Gayle Ruth Crain, born August 19, 1941, passed away Friday, December 23, 2016. Those who had the privilege to know and work with Mrs. Crain throughout her life know that she is a force of nature – a passionate teacher, supporter, and organizer of that about which she feels most passionately. She is survived by her loving husband Richard, The Woodlands, Texas; and sons Scott, Chris, and Steven, of Texas, and their families.
I don’t remember exactly when I first met Gayle and Richard – it seems to me that they were always part of my life and work history with Bands of America from my earliest times in the late 1980s. It was probably while I was working at one of many Texas Band Association conferences; Gayle served on the Board of the Texas Bandmasters Association Spouses for seven years and is a Past President.
My fondest memories of Gayle are from her work as the coordinating assistant for the Bands of America National Concert Band Festival, now the Music for All National Festival. “Coordinating assistant” doesn’t feel to be like the best descriptor for her role in the creation and implementation of the Festival. She and husband Richard were the coordinators of the Festival – putting their hearts, souls, and talents completely into making sure that the Festival, from its launch in 1992 at Northwestern University and beyond, fully realized the vision of Bands of America and the musical icons who were part of its creation. The Festival today remains infused with their high standards, their vision, and the work and care they provided.
For her work on the Festival, as well as her other many contributions to music education, Gayle was inducted, along with Richard, into the Bands of America Hall of Fame in 2005.
On hearing of her passing, Eric Martin, President and CEO of Music for All, wrote: “My heart and prayers are with Richard Crain and his family. There are people, principles and concepts that have defined Music for All and Bands of America for me. Gayle and Richard Crain are amongst those people. Thank you, Gayle, for your quiet and principled witness by example, and to Richard for your leadership, encouragement, mentorship, witness, and, most importantly, friendship.”
My personal memories will always be of working with Gayle side by side (score organizing, anyone?), the sincere hugs “hello” and hearty laughs, no matter how hectic pre-Festival preparations might become.
Gayle’s many accomplishments, honors, and activities make me wonder when she ever found the time to do it all. I’ve included her biography below at the closing of this piece.
For now, I hope everyone who knew her will continue to be inspired by her example of hands-on servant leadership, and that all who read this will keep her family – especially her husband Richard who is one of the kindest and wonderful people I’ve ever known – in their thoughts as they process their loss during this holy season.
Watch Mr. and Mrs. Crain's Bands of America Hall of Fame Induction Video:
The viewing for our new heavenly angel Gayle will be Tuesday evening, December 27 at the Forest Park Funeral Home, 18000 Interstate 45 S, The Woodlands, TX from 6-8 pm.
The funeral service will occur on Wednesday, December 28 at Spring Baptist Church, 633 East Louetta Road, Spring, TX at 2:00 pm. There will be additional viewing time prior to the start of the service.
Richard and the family ask that donations go to a scholarship fund that will be created in Gayle’s name at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, Belton, TX, her alma mater, and where she served as Director of Alumni and Alumni president.
Gayle Ruth Crain, born August 19, 1941, crossed the Jordan Friday, December 23, 2016. She is survived by her loving husband Richard, The Woodlands, TX; sons, Scott and Chris, Kingwood, TX, and Steven, Houston, TX. Daughters-in-laws, Jennifer and Melissa, Terry Polovina; sisters, JoAnn Thompson, Garrison, TX, and Vicki Franze, Welborn, TX; Grandchildren, Lauren, Emily, Joshua, Jacob, Caroline, and EmmaKate; Cousins, Pat Baggerly and Sue O'Bannon, Belton, TX.
Gayle Crain earned the Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor with a major in Business and a minor in English. She was a member of Alpha Chi Honor Fraternity and Sigma Alpha Business Honor Fraternity and at the commencement was presented with the Outstanding Business Graduate award for having the highest four-year average in Business. She earned the Master of Business Education degree from the University of North Texas with a major in Business and a minor in Education and was a member of the Delta Pi Epsilon business education fraternity there.
Her teaching experience included teaching business subjects as a fulltime instructor at Temple (Junior) College for four years. She was promoted to Director of Financial Aids and Placement shortly before moving to the Houston area. While teaching at TJC, she supervised student teachers at Temple College for the nearby University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and also taught business courses at UMHB in the summer. After graduating from college and teaching only one year, she was asked by the UMHB Education Department to be the sponsoring teacher for a student teacher in her English class during her second year of teaching.
