A surprise at the Wind Symphony concert!

At Tuesday night’s Wind Symphony concert, just before the world premiere of Until Our Rest (commissioned by OU’s chapter of ΤΒΣ), Col Alan Bonner surprised Dr. Wakefield on stage with the ΚΚΨ Distinguished Service to Music Medal.

What is that, you may ask? According to national headquarters:

The Distinguished Service to Music Medal is the highest award presented by the Fraternity. It was instituted in 1963 to honor outstanding individual contributions to bands. The areas of recognition include: composition, concert band, marching band, instrumental music education, artist performer, industrial research and progress, contributing laymen, alumni achievement, and fraternity service.

Congratulations to Dr. Wakefield!

Below: Dr. William K. Wakefield accepts the ΚΚΨ Distinguished Service to Music Medal from OU ΚΚΨ chapter president Andrew Melvin and Lt. Col. Alan K. Bonner, USAF (Ret.), National Executive Director of ΚΚΨ and ΤΒΣ. (Credit: Valorie Wakefield/University Bands.)


The 2012 Fall newsletter is here!

Let the registrations begin!

The three-page 2012 OUBAA Fall Newsletter is now available for download in PDF format. This is the one we used to spend hundreds of dollars and dozens of hours mailing to everyone in paper format, but you can have yours now, even on a holiday weekend, just by clicking the link.

The newsletter includes the Homecoming 2012 registration form, but as is now custom, you can instead register online for Homecoming 2012, including dues, Homecoming registration, game tickets, lunch tickets—everything you need. What’s more, you can pay with your credit card or PayPal account, and you can do it today!

Registering soon is highly recommended. Quoting the newsletter (also now a custom):

You’ll want to order early if you’ll need a ticket in Section 36. These seats will be at a premium and we won’t be ordering as many ‘extras’ for large instruments this year like we have in the past. Because of this, don’t wait until the last minute ‘hoping’ we’ll have extras. Order early to be sure you get one!

It is critical that we get a count as early as possible. If you can’t pay by the 30th, let us know if you need a Section 36 ticket and we’ll work out the payment later if we need to. Email Ann, our treasurer.

On the bright side, tickets are significantly less expensive this year! Check it out.

Registrations are due before September ends. There’s a countdown clock on the home page if you need reminding. Online and mail-in registrations are now open, so don’t get off to a slow start and have Fox Sports announcers start questioning your talent. Register today!

Update: OK one of you should have told me that the “View Cart” button was missing. Fixed, I think.

Hello, human musicians!

It is I, the Web site, your happy funtime football season pal. And we are now two weeks away from Sooner Football. I know it’s true because Twitter said so:

Accordingly, I have added a countdown timer until Homecoming 2012 in the left margin of the home page (or on the very bottom if you’re viewing on some mobile devices), and the events calendar has been updated with this year’s football schedule, as of this writing. (I cannot promise that teams will not leave or join the conference at any time.)

The 2012 Pride of Oklahoma, 300 strong, is finishing the week of pre-camp as classes start on Monday, August 20. Your human officers should have a newsletter for you soon, complete with pictures and registration instructions and adverbs and all the things humans like in an OUBAA newsletter. I shall also endeavor to stay updated for your assistance and happy football times. Fight with heart and soul to reach the goal!

No, The Pride is not playing at the Olympics

Scammers are what they are, but I’d love to make sure they know they messed with the wrong people this time:

Charitable donors beware: a door-to-door fundraising effort claiming to benefit the university’s marching band is not affiliated with OU, the band director said.

[…] A south Oklahoma City woman has filed a police report after giving a donation to a solicitor who told her the “Sooner Marching Band” was headed to the Olympics to play on behalf of OU, according to a press release.

The woman said she was asked to write her check to the Rick Allen Fulfilment Agency.

If you see or hear of such contemptible behavior, please do as this woman did and alert the police. Believe me, if The Pride were going to London to play, you’d have heard about it here many, many months ago!

Join us on April 14!

If you subscribe to the OUBAA Mailing List, you already received a copy of the brand new OU Band Alumni Association Spring 2012 Newsletter.  If not, do not fear—just click here to get it!

In there, you’ll find an invitation for all dues-paying members to participate in the Red and White Game on Saturday, April 14.  How would you like to play your horn at an OU Football game from the Pride’s seats in the stands again?  Both current Pride members and OUBAA members will sit together in Section 29 to cheer on both squads for this annual scrimmage, which shall not be televised.  We have lunch if you want it, we have guest tickets for just $5, so make it a family outing!

To pay all your fees for this online (dues are per calendar year, so paying your 2012 dues now means they’re not due again for Homecoming 2012, which we currently expect to be sometime in the fall of 2012, conference alignment permitting), just click over to our online payment page.  (Or download the newsletter, write a check, and mail it in for a small discount—the choice, as always, is yours—but we think the online payment system via PayPal is pretty nifty so far.)

We’ll unlock the rah-rah music for registered attendees in a week or two if you need a copy. But food, football, section 29, inexpensive—what’s not to like? Register today!

Pay your 2012 dues now!

Did you know that OUBAA dues are for each calendar year? You’re ahead of me.  I really should pay more attention to those things, but I think we all know that ship has sailed.

