills required for competition at the national levels. in the days of the local circuits, (especilly in the North East), you had many more Corps traveling to regional DCI level championships than you have now. I remember going to DCI East in 1975, and there were well over 45 Corps showing up for all levels of competition. There aren’t nearly that number today. In order for the “Activity” to continue to develop new talent and continue to grow, there must be differentiation. Drum Corps should be more than just the top 12, and everything else an after thought. And “B” corps of the top 12 are included in this group, as they usually share and benefit from their larger organizations.
    If DCI wants to be the end-all of Drum Corps in America, they must reach out and support the smaller competitive circuits that can be the incubators for developing the next Carolina Crown, or allow the resurgence of a Troopers. The primary reason for most Corps dropping out of competition, or disbanding altogether is the financial burden of trying to compete as the top 12 do, and ttrying to meet the financial requirements levied on organizations by DCI that prevents them from being able to compete at any level. By supporting the local/regional competion circuits like the Garden State Circuit, Corps who may be considering disbanding could easily shift to local competition to help keep their organizations around, providing what this activity is all about, an opportunity for learning, personal growth, and a whole lot of fun for the young people who choose to be involved in an activity we all know and love.

    1. In total agreement. While researching data for all Pacific Northwest based Corps, I realized that there was a regional circuit that covered the Northwest states, Alaska, and Western Canada. Reviewing posted score cards revealed an average of 8-10 core units, along with 10-12 other Corps who would compete in some, but not all, events.

      I would like to see a return to regional circuits too, with maybe the following proposed. Lets take the west coast. Regions would be (3 examples):

      Pacific Northwest/Western Canada
      California/Arizona/Nevada
      Mountain states (Colorado/Montana/Wyoming)

      World Class Corps: Free to participate in any DCI event around the country.

      Open Class: Regional competition primarily, with possible one or two performances in one or two other regions. Eligible for promotion to World Class per DCI requirements.

      Re-establish A60, Div 2 and Div 3 classifications, regional competition only.

      Open Class winners of each region would move on to the world championships in Indiana.

      A60/D2 & D3, when determined to be financially viable and experienced, could then be considered for promotion (but only after 5 years).

      This would reduce cost, wear and tear on smaller corps, and allow them to feel as part of the overall Drum & Bugle Corps experience.

    2. Exactly.

      If DCI cared about drum corps, they would have done everything they could to support the local circuits.

      Driving hundreds of people to East Bumblast to confuse the natives is just random incineration of money for no reason except to give DCI something to do wrong.

      By the way: DIE!, DCI!, FUCKING! DIE!

  3. I wonder if the person who posted that even marched in drum corps. if he did, someone tell me what corps he went to so I dont make the same mistake. Thankfully, I’m not moving from Bones and I don’t see myself in any other corps. Drum Corps was the best experience of my life. If there wasnt an age out, I would march till I died.

    1. He never marched for real. He will lie and tell you paragraphs of a built up bullshit story. But it is all 🧢!

  4. Oldschooldrumcorps said it best. I started marching in the early 70s in philly and moved from there to Seattle. There were in the Seattle area close to 20 corps of various capabilities and sizes, and by the end of the 70s there were probably less than 5 and now only one. A DCI member corps. I used to love going to local competitions every week during the summer. Now there is one competition a year in this area. My son marches competitive marching band and while it’s not the same at least they get to march and compete at the local level and those kids probably understand what drum corps used to be like far more than the kids who are in DCI championship corps.

    1. marchedinthe70s! I also marched in the 70’s, and did so in the Seattle area. I agree that DCI has killed Drum & Bugle Corps. And George has done a lot to destroy it. There’s no comparison to standing in front of a 60 person hornline, with G Bugles. Religious.
      And, I have to agree, there used to be over 30 drum corps in the Northwest area. We used to “Literally” and I mean Literally have two contests Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights going on the West side of the Cascades, and the East side of the Cascades (mountains, not corps). Now, there’s, what 3 corps left? Cascades, Thunder, Crusaders. We used to have about 10 A corps, what we would consider Open or World class (hard to stay current, with all the changes DCI makes). There used to be real competition in every region. There was a reason to have regionals. There was a reason to have Nationals. Because there were so many good corps, you didn’t already know who was going to win, or know which 2 or 3 would be the champ.
      I’m tired of the way Drum Corps has been run for the last 30 years. It’s been going downhill ever since then. When I started in corps, in the 70’s, there was close to 3,500 corps across the U.S. That was enough for the equipment makers to be able to make money on Corps brass. Now the real competition IS in Marching Bands. And they’re actually more like old corps than Corps. Who’da’believed’dit!!

