by Steve McLean
All about the fun my Dad and I had drumming along to marches of John Philip Sousa!
|My Dad loved the marches of John Philip Sousa and had an LP collection of all of them that I enjoyed listening to with him on our home stereo console when I was a boy. My Dad's love of these marches was musically infectious to my young heart, and it wasn't long before I was totally enamored of John Philip Sousa too.
I fondly remember the two of us sitting together on the floor of our home's living room, finding makeshift items to use as drums, like round oatmeal boxtops, cigar boxes and kitchen knives, and drumming away to "Stars and Stripes Forever", "El Capitan", etc., as they took turns dropping down on the turntable to play. I think these early musical sessions with my Dad were one of the influences the Holy Spirit used to create a life-long love of music in my young heart and spirit, preparing them to receive and enjoy the gift for songwriting that He would one day give me. Marches can be so stirring, uplifting, and inspiring, and John Philip Sousa wrote so many of the best ones! One of my favorite movie musical romances is the classic musical biography of Sousa titled: STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER. Actor Robert Wagner had one of his early roles in this film as a young man who joins Sousa's band while romancing his daughter. In the storyline, this young man is assigned to play an instrument that Sousa invented named a "Sousa-phone". It's a GREAT classic musical biography, with all of Sousa's most popular march compositions in it. It you love marches, like I learned to love listening and drumming to with my Dad, you'll love this movie classic from the 1950s!