In the late 90's, the internet wasn't yet as commonplace as it is now, so the way people shared ideas was very different.
The now-defunct International Association of Rudimental Drummers (I.A.R.P.) was a small organization founded by Dave Vose from Massachusetts. He'd send out a monthly newsletter with articles on rudimental drumming, and every so often (maybe once a quarter?) they'd include a cassette tape called The Sound Source. Cassettes in the mail were almost as cool as those floppy plastic records that would occasionally come in some issues of Modern Drummer!
I started writing the percussion book for the Santa Clara Vanguard in 1996 and was still rather young. Had it not been for JW Koester's faith in hiring me after a few years at the SCV Cadets, and a passionate, talented group of friends who joined me on the percussion staff during those late-90's, I probably never would have had the chance to hone this unique craft of writing for percussion. Those were fertile years both for the corps and for us young bucks on the staff looking to make a statement. I'm deeply grateful for that time.
During the 1997 season, the corps really started picking up some steam and I think that was around the time I really started finding my voice as an arranger. Dave from IARP had asked me to contribute an audio article for a 1998 edition of The Sound Source discussing my approach to arranging for SCV. What the members of IARP received was the cassette tape you see pictured here. It was an honor to contribute something to an organization whose membership had such a rich lineage of experience in this musical art form.
I'm feeling a little sentimental about those years and proud of what we did. So I recently dug into some of those old photos and scores (man...I've come a long way with my notation software chops!) and added them to the audio from the original tape. If not a more visual experience, maybe it'll add some pizazz to a young arranger trying to explain his approach.