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Early U.S. Bands – Part 3


In addition to field music, the United States military also had bands that were used for ceremonial purposes and to raise soldier morale. Like field music, this tradition has its roots in European military practices. The first outdoor, or military, bands were made up of woodwind instruments. These bands, known as Harmoniemusik, primarily used oboes, horns, and bassoons. These instruments … Continue reading


Early U.S. Bands – Part 2


The Colonies Go To War

After the Boston Tea Party (1773), the British antagonized the colonists by closing the port of Boston. To improve their defenses and prepare for war, the colonies formed Committees of Safety and forced Tory militia officers to resign. Officers sympathetic to independence replaced the Tory Officers. The colonists also accumulated stores of military supplies and … Continue reading


Early U.S. Bands – Part 1


Pre-Revolutionary War

Prior to the Revolutionary War, colonists readily adapted to British military traditions and rapidly accepted England’s military ideas. They copied British militia organization, utilized British training manuals, and used British officers to drill their troops.

As far back as 1633, in the Colony of Virginia, drummers performed for marching practice during militia drills. In 1659, the Dutch supplied … Continue reading


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