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About Covina Concert Band

Youth Outreach Program

A short poem inspired by our Mission Statement
Bob Praeger

Dueling limericks
Bob Praeger & Bill Lang

A letter to our growing list of friends
Bob Praeger

A True Time-Honored Tradition
Jim Caldwell

The Universal Language Spoken Here – The Covina Concert Band
Jim Caldwell

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The Youth Outreach Program

The Youth Outreach Program of Covina Concert Band extends an invitation to young musicians that are currently attending high school at the sophomore level or higher. While the band does not maintain a separate performance group for youth musicians, we welcome qualified musicians to audition to become a regular member of the Covina Concert Band. This program provides young students a venue to observe and interact with more advanced musicians.  Playing alongside experienced band members provides a growth experience for the younger musicians and a mentoring experience for the regular band members. Also, youth musicians are often featured in solo presentations during one or more of our public performances throughout the year. Please consider visiting us at one of our Monday night rehearsals as we continue to deliver the joy of music.

Please contact us for more information.

 

 

A short poem inspired by our Mission Statement:

Instruments Don’t Make Music; People Make Music.
© 1998 Robert C. Praeger

 

Think of the trombones,
And of saxophones.
With no players to wake them, there’s no music, not even a sound. 
A drum-set with a snare;
Clarinet if you care.
They stay in their black cases, quiet and still, when no one’s around.
Hear no chords from marimba,
Or low tones from a tuba.
With people there’s some action, someone to wield our maestro’s new stick.
Get all that a truck can carry
Every tom, drumstick and bary
It still takes us all who care, to deliver the joy of music.

 

 

Dueling limericks

"A Man From Covina" by Bob Praeger

There once was a man from Covina.
His horn had that age-old patina.
He polished it grand,
Then tried for the band,
And now plays in Covina’s arena
.


"A Man In The Sun" by Bill Lang

There once was a gathering in Covina
To find out what the hell’s a patina.
It led to a bum
Who sat in the sun
Selling polish & rags & a cleana


 

A letter to our growing list of friends

May 20, 2020

Dear Friends of Covina Concert Band,

Thank you for your continued interest in the success of Covina Concert Band.  We are proud of our success.  One source of that pride comes from knowing that we are not dependent on tax money, and that our primary support comes from patrons who are free to vote with their dollars for any organization they deem worthy.  We are also blessed with our 64 year history with The City of Covina Parks and Recreation Department and their in-kind contributions; this is part of the Legacy of Charles King, founder of the band in 1956. 

You may know of my thoughtful saying “In times of change some things need to stay the same”.  This year many things, sadly, cannot stay the same. 

The Band has entered a grand pause, a musical term created to silence the band for a short period of time in a music composition with the duration interpreted by the conductor.  This time our grand pause duration is to be determined by the response to the coronavirus outbreak, not the conductor.  However, this duration provides an opportunity for us to make improvements to the Band.  Our musicians continue to improve their musicianship by practicing at home without our usual weekly Monday evening rehearsals.  Perhaps the band and Twist of Orange, the swing band of Covina Concert Band, can resume normal operations in September.

The response to the coronavirus outbreak has resulted in the biggest disruption to life in America since World War II.  Government officials have closed schools, churches, and shut down scheduled major events.  The traditional Covina Concert Band events have been canceled.  The annual Forest Lawn Memorial Day Observance and all events in Covina Park are canceled.  The 4th of July Breakfast-With-The-Band, our pancake breakfast fund raiser, is canceled.  The Band’s Thursday evening summer concerts in the park are canceled. 

The cancellations cost Covina Concert Band dearly.  Our musicians have not rehearsed as an ensemble for months; the missing comradeship has many of us disappointed and depressed.  The summer evening events in Covina Park normally draw happy crowds that choose to support the Covina Concert Band Snack Bar, our main fundraiser.  The Snack Bar income the Band depends on will not be coming in this summer. 

Some things do stay the same:  Our monthly overhead exists.  Our Director/Conductor, Dan Glass, remains on the payroll; Dan has been working behind the scenes coordinating with the City of Covina to help keep our Band the Covina icon that it is, and he also is preparing for future concert programs.  Our insurance carriers are continuing to get the premiums they deserve.  Our membership in the Covina Chamber of Commerce is maintained.  We continue to improve our music library with new acquisitions.  We continue to maintain our band and snack bar equipment.  These expenses and more are paid for with donations and fundraisers only. 

Over recent months, we’ve seen Americans come together and lend each other a helping hand.  Today, I’m asking you to give Covina Concert Band that same helping hand.  The survival of the Band depends on your generosity right now.  Covina Concert Band has been an active 501(c)(3) California non-profit corporation since 1975 and donations are tax deductible. 

Please provide a donation to the band and become a recognized patron of Covina Concert Band.  With your help we can come out of this grand pause greater than before. 

-Robert C. Praeger
Covina Concert Band Corporate Board President

A True Time-Honored Tradition
By Jim Caldwell

        It’s no secret that we Americans over the years have experienced a slow erosion of the time-honored traditions that characterize our community life. The Helms Bakery truck whistles no more; the melodic beckon of the ice cream man is almost a relic of the past, right there with the “milk man”.  Say what???

Traditions are important to our lives…

        It goes on…the disappearance of the door-to-door salesman—Fuller Brush and Watkins haven’t rung the doorbell in 30 years.  Our children are no longer “turned loose”, unencumbered to play away the day, their appearance at the “dinner table” (another fast-fading stalwart) that evening never in question.

        Kids don’t throw newspapers from bikes, “collect” at the door or sell Girl Scout cookies at our front porch.  We have morphed into enclaves of ever-higher fences and cinder-block walls—with garage doors opening just high enough to swallow us whole.