Through the years, Gayle has traveled as a sponsor with band groups to Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Japan. One of the trips was the Texas Baptist All-State Band and Orchestra to the Baptist World Alliance in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Before devoting her life to serving music education organizations with her husband Richard, Gayle Crain taught business, English, and journalism courses at several Texas colleges and secondary schools for 25 years. She was promoted to Chairman of the Business Department of the new Klein Oak High School after teaching at Klein High School for only a few months. She was asked by the principal to assist in interviewing prospective teachers. The department grew from three to eleven teachers during the three years she served as Chairman. She also taught as the Office Administration Cooperative teacher at three high schools in the Belton, Klein, and Spring school districts as she moved with her husband across Texas. For the Office Administration classes, she secured part-time office jobs for her students and visited their supervisors on the job each six weeks for a total of eleven years.
She received the Outstanding Occupational/Technical Teacher award for Spring ISD and was elected to the State Board of the Vocational Office Education Teachers Association of Texas and was elected Secretary of the State Board of the Office Education Teachers Association of Texas. Her administrative experience includes Director of Alumni Affairs at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, Director of Financial Aids and Placement at Temple College, and Assistant to the President of two Houston international corporations. In earlier years, she was co-owner of The Apple Tree, an antiques and crafts gift shop with stores in Belton and Salado, Texas, and did all of the accounting for that business.
While serving as the Lambda Theta Chapter Sponsor, Assistant State Advisor, and National Convention Secretary for Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Fraternity for junior colleges, Gayle was named to the Phi Theta Kappa National Hall of Honor. She also was elected President of the Alumni Association of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor for a term of three years, presiding over the Alumni Board meetings and planning and presiding over Homecoming during those years. During her years as a college student, she was elected as an officer of the College Council, the Business Administration Club, and the Luncheon Club, which planned college socials. She also was Elected Miss Temple Junior College. During her two years as a student at Temple Junior College, she was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa honor fraternity and worked as a report writer for the Retail Merchants Association (credit bureau) on a part-time basis. She served as President of the College and Career Class at her church while in college. She began her college experience with a full scholarship from the Kiwanis Club for her first year. She had not applied for the scholarship but was nominated by the principal of her high school.
Gayle Crain served as the Festival Coordinating Assistant for the National Concert Band Festival from its inception in 1991 until 2008, and she was inducted into the Bands of America Hall of Fame in 2005. Gayle served on the Board of the Texas Bandmasters Association Spouses for seven years and is a Past President. She was Associate Executive Secretary for Region IX UIL Music Contests from 1994 to 2006 and has provided bookkeeping and organizational support to the Phi Beta Mu International Bandmasters Fraternity since 1977. She was inducted as an honorary member of Phi Beta Mu at the International meeting at the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago in 2006.
Gayle was named to the Who's Who of Women Executives in the 1989-1990 edition, was included earlier in the Outstanding Young Women of America, received the Spring ISD Achievement award, and received several awards from UMHB, including "The Second Mile Award" for recruiting for the university. She was a speaker at a Charter Day (Homecoming) program, President of the Bell County UMHB Club, a member of the Alumni Board and numerous committees through the years, and Chairman of a major fundraising drive for the university.
She currently serves as the reporter for a monthly newsletter she publishes for the Joyful Age Sunday School Class at Spring Baptist Church. She also is both a reporter for and the editor of the 36-page SALT OF THE EARTH magazine, which is published on a quarterly basis for the Senior Adults departments of the Spring Baptist Church. The spiritual magazine includes both classes' news and individual reporters' devotionals. In past years, she taught children, youth, and adult Sunday School classes, assisted in Vacation Bible School, and was the Bible teacher for a children's choir.