      If you never saw drum corps in the 70’s, you just can’t understand what the difference is. You can get some of the idea by watching Senior Corps. But still, not the same. Mostly it’s because our poor old bodies can’t do what we did back then any more. But, some of the Junior style from today has crept into Senior corps. But go stand in front of a Senior group that still plays on G keyed bugles. A large one, if possible. Ouch! Hurts so good!

      Cathy
      Red Headed Sop
      Lead Section & Soloist
      Black Watch 72-78
      Class A Champs 1978

  5. i agree with bones girl…marching has changed my life forever and if i could do it the rest of my life, i wouldnt miss a beat to sign up.

  6. I agree with PhantomPhan about hopkins and the cadets. I marching in the early 90’s when such things like mics and narration being put on the field wouldve made the judges instantly scream DQ!!!

    hopkins is a pathetic, egotistical, self serviant wanker that needs to pack it in and let DCI be DCI without the Broadway amplification or Mr. Rogers Story Time narrations.

    I actually got a hold of some music from now and compared it to what was played when I marched. I only have 3 words regarding it……..TOO WATERED DOWN!!!

    When I marched we could legitimately call DCI Marching Musics Major League because the Corps only took the best of the best, if you couldnt play what the Caption Head wrote then it was simple….you got cut. If you could play it, you got a contract. Now with the watered down sludge being played, a 7th grader could get a contract if he had a decent sound.

    1. Nothing being played by any section in today’s drum corps is watered down in comparison to corps 20-30+ years ago. Don’t flatter yourself. You can’t do what kids today do and you can’t design what designers today do- or you would. But since you cannot, let’s resort to bashing and complaining. 👍 #youareasadbitch

      1. Checkout 1979 finals: 3 of the top 12 corps played “Children of Sanchez” – only one corps didn’t water down the low brass intro.

        1. The corps I marched with in 1979 also played “Children of Sanchez”. We didn’t water it down. We also didn’t make finals. 🙁

          1. This dude says look it up, from 1979, just knowing it’s on YouTube. But is it? Hahahaha

            That’s like saying I’d rather have a 1979 car than a 2021 car. 🤦

          1. 3 corps in the same year playing the same shit?

            God I am thankful drum.corpsnhas evolved. As a judge…. no thanks.

          2. 1979 was also the year Blue Devils and The Cavaliers played “La Suerte de los Tontos” (I’ll leave it up to the reader to figure out which version became iconic)…

        2. 1979 – “Children of Sanchez”

          North Star (just after the opening fanfare) – https://youtu.be/UTk6Cph2q-c (they didn’t water it down)

          Blue Starts – Video of their finals performance not easily found (they tried to be creative with their watering, but anyone familiar with the piece could tell)

          Cavaliers (starts at 13:06) – https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=165079075495773 (the amount of watering is just embarrassing)

          The original: https://youtu.be/Xiddb08A4dY

          1. I marched in North Star.

            James A. Chappelle did not.

            I never claimed to have marched North Star and only a complete dullard would think anything I wrote would indicate such a claim was made. This particular comment thread has nothing to do with “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt, so maybe he should sit this one out.

            Also, “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt marched North Star in 1981. He had nothing to do with the 1979 corps.

  7. I just wish they would pick high schools that face freeways or at least highschools in more commercial districts and there are plenty of them in this area, but no they are playing for 13 1/2 hours a day in a school that is in a residential neighborhood! So, if you have small children that need naps, or you happen to work the night shift or should you have a migraine between the hours of 7:30 AM and 9:00PM and you want to lie down you might as well forget that because you here drums, cymbols and let’s not forget the trumpets and horns blairing in your house! Oh yes, an upper middle class neighborhood for four straight days! I do not understand why they would pick a residential neighborhood to turture, when there are plenty of schools in areas that are 25% residential and 75% commercial?

