'The Buzz' Blog
All the buzz about the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching and Basketball Bands.
- By Northwestern Bands
January 12, 2012 — EVANSTON, ILL. — Photo loving fans of the Northwestern University 'Wildcat' Marching Band are discovering the ensemble's new photostream on Flickr.
"We launched it just after the last home game," says the band's Director of Web Media, Daniel M. Reck (GSESP08). "Over one hundred official photos from the Meineke Car Care Bowl trip are being posted over the next few days."
Many of those photos were taken by Tom McGrath (C03), the Wildcat Band's Director of Photography, who was assisted by Reck during the trip. Both are NUMBALUMS.
"I started working with NUMB several years ago," says McGrath, who is also owner of TCMcG Photography, which has provided professional headshots for Northwestern students launching their musical and artistic careers. His images and videos have been used to promote the band on campus and the band's website.
As more social networks emerged, it was time to find a "broader way to showcase and distribute Tom's work," Reck says. The new Flickr-based stream was selected for its easy accessibility and social features.
"Fans can go out right now and start commenting on photos," says Reck. "In fact, they can also contribute their own favorite shots."
"HEY WHAT?", the 160 musicians reply.
"WHAT DAY IS IT?"
"IT'S GAME DAY!"
For the fourth year running, and the second in a row in Texas, the Wildcat band is performing in at a college bowl game. At 11 a.m., Northwestern University will kickoff on the gridiron against Texas A&M University. The teams both have 6-6 records leading into the game, which will be broadcast on ESPN.
For the band and the team, the day will start much earlier. Early risers in Houston will see an impromptu parade of purple and white as the Wildcat band makes its way down the street from their hotel to greet the team.
"We'll find a spot to warm up and say 'Welcome to Northwestern' to some unsuspecting Texans along the way," says Director of Athletic Bands Daniel J. Farris.
December 29, 2011 - HOUSTON, TEXAS - One thousand miles from home, clad in purple t-shirts and shorts, members of the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band still worked up a sweat as they rehearsed their fast entry... again.
The temperature at the Rice University stadium was a relatively balmy 54 degrees, compared to the usual teeth-chattering weather back home in Chicago.
"Okay band, we have just three more rehearsals and then we're doing this for real." The words of Director of Bands Daniel J. Farris echoed through the empty stadium as band members scurried to their next rehearsal positions.
With a compressed time limit for both the pregame show and the halftime program, the band is working hard to adapt to rapid-fire drill changes. The footwork is not the only thing changing in this post-season game.
December 28, 2011 — EVANSTON, ILL. — "Welcome back, everyone!" said Director of Athletic Bands Daniel J. Farris, as the members of the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band gathered on the indoor turf at Trienens Hall.
The band growled in excitement.
In just hours, they will board a chartered flight from O'Hare International Airport and fly to Houston, Texas, in support of the Northwestern football team as they look for a victory at the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas.
"It's very exciting to be going back to Texas," said drum major Michael San Gabino (Mu13). He conducted the band at its bowl performance in Dallas last year.
December 14, 2011 — EVANSTON, ILL. — "Spread far the fame of our fair name! Go, Northwestern, win that game!" sang Nick Arcos, a mellophonist from the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band, as he appeared on KHOU-TV's Great Day Houston program Tuesday. The purple-clad Northwestern fans in the television audience burst into applause and cheers.
Arcos represented his alma mater while competing against one, then two, contestants from Texas A&M University in a challenge to see which school's fans could better sing their school's fight song.
Host Deborah Duncan first introduced Bill, an Aggie fan, who could not find the words as a recording of the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band played.
"Any Aggie fans in the audience here? Come on down and help Bill out!" cheered Duncan. Soon, another fan joined Bill, and together they sang "The Aggie War Hymn" as A&M fans clapped along in tempo.
Then, Arcos was introduced, even wearing his Wildcat Band t-shirt, which read "NUMB 1911-2011."