Gayle grew up in a Christian family that included a grandfather who was a minister, a grandmother who was one of the strongest Christians she has ever known, an aunt who was a missionary to Korea, and parents who went with her to Sunday School and church every Sunday and took her to youth meetings. Though she can't remember when she did not believe and she walked the aisle when she was a child, she still went through a time of questioning-not of her God but of her own faith-when she was a young adult. That questioning led her to deeper study and a confirmation of her faith in God the Father, Who created us; God the Son, Who gave His life for us; and God the Holy Spirit, Who lives in us as our conscience and guide. Through the years as a teacher, she witnessed to her students in public schools from the first year she taught in the 1960's through the last year she taught in the 1990's. She believes that God led her to marry her husband of 55 years, Richard Crain, and together they have prayed and sought God's leadership in all walks of their lives. The oldest son is a deacon in the church, the sons' wives are workers in their churches, and the grandchildren who are eleven and nine years old have already prayed to accept Christ and have been baptized. Their five-year-old grandson began quoting scripture and praying out loud when he was four. Though Richard and Gayle lost their home and two cars to Tropical Storm Allyson in 2001 and two of their grandchildren have endured numerous surgeries by ages five and three, God has always been there to see through whatever life holds. The Crain family has indeed been blessed. God is good….all the time.
Here are details on the Visitation and Celebration Services for Tommy Smith of Houston, Texas, beloved Bands of America volunteer.
Visitation Service :
Monday Dec. 5 from 5 p.m.-9 p.m.
Settegast-Kopf Funeral Home
15015 Southwest Freeway
Sugar Land TX 77478
Tuesday Dec. 6
12 p.m.-1 p.m. Visitation
1 p.m. Celebration Service
Living Word Lutheran Church
3700 South Mason Road
Katy, TX 77450
Reception to follow.
From the family: In lieu of flowers please consider donating to the programs that were most important to Tommy:
Bands Of America
Houston Golf Association
First Tee of Houston
The ARC of Fort Bend County
Houston Rodeo Association
Wakeland High School Band
Tommy Smith, back row, left, with some of his fellow 2016 Bands of America Grand National Volunteers.
Band people often talk about their “band family.” In the days following the 2016 Bands of America Grand Nationals it became clear that “family” extends beyond one’s own band and school to all of us who are alumni, band parents, and boosters.
Just hours after Sophie Rinehart’s standout feature performance with the Castle Marching Knights of Newburgh, Indiana in their first BOA Grand Nationals Finals appearance, her life was taken in a tragic car crash, along with her father and grandmother. Her older sister was injured.
Sophie’s vocal solo and flute duet during Castle’s 2016 show had moved audiences all fall. Grand Nationals was no exception. It seemed everyone, from the 100 participating bands and their supporters to those watching online and fans in the stands, was talking about “the singer with Castle.”
When news spread online Sunday that Sophie had passed away just hours after her Finals performance and celebrating Castle’s 10th place accomplishment with her fellow band members, the band world expressed its shock and sadness.
Condolences began pouring in from band parents, students, teachers, and fans from the Grand National bands and fans from across the country and around the world. Sophie’s vocal solo performance was of Sara Bareilles’ Gravity; Sara herself sent an email offering condolences to the Castle band.
Personally, after sharing the sad news and Music for All staff’s own sadness on the Bands of America Facebook page on Sunday, I was riveted to my computer screen the rest of that evening, finding some small comfort in the thousands of shares and comments from band programs nationwide. #weareallcastle became a way to share the pain and honor Sophie, her family, the Castle band, and the Newburgh community.
Bands of America interviewed many band directors and students during Grand Nationals. When we asked Castle band director Tom Dean to select a student representative for us to interview, he brought Sophie to the set. To honor her memory, and share her special gifts with the world, we are offering this video with portions of that interview and her final performance.
Special thanks to Tresona Multimedia for helping us to secure the rights to allow us to include a portion of the performance, and to Hansen Multimedia for donating the production of this video.
We remember Sophie and her unforgettable performance in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Adapted to an indoor performance and clinic experience
Due to extreme weather conditions from Typhoon Songda, the Bands of America Regional Championship at Hillsboro on Saturday, October 15 has been adapted to an immersion experience indoors, where bands will perform for each other, receive independent clinics with all judges, and enjoy a Bands of America Leadership Experience with John Pollard and Dr. Tim Lautzenheiser.
The event will be held inside at:
Prairie High School
11311 NE 119th St.
The Eastside Catholic H.S. and Mead H.S. Marching Bands will present standstill performances of their shows and participate in an immersive clinic and leadership experience.
Parents and fans are welcome to attend the performances and observe the clinics. Spectators will be admitted free of charge - first-come, first-served - on a “space available” basis. Bands of America’s Official Merchandise Company, PepWear, will be onsite with commemorative souvenirs.
