2019 Instructional & Administrative Staff

OUR STAFF MEMBERS BRING YEARS OF SUCCESSFUL TEACHING EXPERIENCE AT ALL LEVELS TO CHATTANOOGA INDEPENDENT.

WE HAVE A UNIQUE BLEND OF SKILLS AND PERSONALITIES THAT ALLOW US TO CREATE A POSITIVE ENVIRONMENT FOR PERSONAL GROWTH AND COMPETITIVE SUCCESS.

 

 
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MJ AIKEN • FUNDRAISING COORDINATOR

 

MJ is from Birmingham, AL and is a graduate of Jacksonville State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Since graduating, MJ has been working as a pediatric emergency nurse in the Emergency Department at Children's of Alabama. MJ has been a
long-time fan of the marching arts and is excited to help support staff members and performers of Chattanooga Independent for the 2019 season through fundraising organization.

 

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DYLAN BAILEY • FRONT ENSEMBLE TECHNICIAN

 

Originally from Panama City, Florida, has been involved in indoor percussion since 2008. After four years with his high school WGI group playing Quads and Snare, Dylan marched Quads for two years at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and one year as the Drum Major. Dylan played Quads for Chattanooga Independent in 2012, and Marimba 2013-2016 while teaching battery for McMinn High School, and front ensemble for McMinn

Indoor. Dylan also taught battery and front ensemble for Soddy Daisy High school before moving to Johnson City, TN to study Exercise Science and Physiology. He currently is the Percussion Director for USBands/BOA band, Sullivan South High School and Sullivan County Indoor. Outside of teaching front ensembles, Dylan works in Physical Therapy and with a leadership training organization while pursuing a Masters in Kinesiology. This will be Dylan’s second year teaching at Chattanooga Independent.

 

 

JONATHAN BEAVERS • VISUAL DESIGN

 

Jonathan Beavers is a freelance drill/show designer and choreographer currently living in Nashville, TN. He attends Athens State University where he will receive a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management and Small Business/ Entrepreneurship.

Jonathan was a member of Music City Drum Corps in 2011 as well as the 2014 Silver Medalist Bluecoats Drum Corps, where he received the award for being the Visual Performer of the Year. He was also a member of the 8-time World Champion Music City Mystique Indoor Drumline from 2012-2015 winning 2 silver medals, 1 bronze medal and a 4th place finish.

Jonathan is currently the Visual Coordinator at Siegel High School, a consistent BOA Regional Finalist. He also works with Fred J. Page High School, an 8-time State Champion Marching Band and has worked with various other high school marching bands including Bob Jones High School and Father Ryan High School. Jonathan is currently on visual staff with the Bluecoats Drum Corps and has also worked on visual staff with Music City Drum Corps. During the indoor season, Jonathan has worked with Music City Mystique as well as various other high schools and independent drumlines in the southeastern region.

Jonathan has designed and/or choreographed for multiple groups including Music City Drum Corps, Fred J Page High School, Bob Jones High School, Austin High School, Momentum Independent Indoor Percussion, Station Camp High School, Hillwood High School, Independence High School and Blue Springs South High School.

 

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HOLLIE JO CARR • ASSISTANT DIRECTOR

 

Hollie Jo Carr is a percussionist and educator from the North Alabama area. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Instrumental Music from the University of North Alabama, with a focus in percussion. She has taught front ensemble and percussion sections in the local area.  

During her time at the University of North Alabama she was a member of the Percussion Ensemble, Percussion Orchestra, World Percussion Ensemble, and the Pride of Dixie Marching Band. She has had the opportunity to study with Dr. Tracy Wiggins, Lauren Teel, Luke Shreve, Brennan Davis, and Dr. Brian Cheesman.

Her WGI and DCI experience includes 2016-2018 with Chattanooga Independent Percussion Ensemble and 2017 with Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps, as a member of the front ensemble in both groups.

Hollie was apart of the Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps Administration for the 2018 season and is continuing her work there for the 2019 season.

While not being involved in the marching arts, Hollie pursues her other passion as an artist and photographer.