Anyway, you can now pay your 2012 dues online. Members who are paid up in their 2012 dues can, this year, for the first time, participate in the annual Oklahoma Football Spring Game, better known to all of us as The Red and White Game. Dues-paying members will have an opportunity to bring their instruments back to Owen Field and play with current Pride of Oklahoma members to cheer on the student athletes, meet up with former players, and have lots of fun!

Details when they’re available, but the payment page is now open again for 2012 dues (that’s the only item on there, as that’s all we’re accepting right now), so take a few moments to get the opportunity to cheer on spring football! The game will not be televised, so if you want to see it, you’ll want to be in the stands—and if you’re in the stands, shouldn’t you be playing Boomer? Of course you should!

Rah-rahs and iTunes Match


If you own the 2004 Rah-Rah CD, use iTunes, and have signed up for the $25/year iTunes Match service, there’s a hidden surprise for The Pride in there: extra royalties! Part of that $25 fee goes to pay artists a very small royalty every time you play a song covered by iTunes Match even if you owned the physical CD and didn’t buy the music from iTunes.

I’m not suggesting that you spend the money on iTunes Match if you weren’t going to, but if you have, be sure to add the Rah-Rah CD to your iTunes library so that when you play it, even on your iPhone or iPod or whatever, The Pride gets a tiny extra royalty. And if you don’t have it, you can buy it from iTunes or other fine purveyors of legitimate online music. Rah-rah!

Things people want to know, part 3

I know I was going to share search engine queries more often—terms that people enter in Google or Bing or Yahoo or whatever that leads them to our side—but then people stopped asking interesting things. The vast majority of search engine queries revolve around three topics:

  1. OU Alumni Band information (hey, that’s us!)
  2. Information on present and past twirlers
  3. People looking for rah-rah sheet music (sorry, folks, but the arrangements used by The Pride of Oklahoma are their own, protected by copyright, and not freely available.  Contact University Bands for licensing information.)

Nonetheless, looking back 30 days, I find a few interesting things, with the caveat that my definition of “interesting” is perhaps wider than a normal person’s.  Here’s a few:

  • Dig in and fight for the Red and White of Oklahoma
  • We march down the field with our heads held high, determined to win every battle we’re in
  • O.K. Oklahoma fight song lyrics

Most of you know that the first two requests are partially an answer to the third: those are the lyrics to O.K. Oklahoma, the 1939 spirit song written by Fred Waring for OU.  You can find the lyrics and more of the story on the page I wrote in 2004 for the song’s 65th anniversary, O.K. Oklahoma at 65.

  • Pride of Oklahoma Insight Bowl performances
  • [several other similar ones]

Some queries correctly looked for “Horton Productions” for this, run by fellow Pride alums Matt and Pat Horton (or perhaps the other way around).  They segregate their several business ventures into many different URLs, and this is the one you want for 2011 Pride of Oklahoma performances on video. That includes the Insight Bowl, homecoming pregame and halftime (including OUBAA pregame), and all the rest of the 2011 season’s halftime performances.  You also get instructions on how to buy the DVD, which you should do to conserve the Internet for everyone else.

  • Kyle Wiemar on Wheel of Fortune

Someone was really looking for this last month, as people were led to our site under several similar queries. On March 17, 2006, outgoing Pride drum major Kyle Wiemar appeared on the syndicated TV game show Wheel of Fortune and won, going to the bonus round and winning again. In addition to the above link from us, there was a story in the Norman Transcript about it (a page I’ve edited because I had Kyle’s name misspelled—sorry, Kyle!)

Trivia: Kyle’s friend in the audience for the bonus round was incoming Pride drum major Eric Shannon, who created (I believe) the “Boomer 5″ arrangement the Pride still uses on first downs! I have video of this on an old disconnected DVR in a room somewhere, but if it’s already on YouTube somewhere, I’d be happy to link to it.

  • Where can I purchase a rain poncho like the OU Band wears?

A nice lady asked me this in E-mail because she couldn’t find an answer anywhere, and I didn’t have on either.  After asking Mr. Britt, I’ve learned that the band’s current ponchos, the ones carried on the back in poncho packs, are a custom-made band uniform item and are not for sale to the general public. Sorry—they are cool, so maybe the manufacturers will make them available someday.

That’s about it for the search engines. What’s been on your mind?

What did you think of “Band Bedlam?”

Update 28 December: Be sure to click through and read comments from OETA’s Bill Perry about Band Bedlam DVDs, rebroadcasts, and the use of previously unbroadcast footage in OETA’s Gallery in January 2012!

Consider this an open thread for your thoughts on the OETA show or other issues of this BEDLAM week.  Comment away! (No registration required.)

Merry Christmas from OUBAA!

The timing of the season usually doesn’t give The Pride opportunity to play Christmas (or even holiday) tunes, but a rare 1989 concert in Tulsa late in the season provided just such a chance. From that concert, introduced by none other than George Ryan, here’s Leroy Anderson’s classic. Please enjoy with the warmest wishes of the season from all your friends at OUBAA—we’ll be back tomorrow with news of the Insight Bowl trip and where to see the 2011 Pride of Oklahoma!

Pride Sleigh Ride (1989)