11:30 AM - Doors Open
12:00 PM - Eastside Catholic H.S. Marching Band, WA
12:30-1:30 PM - Clinic
2:45 PM - Mead H.S. Marching Band, WA
3:15-4:15 PM - Clinic
4:30-5:30 PM - The Bands of America Leadership Experience with John Pollard and Dr. Tim Lautzenheiser
Other bands scheduled to perform were unable to attend due to disallowed school travel, due to the extreme weather.
There will be no live stream of this indoor event.
Music for All thanks Barbara Kujava and Prairie High School for their cooperation and help to move the event. Thanks also to the bands, teachers, staff, parents, and boosters of the bands enrolled in the Bands of America Regional at Hillsboro for their support.
Music pumps us up, and winds us down.
It’s the rhythm we set as we plod through a hard run,
And the tinkling laughter of our loved ones.
Whether your students aspire to a musical career, or they simply love music and the camaraderie it brings, Ball State University has what they need.
Music for All is proud to have Ball State University as a Corporate Sponsor, and host of our Music for All Summer Symposium, presented by Yamaha, each June.
Consider the 65-member Ball State Symphony Orchestra, which routinely sends members to play with the local, professional Muncie Symphony Orchestra. Or if your students prefer a raucous route, the “Pride of Mid-America” Marching Band and Ball State Basketball Band are among beloved options that will get their blood pumping.
Students can audition for a spot with the Ball State University Singers, Indiana’s Official Goodwill Ambassadors, so named by the Indiana General Assembly. Or join the Statesmen or Women’s Chorus, open to any singer, no audition required.
In all, there are more than a dozen performance groups for Ball State students.
For students who see a career in music as their life’s chosen path, the School of Music offers five majors and eight minors for undergraduates, plus two master’s degrees, a doctor of arts, and an artist diploma. Bachelor’s degree programs require auditions, in addition to applying to the university. Students have until January 6, 2017, to reserve an audition and can find guidelines at bsu.edu/music/auditions.
At Ball State, students can get involved, feed their spirit, fuel their imagination, and set that journey to music.
Learn more by visiting bsu.edu/music or call 765-285-5400.
Music education is a win-win-win: for students, teachers, and system. If you believe that all students deserve to have access and opportunity to active music-making in his or her scholastic environment, then watch this short animated video to hear more about the many benefits of music education.
Music for All thanks to Dr. Jeremy L. Earnhart, Director of Fine Arts, Arlington I.S.D. Arlington, Texas for permission to use portions of his research and presentations.
BroaderMinded.com and National Association for Music Education, www.nafme.org.
Benham, J. L. (2011). Music Advocacy. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Education.
Jensen, E. (2001). Arts With the Brain in Mind. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Jensen, E. (2009). Teaching With Poverty in Mind. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Kraus N., Slater J., Thompson E., Hornickel J., Strait D., Nicol T., & White-Schwoch T. (2014). Music enrichment programs improve the neural encoding of speech in at risk children. Journal of Neuroscience. 34(36): 11913-11918.
Pink, D. H. (2006). A Whole New Mind. New York: Riverhead Books
Pink, D. H. (2010). Drive. New York: Riverhead Books
Pink, D. H. (2012). To Sell is Human. New York: Riverhead Books.
Robinson, K. (2009). The Element. New York: Penguin Group.
Texas Music Educators Association. (2013). Students enrolled in fine arts courses score higher on the SAT than those with no fine arts coursework [Data file]. Accessed October 9, 2014, from Texas Music Educators Association Web site: http://www.tmea.org/assets/pdf/National_SAT_Score_Comparison.pdf
Texas Music Educators Association. (July 25, 2014). Fine arts participation data [PowerPoint presentation]. Available July 25, 2014, tmea.org Web site: http://www.tmea.org/ resources/advocacy/materials
White-Schwoch, T., Carr, K., Anderson, S., Strait, D. L., & Kraus, N. (2013). Older Adults Benefit from Music Training Early in Life: Biological Evidence for Long-Term Training-Driven Plasticity. Journal of Neuroscience, 33(45), 17667-17674.