 


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SARAH DICKEY • FRONT ENSEMBLE

 

Sarah Dickey is a student at Jacksonville State University where she is majoring in Music Education. She has been a member of the JSU Front Ensemble since 2015 and has also performed with the JSU Percussion Ensemble and Chamber Winds throughout her college
career. Sarah began her marching career in 2014 when she played marimba for the Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps. She went on the play vibes for the Boston Crusaders in 2016 and marimba for
the Blue Knights in 2017. She marched Music City Mystique from 2015-2018 where she played synth, vibes, and marimba.
Sarah spent the summer of 2018 being a front ensemble instructor for Shadow Drum and Bugle Corps. This is her first season with Chattanooga Independent.

 

NICK DRAPER •  FRONT ENSEMBLE COORDINATOR


Originally from Savannah Georgia, Nick Draper has been involved in the marching arts since 2008. He has been involved with Chattanooga Independent since 2011. Nick is excited to return to the organization as the Caption Head of the front ensemble.

Nick is an active performer and has been involved with various groups such as, Chattanooga Independent, Music City Mystique (2017), Jacksonville State University Marching Southerners, JSU Chamber Winds, and Gadsden Symphony Orchestra. Nick has been a top 3 WGI World Championship finalist with Chattanooga Independent (2011,2012) and Music City Mystique (2017). He has been involved in various clinics where he has been taught by and performed with Mark Ford, Blake Tyson, Clint Gillespie, Andrew Lynge, Tony McCutchen, and Patricia Nagle of the Conservatoire de Paris just to name a few.

Nick currently resides in Jacksonville, Alabama where he is finishing his Undergraduate degree in Criminal Justice and is section leader for the Marching Southerners front ensemble. He spends his days happy with his dog Buddy and his girlfriend Paula.

 

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MARTY FORE • BASS TECHNICIAN

 

Marty Fore is from Madison, Alabama. This will be his first teaching at Chattanooga Independent. Marty first started his drum corps career marching with Music City Drum Corps where he would spend two summers with the group in 2014-2015. He then went on to march with Music City Mystique in 2016 and 2017 where he was able to win the WGI World Championship with the group in 2017. He then went on finish out his career with Carolina Crown for their 2017 season where they finished 3rd overall. Marty has taught at several high schools is the Southeast including Bob Jones High School, Siegel High School, and Forsyth Central High School. Currently, Marty is living in Birmingham, AL pursuing a degree in Music Technology.

 

 

GABE FRY • BATTERY COORDINATOR

 

Gabe has had a love for drumming his whole life. From drum set lessons in the 5th grade all the way through high school band where he served as drum captain his senior year. He took his passion for the arts to college with him and at The University of Alabama he majored in Music Education. Through sharpening his craft as a student and performer, he played in front of hundreds of thousands of people as part of The Million Dollar Band. Gabe would also go on to play with Music City Drum Corps in the summer of 2011 as well as Chattanooga Independent in the winter of 2013. After ageing out, Gabe has taught at a number of different schools and organizations throughout the south. He resides in Nashville, working as an integral part of the McGavock high school music program and is excited to be working with and giving back to an ensemble that helped shape who he is today. Roll Tide and Pump It Up!!!

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LATRICE GREEN • BATTERY TECHNICIAN

 

Latrice Green attended Jacksonville State University, where she received a BA in Music Education with a concentration in percussion. Of her five years with the JSU Marching Southerners, she initially marched cymbals and later joined the front ensemble. In addition to marching band, she has performed with a number of other ensembles at JSU, including all three concert bands, percussion ensemble, steel band, jazz band/combos, and choir.

Her independent indoor drumline experiences include Atlanta Quest in 2013, CorpsVets Indoor in 2015, and Q2 in 2016 where she marched cymbals, marimba, and synthesizer respectively. These experiences allowed her the opportunity to teach at different middle and high schools in Alabama and Georgia, including Woodland High School, Baldwin County High School, Rudd Middle School, Pinson Valley High School, and Thompson High School.

Latrice is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society, the Alabama Bandmasters Association, the National Association for Music Education and Sigma Alpha Iota (alumnae). She currently lives in Birmingham, Alabama where she is the assistant director of bands at

Minor Middle School and assists with the Minor High School Band (Sounds of Superior) and drumline.