        1. Anything is possible. I mean, Howdy is still breathing air – albeit as a mouthbreather. That’s a miracle, too.

  8. oh poor and unfortunate person, whoever you are, if you think dci sucks you truely dont understand anything about marching bands or entertainment for that matter

  9. I think that DCI is wonderful and i marched in a DCA corps last year. I would be at the audition and playing for a corps if i had the money. I just can’t afford to march drum corps for DCI and if I could I would be there without even a second thought. It really is too bad that DCI is so expensive, maybe there would be more interest. I have never heard DCI live but I have heard the 5 consecutive DCA world champion Reading Buccaneers perform and I can only imagine how wonderful it would be if I could march DCI. I do not agree with the mics on the field either. The only reason they can get in with a decent sound is because if they want some amazing full sound, if twenty crappy players could play an extremely difficult piece and their sound quality was ok, I would rather take 20 people playing a simple piece playing it wonderfully.

  10. i dont think Hopkins is nuts..he is just getting old. drupcorps makes people crazy and hes been at it for like 40 years. however he has brought new ideas and show concepts that have yet to be matched. i doo agree with PhontomPhan. the experience i got from my first year in drum corps, with the reading buccaneers, was something ill always remember. something about the things these groups have to offer has gotten way better. and yea dci has gotten smaller, but all that happened betweed the 70s and not is the stronger groups got ahead. now theres colse and extremely exciting and entertaining shows that live up to our dci standards and brigh something new every year.

  11. I agree its not cool that the prices have gone up and there are less corps, but if you really think about it, its not ALL DCI’s fault. they contributed, first, the economy has been going down so it costs more to run a corps, and not everyone could afford marching once prices went up. I almost couldn’t afford marching open class last year. You can all yell at DCI as much as you want, and for some problems, they are to blame.. but the price part is hardly their fault. and because the prices went up, the number of kids who could afford it went down, and some seasons got cut shorter. Drum Corps is still an amazing program regardless. If you haven’t marched, do whatever you can to get in. There are lots of people who could join and afford it, but choose not to.. this money problem and shorter tours could be fixed if the number of people joining increased. Think about it… we know the problems, its up to us to fix them.

  12. I hate when old people try to complain about how much better DCI was back then. Sure there were a ton of corps back then, but all they really were, were a glorified marching band with no tone quality. Now a days there are 24 world class corps and they actually perform a show, with great music and difficult dril. It’s much more entertaining, much more difficult and its a major experience now

    1. but all they really were, were a glorified marching band

      That’s pretty much what older people think about modern drum corps …

      1. To be fair, the bitter old farts have always said that about newer drum corps (I remember some drum corps veterans from 60’s saying that about drum corps back in the 70’s).

    2. You really have no idea what you are talking about! Drum Corps were vastly more exciting and entertaining back in the day,particularly in the 70’s and 80’s. And I must disagree with your notion that modern Drum Corps perform at a higher degree of difficulty. The music has been watered down to accommodate the drill and the sometimes ridiculous choreography. Honestly, leave the dancing to the professionals.If I wanted to see ballet dancing I would go to the ballet. Horn lines and soloists don’t have the chops they used to(and they played with a valve and rotor) because they play it safe and boring! B flat horns are made for playing inside not outside. And lastly, the modern activity is dying on the vine. DCI draws only a portion of the audience it once did(a big reason why PBS no longer broadcasts the event). I wish you could have seen shows from the Golden Age of Drum Corps. You can watch old videos but unfortunately due to the inferior sound recording technology of the day it may not always be ideal.

      1. Check out the crowd reactions of reunion corps vs. modern drum corps. The reunion corps typically get a much bigger reaction from the fans.

      2. You literally cannot do anything the kids are doing now. You know how I know? Because you think today’s scores are watered down in comparison to half a century ago? Are you kidding? You must be….. those who can DO. those who can’t COMPLAIN.