Lyons, L. (2003). Americans want music students to play on [Online article]. Retrieved from the Gallup Organization website: http://www.gallup.com/poll/8434/Americans-Want-Music-Students-Play.aspx
Harris Poll. (2007, November 12). Those with more education and higher household incomes are more likely to have had music education [Press release]. Retrieved from harrisinteractive.com website: http://www.harrisinteractive.com/vault/Harris-Interactive-Poll-Research-Music-Education-2007-11.pdf
Harris Poll. (2014, July 24). The Glee Effect? More Americans Say Music Education Prepares People for Their Careers and Problem Solving Than in 2007 [Press release]. Retrieved from harrisinteractive.com Web site: http://www.harrisinteractive.com/vault/Harris%20Poll%2072%20-%20Music%20education_7.24.2014.pdf
Music for All is proud to announce its partnership with FloSports and the launch of FloMarching, a new site dedicated to covering the world of competitive marching bands and the marching arts.
Beginning this fall, FloMarching will live stream all 21 Bands of America marching band championships, including all Regionals, Super Regionals, and Grand Nationals, America’s the largest and most prestigious national high school marching band event. In addition to live streaming and event coverage, FloMarching will produce an educational series designed to enhance and compliment Music for All's educational programming.
The live streams will be available to FloPRO monthly or yearly subscribers.
"We are delighted to partner with FloSports, a leader in live sports production and storytelling, to further our vision of affording every child across America the access and opportunity to engage in active music-making in an educational environment,” Music for All President and CEO Eric Martin said. “This endeavor combines Music for All's decades-long leading-position in school music education and performance opportunities with FloSports' pioneering approach in media. Our partnership will allow us to tell our participants’ stories and expand our vision to a vastly larger and broader audience.”
“We’re proud to launch FloMarching and announce our partnership with an outstanding organization in Music for All,” FloSports co-founder and CEO Martin Floreani said. “There's a massive, passionate community that already exists here. We’re excited to help grow their sport and feed their passion with a level of coverage that’s simply unprecedented in marching arts.”
In addition to its event coverage, FloMarching will produce original documentaries on the marching arts elite ensembles, designers, educators and performers, as well as technique videos from expert instrumentalists and marching instructors.
Music education surely is a demanding career. Do we need any obstacles to make it harder? How about if I told you that there is significant data and articles supporting the argument that marching band causes hearing loss? Does that seem too strong of a claim? The fact is, those claims are being made and that really is something we all ought to be seriously concerned about!
As musicians, there may not be anything more important than our hearing. At Vic Firth we have long believed that hearing protection is of crucial importance to musicians of all ages and disciplines. We have a responsibility to the musicians we serve – whether they are behind a drum set, on a football field, or in a concert hall.
Expanding upon our highly successful line of isolation headphones, we have now designed new High-Fidelity Earplugs in collaboration with Etymotic Research; some of the brightest minds in the field of professional hearing protection. With the portability of this product, it is very easy to use for all participants in marching band, drum corps and indoor marching percussion to practice and perform, safely. With such a product, we are able to better promote the importance of hearing protection among young musicians and music educators.
Learn more at vicfirth.com.
"The VAE Rehearsal System is outstanding – my students can actually experience playing in a performance environment: maintaining rhythm, tuning and pitch across the band," explains Joel Ashbrook, Band Director at Central High School in San Angelo, Texas.
Ashbrook chooses different acoustic settings to work on improving balance and precision with his students. He believes the VAE technology is a great teaching tool.
Before Central's band room was renovated, Ashbrook found it challenging to instruct students effectively about attacks, releases and articulation. Like most school rehearsal rooms, Central's was acoustically dry, lacking any resonance or ambiance. The VAE Technology now provides alternatives.
"If I know our marching band is playing at a large football stadium, I'll select the sports arena setting," Ashbrook states. "It improves precision, balance and blend issues, such as from the percussion battery to the upper brass."
The custom setting enables Ashbrook's groups to play every day in a hall that sounds like the stage they'll compete on. "That can't help but give us an advantage," he notes.
Ashbrook considers the VAE technology's record-playback function extremely beneficial to learning. "It's been an eye-opener for my students. I might explain something a thousand times, but hearing it makes the light bulb go on.
"The VAE Rehearsal System really helps my day-to-day teaching," explains Ashbrook. "Initially I thought the system was just a way to show students how they would sound onstage. But as soon as I was given a demo, I realized how I could use it as a teaching tool."
Visit Wenger at wengercorp.com.
Yamaha is proud to offer a number of used drumlines along with individual marching snares and multi-toms. Whether you are a high school looking to replace an older drumline or a student looking for a custom marching in a custom color, Yamaha has a number of options that fit a variety of needs.
Click here to see a complete list of both used drumlines for your program as well individual marching drums.
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