 
 

COLIN JAMES • FRONT ENSEMBLE TECHNICIAN

 

Colin is a graduate of Jacksonville State University where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Music with a concentration in percussion. At JSU he was a member of Chamber Winds, various jazz ensembles and combos, Latin ensemble and the JSU Steel Band. Colin was also a member of the JSU Drum Line (2012-2013) and the front ensemble (2014-2016). Currently, he is in his second year as percussion instructor at Heritage High School in Ringgold, GA teaching drum line, concert band and percussion ensembles. Colin also performs as a gigging musician playing drum set in Georgia and the north Alabama areas. As well as freelance work, Colin is pursuing work in writing and recording music. Colin is entering his second year working with Chattanooga Independent and currently lives in his hometown of Ringgold, GA.

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BLAKE LANKFORD • PERCUSSION ARRANGER // SOUND DESIGN

 

Blake Lankford is a percussionist, teacher, and sound designer in Florence, AL. Blake has been a performing musician for nearly a decade, with various ensembles and touring bands. He was a member of the Music City Mystique Front Ensemble for the 2010 (Bronze), 2011 (Gold), and 2012 (Silver) indoor seasons, and was a member of the University of North Alabama Wind Ensemble for five years during his college career, spending two of those years as the Principal Percussionist and a featured member of the Percussion Ensemble.

Blake has been a member of the education and design staff of several high school programs in the North Alabama and Middle Tennessee area, most recently with Columbia Central High School in Columbia, TN and currently with Siegel High School in Murfreesboro, TN. He also taught with Music City Drum Corps in Nashville, TN from 2013 to 2015, serving as the Front Ensemble Coordinator in 2014/2015 and working with Clarksville Audio Theater in their 2016 indoor season, as well as providing design and consultant services for various other independent marching ensembles in Tennessee, Alabama, and Texas.

Blake’s front ensemble writing, sound design, and program design has been a part of many successful programs in marching band, drum corps, scholastic and independent marching indoor, and concert indoor activities. His is approach is one that uses both acoustic instruments and electronics/effect contribution to create an “environment of sound” that fit and illustrates the mood, context, and desired effect of the show to the ear of the listener.

 

 

HIMANSHU MANGIA • VISUAL COORDINATOR

 

Himanshu will be joining the Chattanooga Independent staff for the 2019 season. He is an active music educator and visual designer in the Atlanta area. His professional marching career
includes being a member of several DCI/DCA corps such as Atlanta CV, Spirit of Atlanta and Carolina Crown. In WGI, he was a member of the 8-time World Champion Music City Mystique.
Himanshu spent three seasons with the group as a member of the quadline and served as a section leader. He has had the honor of performing at PASIC as a clinician with both Carolina
Crown Drum and Bugle Corps and Music City Mystique.

As an educator, Himanshu is the battery coordinator and visual designer at Forsyth Central High
School in Cumming, GA. During his time, the group has made WGI Percussion World Class
Finals and WGI Winds Open and A Class Finals. He was also a visual designer for the Lambert
High School indoor drumline when they made their first appearance in World Class Finals.
He has consulted and designed for several groups in Georgia, Tennessee, Texas and
Mississippi. Most recently, Himanshu was a member of the percussion staff for the Madison
Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps.

In his free time, Himanshu enjoys playing with his dog Maggi and collecting vinyl records.

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ERIC McCLENDON • PHOTOGRAPHER // DESIGNER

 

Eric McClendon acquired his BFA in photography & design at Jacksonville State University in Alabama. Having been trained in fine arts, his work ranges in medium and concept yet is always inspired by a deep-seated passion of music and its power to communicate. The concept of combining music and visual is certainly nothing new — yet in fact, these very different forms of expression are utilized almost every day in his personal work.

Eric has been involved in music making since the age of 5 and has performed in internationally acclaimed ensembles such as the Jacksonville State University Marching Southerners (2010-2013), Spirit of Atlanta (2012), and the Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps (2013).

He also works commercially as a freelance fashion/ portrait photographer as well as a freelance designer and illustrator.

He has been published most recently in Photographer's Forum as a finalist for Best of Photography and received IPA Honorable Mention in 2015. His work has been exhibited at the Gadsden Museum of Art, member exhibitions at the Society for Photographic Education (SPE) Conferences and RAW artist shows in Nashville, TN.

