2018-02-21 / Front Page

JCMS/HS Band is marching forward


Members of the Jenkins County Middle/High School Band are shown. 
(Photo contributed) Members of the Jenkins County Middle/High School Band are shown. (Photo contributed) The Jenkins County Middle/ High School Band (JCM/HS) is well on its way to becoming a fine musical and educational organization. Building on solid fundamentals taught by former directors, Ms. Wilkinson and Mrs. Stephanie Adams, the band is moving forward to become one of the strongest programs in the region as proven in their appearance in local competitions.

Band Director James Mc- Bride will complete his 21st year as a band director this year. He began his career at Emanuel County Institute in 1997 where he organized the school’s band. In 2013, he moved to his hometown of Quitman and began teaching in Jenkins County in 2017.

He has also been working with the 116th Army Band since his college days in 1993.

“I am currently the ISG but plan to take an administrative step down to better accommodate my responsibilities as a teacher,” Mr. McBride said. He also acknowledged Principal Rob Gray’s “graciousness” in allowing him to perform his duties with the Army.

He said that his goal is for the JCM/HS band to become an organization which fosters 100% positive behavior and great work ethics.

“I love that many students are anxious and hungry to do something great. Equally as much, I love the positive atmosphere established by the staff and faculty at JCM/HS,” said Mr. McBride.

He also feels that the band has been climbing steadily upward to reach this goal.

“As my structure of basics is built into the program, learning will become easier and more fun for the students,” He said. “I want to make a positive impact on my community. I can think of no better way to impact the community than through its children and my love of teaching music,” he said.

Under Mr. McBride’s direction, the band is currently conducting a fundraiser project. The band is selling cake coupons in connection with Dairy Queen (DQ) of Millen to raise money for band expenses. Anyone may buy a coupon for $20 from a band member or parent, redeem it at DQ for an 8-inch round cake of their choice. The band receives all the proceeds from the sales and the coupon does not an expiration date. Purchasers have the option to upgrade their purchase at DQ. This project will conclude Feb. 23rd.

“Taking trips, instrument repair and purchases, food, awards, and sheet music purchases are all very expensive and play major roles in keeping the band functional and fun. Without money to purchase these items, the band would shrivel and this positive entity would fade,” Mr. McBride noted.

Mr. McBride called attention to the fact that the band has several upcoming events and encourages the community to come out and support them.

On Wednesday, March 7th, at 10:30 a.m. the band will perform at the Statesboro High School Auditorium. Friday, March 30-31 the Spring performance trip to Wild Adventures will take place and Thursday, May 10th, at 7 p.m. the Spring Concert/Band Awards night will be held.

When asked if he would describe the band in three words, Mr. McBride replied, “They are awesome!”

(Mr. McBride was interviewed for The Millen News by Emily Suggs.)

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