  13. the truth is drum corps international (dci) sucks. they are all about making money. they lie to these kids making them into arrogant azzh0les that think dci is going to look good on their resume or get them a job. dci is a summer activity NOT resume builder. the people in it are very arrogant. you will hear stories about hazing, beating up other competing band members, roughing people up when standing at attention, etc. dci is a joke and all about money. of course the brainwashed dci members will say otherwise. of course the dci leaders who rake in money get to freeload of the system, fundraisers, etc will say otherwise. drum corps international (dci) sucks and is nothing more than a apple vs pc paradigm or status symbol. only the status of being in dci means nothing in life. how about going into med school or something meaningful with your life instead of marching around playing crappy music acting arrogant? and yes dci put all the local bands out of business. its all about money. i hope all of you past dci members have done something with your life and realize dci is nothing to boast about.

    1. Listen to this kid! Haha you sound like the kid who breaks down and cries for his mom in the bathroom stall after week one of spring training haha

  14. I am a former marching member of the Cavaliers from 1970-1973. I have read a number of these posts with great interest. Many of you have written about the good old days of drum corps, and how much better it was than some of what we see in drum corps today. There is a flip-side to this issue and both arguments have good points.

    In my opinion, drum corps today is not the youth-oriented activity it was in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s, period. There were a lot of drum corps in many given parts of the country back then because drum was not as advanced, sophisticated or expensive as it is today. Only a tiny fraction of the youngsters in drum corps back then were thinking of being music majors in college or music teachers afterwards. Drum corps was a fun activity, that took place on the weekends.

    To understand the flip-side and evolution of drum corps, look at the reason men like Don Warren of the Cavaliers, Gail Royer of the Santa Clara Vanguard, and Jim Jones of the Casper, Wyoming Troopers felt it was necessary to establish the Midwest Combine -forerunner to DCI. The program sponsors were the ones making the lion’s share of the money, even though the corps were the main attraction. Prize monies for the corps didn’t come close to covering their operating expenses, or their expenses for that particular contest (even when they finished in first place!). So in order for the corps to receive a bigger share of the proceeds, much of the infrastructure of the drum corps activity had to be changed: program designs, rules, judging concepts, prize money, and instrumentation.

    The militaristic program design requirements favored by the American Legion (AL) and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) gave way to the “complete show” concept. General Effect and crowd pleasing entertaining shows became the norm. The top-notch, big name corps took drum corps competition to a new level. Band musicians and music majors became more a part of the drum corps activity. Nation-wide auditions brought in the cream of the crop of young amateur musicians to these big name (and financially sound) drum corps. And the average kid, who used to dominate the ranks of small time drum corps, but could no longer meet the requirements of the modern-day Open Class drum corps, was left behind.

    It’s sad watching an under-sized, marginally talented corps, on the field trying to emulate the marching and music style of the “super corps” because is the new “norm” in the open class activity. It’s almost like watching Pony League baseball players trying to hit major league pitching.

    Well, today drum corps is more sophisticated and more entertaining. The levels of musicianship and individual talent is above and beyond the music and talent levels of the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s. Instrumentation has improved and corps performances contain more sophisticated drills. There is a down side to each side: In the good old days the corps made no money -but the average youngster could find a place in the ranks. In the modern day, there is a remarkably talented, entertaining and well-paid drum corps elite. Much of what was drum corps’ roots is now in its past. Is there any going back to the past??

  15. I agree with a lot of the criticisms of DCI as an “non-profit.” My question has to deal with where all the profits go. Just look at the merchandise. I know as a alum of the Seattle Cascades that money did not magically appear from some “non-profit.” The Cascades have a bingo hall, fund-raisers, booths, and fees for touring. I just want to know the business side of DCI, how much everyone is paid, where the money goes, etc.