Eric currently resides there in Nashville with his soul mate - Emily - and two rambunctious felines - Stipples & Massimo.

 

ZACK MELTON • SNARE TECHNICIAN

 

Zack Melton, a graduate from the University of North Alabama in Florence, completed his Instrumental Music degree in May 2013. Zack has performed with multiple different musical ensembles ever since middle school. Always driven to all things musical he was self taught on drumset, rudimental percussion, and guitar. Throughout his time at college, Zack marched with Spirit Drum and Bugle Corps on snare drum for two summers. Also on snare drum from November 2010 through April 2011 with the WGI World Finalist and 7 time Gold Medalist Music City Mystique. Under the direction of Dr. Iain Moyer, Zack studied percussion solo repertoire including drumset etudes, four and two mallet marimba and vibe solos, timpani solos, small chamber works, and large percussion ensemble pieces. At UNA during his last two years he was the percussion section leader for the entire percussion education studio, marching bands, and concert percussion sections. He has composed and arranged various marching percussion arrangements for schools such as Deshler, Athens, Bob Jones, Decatur, Grissom, Brewer, Priceville, Hueytown high schools, Discovery middle school, and the University of North Alabama.

Since aging out of the competitive pageantry activities, Zack has been on staff for multiple independent groups including Forte Drum and Bugle Corps out of Dallas, Texas in the summer of 2012, Music City Drum and Bugle Corps out of Nashville for the summer of 2013, one year as a Battery Instructor for Lone Star Independent Arts Association, a non-profit independent indoor drumline from Houston, Texas, and was the Educational Director and Music Arranger for north Alabama's most recent independent indoor drumline in Momentum Percussion Independent. Mr. Melton has worked under and with educators such as the late Will Campbell, Keith Anderson, David Waters, Bryan Barley, German Baratto, Shane Gwaltney, Joe Hobbs, Mark Hunter, Mario Taylor, Josh King, Matt Grimes, Colin McNutt, Iain Moyer, Jason Palmer, Chris DeBerry, Dave England, Julie Davila, Hunter Stricklin, Tim Maynard, Carl Eppler, and Josh Nelson.

Zack now lives in Madison, and works with the Decatur Marching Band, the Bob Jones Band and Percussion Ensembles, the Grissom High School Band Program, the James Clemens marching band, teaches private lessons, and teaches middle and high school percussion classes at Westminster Christian Academy. Currently, Mr. Melton is attending classes towards a Master's of Arts in Education from the University of North Alabama and a Class A teaching certificate in the state of Alabama.

In his free time, Zack loves to hike, mountain bike, jog, spend time with his family, shoot pool, read, and play music.

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TYLER NEWTON • VISUAL COORDINATOR

 

Tyler Newton is originally from Trenton Georgia,  Graduated Dade County High School in 2015 .He has been active in teaching at many local high school Marching Bands and Winterguards in many Circuits, based out of Chattanooga, Atlanta, Knoxville, and Nashville. During the summer month Tyler spent all summer touring with Spirit of Atlanta as a Colorguard Technician.

Tyler Currently teaches two schools in the Chattanooga Area, Signal Mountain where he is the Colorguard Director and Heritage High School where he is a Colorguard Technician. In the past he has marched with his High school Fall guard and Winter guard, Gemini Winteruard out of Chattanooga, Attraction Winterguard out of Knoxville, Southwind Drum and Bugle Corps as captain, and Two summers with Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps. During the winter he marches with Paramount based out of Atlanta while teaching Signal Mountain Winterguard.

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JORDAN PITNER • CONSULTANT

 

Jordan Pitner is originally from Seymour Tennessee, where he studied music under Michael Carter and Tom Lundberg. In 2006, he joined the Memphis Sound Drum and Bugle Corps and became the tuba section leader before their 2007 championship season. Shortly after, Jordan began teaching private lessons at schools over the greater Knox County Area.