        The Elk, Moose and Lions Clubs are on the Endangered Species List—even bowling night has a couple strikes against it.  Ice cream “socials” and pops concerts are fading into the woodwork.  Folks wonder exactly who it is that lives next door.

But—there IS good news!

        One true time-honored tradition remains among us!  The Concert in the Park thrives right here in our own backyard!  

        Thanks to the wonderful support of the City of Covina, along with the Friends of the Covina Concert Band, this summer offers a chance to plan your escape from housework, yard work, and summer school homework.

And here’s how…

        You’re invited to come on out to Covina Park on a warm, summer evening.  It is there, at the band shell, that you’ll feel the soothing musical strains envelope you as you ‘let go’ and experience the magic.  You’ll be transported to a simpler time—a tranquil place.

Like no other…

        “Wow! That was one of the finest concert bands I have ever heard”, remarked an enthusiastic attendee after vocalist Nannette and the Covina Concert Band completed their compelling and passionate rendition of A Tribute to Judy Garland at the recent Southern California Band Festival in Poway, CA.  Hearing constant accolades from an appreciative audience is nothing new to this very talented group of musicians.

A “Symphonic Powerhouse”, a rich tradition.

        Over the years this small nucleus of good players has grown to a “symphonic powerhouse” of over 60 members.  The talented ensemble consists of college music majors, music teachers and band directors—as well as musicians from all walks of life who come together to combine their love of music with a dedication to performance at a high level. 

        Built on a rich half-century of history and tradition, the Covina Concert Band has achieved a unique sound and a mastery of a diverse musical repertoire, enjoyed by all that experience this unique blend of musicianship.

A treasure in our midst!

        This summer, the CCB will be performing for all of us at the Covina Band shell in Covina Park from 7:30 to 9 every Thursday evening.  You’ll find they’re the sure cure for “iPhone-itis”, “The Maalox Factor”, “24/7 Kid Schedules” and the non-stop “Errand Runaround”.  They’ll provide you that rare chance to decompress, relax and reinvigorate by enriching your stomach as well as your mind – to eat, drink, kickback and hear a big band tune, experience a Latin rumba or an “impossible-to-keep-your-feet-still” Sousa march.  

Park the iPad, placekick the iPhone…and do something unforgettable for and
                           with your family.

        Take our advice—come on out to the band shell, pull up a chair and re-bond with the family.  A novel concept?  Maybe.  But in the process, you’ll have an opportunity to introduce the kids to something called The Great American Songbook, or a Cowboy lament, maybe even a Duke Ellington big band blast or…….just plain enjoy The Sound of Music.

Like the best things in life—it’s free…

        The price is still right—and it’s an experience you and your family will long remember!  The Concert in the Park is one of the few remaining old-time community, musically-enriching traditions.  It’s ‘all things Americana’—and it deserves to be savored, preserved and treasured.  It’ll do wonders for your outlook—we guarantee it. 

The Covina Concert Band – Experience the Joy of Great Music!

Give ‘em a listen—they’ll reward you for it!

Thursdays at 7:30PM.  Covina Park, 310 N. Fourth Avenue, Covina, CA.

 

 

The Universal Language Spoken Here – The Covina Concert Band
By Jim Caldwell

Ahh, music…it’s been described as the great elixir for all that ails - the universal language – the ultimate attitude adjuster.  It brings young and old together with a diversity of sounds and styles absolutely unparalleled in this world.  It is one of God’s great gifts to mankind.  It has the power to erase a bad day and wipe a slate clean.  Music can change a life.

To make music – to listen to music – to experience music – is one of the great joys of being, and it needs to be celebrated.  For all the endless deadlines, the mailbox rife with bills, the rocketing gas prices, the nuclear work schedules and the incorrigible boss – music has an answer.  And, there is a group in our midst that has tapped into a veritable fountain of renewal for these maladies, and is serving up huge portions of musical invigoration and restoration to all the lucky ones that have discovered its riches.

The beloved Covina Concert Band – just down the street – is putting together serenity-producing, alpha wave-inducing, consciousness-seducing sounds that are guaranteed to wash away all thoughts to the contrary.  It is The Great Escape, and, if only for a two-hour concert, there is no equal.  In an instant, they can pluck you from the daily doldrums and transport you back to the Old West. They can put you on a dusty stagecoach, envelop you in a blockbuster movie, or drop you right in the middle of a utopian Camelot. They can hover you over John Philip Sousa’s band, put you in a front row seat for Glenn Miller, re-introduce you to The Shadow of Your (own!) Smile, or hand you the clarinet on the way to New Orleans for a little Dixieland Jazz.

They’ll be transporting you to great places like this and more this coming summer, for a cost of exactly – yes, zero.  Not a bad bargain…groups like our very own Covina Concert Band, under the baton of Tom Ridley, are time-honored, uniquely American and precious to our heritage, not to mention our mental well-being.  They are fast disappearing and we are lucky to have one of them in our own back yard.  We desperately need to take advantage of all that they offer.

This summer – stop!!!  Take a few moments to smell the roses and let your mind and soul bask in a little musical healing.  We promise you the Covina Concert Band will send you home with a snap in your step and a song in your head.

So pull up a chair, come on out under the stars this summer and enjoy some great instrumentalists.  Bring the family, have a picnic and make some memories – then close your eyes and let the ensemble transport you to faraway places, and in the process watch yourself restore, regenerate and rejuvenate!

The price is right and you will enrich the lives of you and your family – guaranteed! See you at the bandshell!!  We’ll be looking for you!!
-Jim Caldwell

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Last Updated March 09, 2019 11:33 AM