  16. I have watched and participated in drum corp back in the 60’s and I must say, I would not really call this Corp of today a Drum Corp, some may like tit, it does have an audience but it is not Drum Corp.
    Call it what ever you want but not Drum Corp, PLEASE
    Give me the New York Sky liners, The Syracuse Brigadiers, the old Hawthorne Caballeros, the Sunrisers

  17. How do ya feel about it now? DCI today or what I call musical theatre on a field really sucks. Bring back marching, start playing again, quit with pre-recorded music, and wear uniforms. DCI is now embarrassing…

  18. I love how most of you Boomers and Trash Talkers won’t even put your real names. That must be a thing assholes do? 🤣🤣🤣

    1. Whatever you do, do not put your real name on here for Heather Kelch to threaten to shoot you, stalk you, call your family members, libel you, etc.

      1. Only folks like Howdy here. When he posts pics of your young, single daughter’s home along with an address on every page he’s not blocked off of, he gets to be threatened with his life. Even the police said so. 😁

        Then when he thinks you live somewhere, but they are your owned rental properties, he harassed the tenants. I have properties all over the country. He tried and tried and tried to get to me. Poor Baby…. hasn’t been able to touch ME. If he comes within 12 feet of me, that will be his last moments on Earth. (Police protected.)

      2. Michael HOWDY I LOST THE CASE Schmidt L.T.D. (SACS regionally accredited douchebag and ATS accredited doctorate in beastility ) says:

        No turd, Just you… Just YOU…

    2. I wish we could.post screenshots. Howdy’s friends count is blurred so noone can confirm that he has like 71 friends, if that.

      His BEST friend turned on him in court during his federal fraud and harassment trial. Haha… that says bunches.

      Mine, for reference, clearly shows 4,778.

      Sorry BooBoo. You do not win. 🤣😉

  19. Michael Schmidt L.T.D. (The one between James and Michael who hold a SACS regionally accredited and ATS accredited doctorate) says:

    Heather is NOT a DCI judge.

    Even if James does not like me – get a clue: nobody likes you

    Re: Get A clue YOU DO NOT KNOW ME

    I have thousands of friends , getting close to my max 5k FB friends limit

    You have never met me (lucky me)

    1. Not getting close.

      I never said I was a DCI judge. You put words in people’s mouths. Well, not mine and not today. I will know those words and your cheap dentures out of your filthy mouth.

      *I judge indoor. Find someone that aregues with that besides you.*

      Yes you like to post pictures of children, who does that? Pedophiles that’s who. Those were not your students and you had no relation to any corps they marched in. Therefore you are obsessed. Are you mad Particia is honking on Bobo at work and not having your crippled ass on bed? Poor thing. The attorney that dumped your case (Sliz) was right, she should divorce your pathetic ass and put you on the street. I’d give her every penny to divorce you and see you living in a box somewhere. That hate didn’t come from me learning your name, it came from your constant harassment and doxxing of me and my kids. I know you have a shit relationship with yours, but most of us would die for our kids. It just so happens I’d kill you over mine, too. #pewpew

      1. Michael Schmidt L.T.D. (The one between Heather and Michael who hold a SACS regionally accredited academic accredited doctorate) says:

        Heather Kelch your outrageous lies are not even worth responding to.

        Nobody believes you.

        Everyone can clearly see the time stamps, and that you clearly STALKED me in here like you have so many other places. Plesase, for society’s sake get the counseling that you so badly need.

        GET OUT OF MY LIFE!!!!

        I have no time for losers who lie.

        Go find someone else to lie about and stalk on the internet, you are not worth my time.

        For the rest of you do not give this unstable and dangerous person your real name.

        1. Well, I just tried calling you. You are a pussy. You call people ahit on the internet but refuse to settle it in person.

          A literal whining, bleeding vagina.

          Why not answer? You kook.

          Like ANYONE listens to you. Unblur your friends count. Liar. Jump in a messenger chat, fuckface.

    2. I have thousands of friends , getting close to my max 5k FB friends limit

      It’s funny “Dr.” Michael E. Schmidt thinks that’s some sort of accomplishment. He also doesn’t know there’s easy way to get around Facebook’s 5K friend limit.

      1. It’s got to be true, first. However, he has his Friends count blurred so noone can see he is lying.

        Mine isn’t blurred, feel free to meander….

  20. I actually think I am getting close to my limit, but not like in Howdy’s fantasy world.

    You can see my numbers. Howdy has is blurred. Hmmm…..🤔🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

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