In 2008, Jordan joined the Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps for their historic summer. During his time at Carolina Crown, Jordan studied visual technique and design from Andrew Ebert and Leon May. He would march with Crown again during the 2010 season. Over the last five years, Jordan has spent his time as a private music instructor in several schools across Knoxville, Chattanooga, and North Georgia. He has also spent time as a visual tech for the Chattanooga Independent Indoor Drumline. This summer, Jordan was invited to be a clinician for the Fred J. Miller Summer Clinic Program. As a member of the program, he traveled all summer teaching both musicians and drum majors across the country. 

This year marks Jordan's third year with the Signal Corps Marching Band. In that time- the group has continued to experience growth and success- including numerous Class and Division Championships, as well as appearances in the Tennessee Division II State Finals each of the three years.

 

MICHAEL RIVERA • SNARE TECHNICIAN

 

Michael Rivera is originally from Crossville, Alabama and is currently an undergrad at Jacksonville State University studying Music Education. Before attending JSU, he attended Snead State Community College for an associates degree in Business. With 8 years of marching experience, Michael marched with Crossville High School, The Marching Southerners from JSU, Chattanooga independent, and The Southern Knights Drum and Bugle Corps. This will be his first season behind the scenes with Ci.

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STEVEN RODGERS • FRONT ENSEMBLE TECNICIAN

 

Steven is an East Tennessee native from Knoxville, TN. He was most recently the assistant band director at South-Doyle Middle and High Schools in Knoxville, TN. Previous to that, he was the percussion director for Farragut High School. Mr. Rodgers graduated from the University of Tennessee as Outstanding Senior in Music Performance in 2006, and went back and received his teaching certification in 2009. While at UT, he was a performing member of the Wind Ensemble (including their performance in Carnegie Hall), the Pride of the Southland Marching Band, Symphony Orchestra, Percussion Ensemble (including two performances at the Percussion Arts Society International Convention), and numerous jazz ensembles.

He toured the United States and Europe as a member of the World Class Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps from Toledo, OH in the Drum Corps International 2001-2004 seasons, and instructing and presenting clinics during the '05 and '06 seasons. Steve had the pleasure of working with the Spirit of Atlanta in the 2011 summer as well as the 2012 and 2013 seasons. Mr. Rodgers has studied and/or taught with Keith Brown, Mark Douglass, F. Michael Combs, Lain Moyer, Colin McNutt, Omar Carmenates, Chad Heiny, Chris Hestin and Mark Ford.

Mr. Rodgers is a regular performer with the Oak Ridge Symphony Orchestra, and has played numerous times with the Knoxville Wind Symphony, the Southern Stars Symphonic Brass Band and Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. As a member of ETSBO&A, PAS, MENC, and TMEA, he is active in teaching and adjudicating scholastic music ensembles in marching, winterguard, and solo and ensemble settings. He also arranges and composes for various marching bands, indoor drumlines and small ensembles across East Tennessee and the United States. In addition to teaching and playing "legit" music, Steve has also played and recorded with his psychedelic-rock/indie pop band Senryu, touring the US and playing festivals such as After the Jumpfest, Hottfest, and South by Southwest. When not making music, he is an advocate for public school education policy. Mr. Rodgers graciously endorses Innovative Percussion products.

 

LUKE SHREVE • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR 

 

Luke Shreve has been teaching at Chattanooga Independent since the 2014 season and is now serving as the Executive Director and Front Ensemble Coordinator. Luke is a graduate from Jacksonville State University with a bachelors in Music Education. He has taught multiple high school drum lines and front ensembles all over the southeast; both high school programs and indoor programs.

Mr. Shreve is currently teaching percussion classes at Ooltewah High School and Ooltewah Middle School. Luke served as a battery technician for Music City Drum and Bugle Corps during the 2013 season and returning to school as the front ensemble coordinator for the Jacksonville State University Marching Southerners.

Luke marched with this ensemble during CI's 2009 season. The following summer he started marching at Music City Drum and Bugle Corps from 2009 to 2012, all performing with the battery on snare drum. During his time in undergraduate studies he participated in Jacksonville State University’s Marching Southerners playing snare drum and marimba.  Luke also participated with the schools' concert bands for multiple semesters as a coveted principle player in the Wind Ensemble.

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JAMES SMITH • ENSEMBLE CONSULTANT

 

 James is currently the Program Coordinator and Show Designer for Ooltewah High School in Tennessee where he has been since 1982. His bands have been consistent finalists at BOA regional championships. James was a consultant for the BOA Grand National Champion Lassiter High School and was a visual consultant for the Jacksonville State University competitive winter color guard - “Center Stage” - in the early 2000's.

James’ other winter guard and drum corps experiences include instructing with the Pride of Cincinnati, Glassmen, Spirit of Atlanta, Ooltewah High School winter guard (World Finalist 1992) as well as consulting for many bands in the Atlanta, GA area.  He was also a member of the 1978 Madison Scouts.

His most recent accomplishments include visual and drill design for East Lake High School winter guard, the 2015 WGI Scholastic A Silver Medalist.

 

JEREMY SMITH • ENSEMBLE COORDINATOR // BATTERY ARRANGER 

 

Jeremy Smith is a composer, percussionist, and educator born and raised in Muscle Shoals, AL. During his time as a percussionist he has served roles on both sides of the drum as both a player and educator. Jeremy is an alumni of Muscle Shoals High School, Music City Drum Corps, and Freedom Indoor Percussion. He currently designs, arranges, consults, and instructs for multiple groups across the country.

In 2014 he served as the Battery Arranger and Battery Coordinator for Southwind Drum and Bugle Corps. From 2015-2017 he was a member of the Percussion Staff at Clarksville Audio Theatre and Music City Drum Corps. Jeremy currently serves as the Director of Percussion at Siegel High School and as Program Coordinator and Battery Arranger for Chattanooga Independent Percussion Ensemble.

Off the field Jeremy is a composer of chamber works, symphonic works, vocal works, soundtracks, musicals, and music for dance whose influences range from popular music to Bach. Described by SET Magazine as “One of the most unique and promising talents the Shoals has ever produced,” he has had a number of successes in his career as a composer. In 2015 he was the first ever composer to win the Shoals Symphony Solo Artist Contest with his work “The Fourth Wall for Symphonic Winds and Percussion”. He has twice been selected as a resident at Azule Artist Residency in Hot Springs, NC. In April of 2017 he premiered his work “The Singularity: A Modern Ballet” to sell out crowds in Florence, Al. December of the same year saw the premiere of “A Setting of the Text of the Mass Ordinary” a half hour musical setting of the Latin Mass. In April of 2018 his work “In 3 Short Movements for Flute Quartet” was performed at SoundNow Music Festival in Atlanta, Ga by the world renowned Perimeter Flutes. His latest work, a full length musical entitled “David: Beloved of God”, is set to start rehearsals at the beginning of the year.

Jeremy currently lives in Nashville, TN and performs the duties of C.E.O. for SouthCoast Music and Design, LLC. Jeremy is a graduate of The University of North Alabama where he received a degree in Instrumental Music with a focus in Music Theory and Composition and a minor in Philosophy.

 

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STEVEN STROM • AUDIO ENGINEER// BATTERY

 

Steven Strom is a percussionist and music education major currently attending the University of North Alabama. He has played on drumlines at the high school, community college, university, and NBA entertainment level. Before returning to school to pursue a career in teaching, he was a full-time structural welder. More recently, he has turned his focus to electronics and audio engineering. He is currently the head Audio Engineer for The Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps and is the Audio Engineer and Sound Designer for the University of North Alabama Marching Band. This will be his first season as the Audio Engineer for Chattanooga Independent.

 

 

SAMUEL GALIN TAYLOR • CYMBAL TECHNICIAN

 

Samuel Galin Taylor, a native of Tuscumbia, Alabama has been involved in the marching arts since 2006. Galin is currently in his last semester of study completing a Music degree at the University of North Alabama. This season marks Galin's first year with Chattanooga Independent. As a performer, Galin spent five years with the Pride of Dixie Marching Band at UNA. While a part of this group, he competed in the first ever Drum Line Battle hosted by PASIC, in which the group would go on to win.

His experience began with marching cymbals, but he spent two years in front ensemble - experience which would lead to his introduction to DCI/WGI. Galin was a part of the inaugural return of Southwind Drum and Bugle Corps in 2014, Atlanta CV Indoor World Class 2015, Atlanta CV Drum and Bugle Corps 2016, and just completed his DCA season with Atlanta CV 2017. As a teacher, Galin has been an active battery instructor and writer for numerous North Alabama high schools and a small contingent in the Mobile area.

During his studies at UNA, Galin has lead and taught numerous clinics focusing on cymbal playing, including the Yamaha Sounds of Summer clinic hosted the last two years. During the DCI/WGI seasons he has been an integral part of the teaching staff for Atlanta CV Indoor Open and Atlanta CV Drum and Bugle Corps as an inline tech. Currently Galin is the lead Cymbal tech for the UNA Pride of Dixie.

Galin is a current member of the National Association for Music Educators, Percussive Arts Society, and Tau Beta Sigma. Galin is a large advocate of Zildjian Products, Seavine, and hopes to spread his passion for Cymbal education throughout the Southeast.

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LAUREN TEEL • FRONT ENSEMBLE TECHNICIAN

 

Lauren Teel is an accomplished percussion performer, arranger, and teacher with experience across the USA. She is currently the Percussion Caption Head for the DCI World Class Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps, and the adjunct instructor of percussion at the University of North Alabama. She has served as Front Ensemble Coordinator for the BOA Grand Nationals Finalist Center Grove Band in Greenwood, IN.

In 2014, Lauren was selected to perform at PASIC in Indianapolis, IN, for Leigh Howard Stevens' clinic “Marimbists guide to Performing Bach”. She was a semi-finalist in the 2015 Great Plains International Marimba Competition in Oklahoma City, OK. In 2012, Lauren had the privilege of traveling to Chennai, India to perform for an audience of over 75,000 people with Oscar winning composer, A.R. Rahman. Lauren also appeared in the 2013 blockbuster, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, as a timpanist. While living in Atlanta, Lauren performed as a member of the NFL Atlanta Falcons Drum Line. She is a member of the entertainment group, The Wrecking Crew, based out of Atlanta, GA.

Lauren earned her M.M. in Percussion Performance at Indiana University. She earned a B.M. in Percussion Performance from the University of North Texas. Her studies have allowed her to study with renowned percussionists including Kevin Bobo, Steve Houghton, Michael Spiro, Paul Rennick, John Tafoya, Mark Ford, Christopher Deane, She-E Wu, Robert Schietroma and Ed Smith.

Prior to graduate school she held the position of Director of Percussion at Allatoona High School in Cobb County, Georgia, and also taught area percussion groups including Hillgrove High School, Centennial High School, Northgate High School, the Georgia Tech Marching Band, and the North Augusta High School in South Carolina. Lauren was also the Front Ensemble Technician for DCA Member Atlanta CV Drum & Bugle Corps for the 2013 and 2014 seasons.

While attending the University of North Texas, Lauren was a member of the 17-time PAS National Champion University of North Texas Indoor Drum Line. In 2008, the group won first place at PASIC and in 2011 they traveled to Europe for a special guest performance at the 2011 IPE Championships. She was a member of the 2009 and 2010 Phantom Regiment percussion ensemble, which received the 2010 Fred Stanford Award for high percussion, and of the 2011 Santa Clara Vanguard. Both ensembles were under the instruction of Paul Rennick.

In her spare time Lauren pursues her other passion of working with animals by volunteering at the Georgia Aquarium, Indianapolis Zoo, and with Indiana Canine Assistant Network as a certified service dog trainer. She is also an avid swimmer, trained lifeguard and certified scuba diver.

Lauren is an endorser of Marimba One and Innovative Percussion.

 

BEN G. WILLIAMS • SNARE TECHNICIAN//BATTERY

 

From Birmingham, Alabama, Ben G. Williams is currently finishing up his BA in Music Education from Jacksonville State University. He first joined the Chattanooga Independent team for the 2017 season as a snare technician and is now serving as the batterie coordinator.

With almost 10 years of marching experience, Ben is an alum of Music City Drum Corps, Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps, Doublestop Indoor Percussion, Vestavia Hills High School, The Marching Southerners, and Music City Mystique.

In addition, Ben has held both section leader and principle positions in several marching and concert band ensembles. Ben was a snare tech with Music City Drum Corps in 2016, and has worked with a many high school and middle school bands over the past five years.

 

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