Performed my first gig today

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Maui_Jimmy, Jul 15, 2014.

  1. Maui_Jimmy

    Maui_Jimmy Piano User

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    The bad news is it was a funeral playing Taps. It was my first time to play Taps. I'm not the typical "A" personality trumpet player, so it was a little intimidating. The Navy Color Guard that showed up had a bugle with an electronic device in the bell that played Taps. They let me check it out and it was pretty cool. They just hold it so no ones sees the device and fake the playing. After the service they caught up with me and complimented my playing. I thought that was really nice of them considering they didn't have to say anything. It made me feel pretty good. I wonder if I would have gotten the same compliment if I would have shared with them I am a Marine. I had debated wearing my Class C, but I wasn't sure if they were authorized for funerals, so I just wore a suit. Anyway... I was pretty excited about it and wanted to share.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2014
  2. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

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    Well done,

    And I really think a suit is the correct, respectful thing to wear. The Bugler is there to honour the departed, and add that element of respect - not to be the centre of attention. You did well.
     
  3. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Ya did good! Personally, it's my opinion that it would have been perfectly acceptable, and maybe even preferable, to have worn the uniform. It's not about getting a compliment - it's about honoring someone's service to their nation, and what better way is there to do that than to do it as a fellow veteran. I don't think it would have detracted or made you any more the center of attention than the Taps already was. But, that's just my take on it.
     
  4. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

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    I do agree, but I also read some rivalry between Navy and Marines.... or maybe not.
    I think if you know the honour Guard is Marine or Army, then a Marine performing Taps is suitable. It probably points to knowing more about the deceased service before arriving. However, I do agree, if you have the correct service dress, then it is appropriate.
     
  5. salebow

    salebow New Friend

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    Generally speaking, when I was doing these types of things back in high school, the branch that the Vet served in would do the funeral. When I pass on, I would like the Navy do mine as I put in 9 years of my life to my country. The same goes for my dad. He was in 3 years in the Vietnam war. Two of my uncles were Army, and I have a great uncle that was a Marine in WW2.
     
  6. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I've done over 400 funerals as an active duty Army trumpet player. In that experience I have seen a little bit of everything. (Seriously - dozens of stories to tell - everything from fist fights among the people in attendance to blood-curdling screams, to the kids at the inner-city school across the road getting rushed inside the moment the volleys went off.) There's no written rule about the bugler having to be from the same branch of the service - they do it when they can, but I've done funerals as a soldier for any and all.

    Regarding the Navy/Marine Corps thing, something to understand is that the Marine Corp falls under the Department of the Navy - they wear the different uniforms, but technically they are the same branch. And there may be a bit of a rivalry, but never to the point that Navy folks are going to have a beef with a Marine playing taps - military honors in this country, and in particularly "Taps," is held sacred. To be out there at all is giving great honor to the fallen comrade no matter what branch, because rivalries aside, we are all serving the United States of America.

    I think that the people in attendance would actually feel better about it if the bugler was in uniform rather than just a suit, because the uniform signifies that the bugler actually "gets it." When my time comes, if I'm still around in spirit, I'd love for the person playing "Taps" to be wearing a uniform, regardless if it's an Army uniform or not.
     
  7. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

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    Not that I would say anything, or know of anyone else that would, but the law and DOD regulation is still on the books that one cannot wear any part if the uniform beyond 90 days after discharge. There are exceptions, but participation in veterans funerals is not one of them. The "doo-hickey" insert in the current DOD Ceremonial bugle was recorded by Senior Master Sergeant English, U.S. Army (RET) former bugler at Arlington National Cemetery who is reputed to have said something to the effect that he'll now sound Taps at his own funeral. These new Ceremonial bugles are now in the hands of many Veterans organizations, Funeral Homes, and even in the Offices of the Director of Veteran's Affairs in many Counties across the nation. To my knowledge I'm the only one within a 25 mile radius of my home that can and will sound live TAPS. It's not that some others can't, it's just that they won't. Too, as I've seen at a few funerals, they hand the bereaved family a pre-folded flag other than the one as actually laid on the deceased's casket as a pall. Such I call the ultimate disgrace of OUR NATION. I'm an Air Force veteran and too I've learned to fold the pall flag into a balanced star triangle.
     
  8. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I had assumed from Maui Jim's statement, "...I am a Marine..." meant that he was active duty. By all means, if you are out, you're out - wear the suit. I wouldn't dare wear a uniform now - THAT would be inappropriate.

    I'd play Taps more often if I had the time, but with the way my work schedule and accrued leave is set up, it's just not possible with my family in its current state. These days I mainly do it on behalf of friends and relatives. The last time I took time off to play "Taps" was for the father-in-law of an old friend of my wife's. They had a problem finding his DD214, and although they did find it, they weren't sure if it was going to be in time to get a bugler, so I suited up and went to the cemetery. As it turned out, I didn't end up playing - John Blount (Navy Ret. Former lead player for the US Navy Commodores) rolled up and had been tasked to do it through the organization he's a part of, so I bowed out. At the time I hadn't been playing as much and I figured he'd do a much better job of it than I would. He'd have let me given my connection to the family, but since he'd actually been tasked with it, I felt it best to let it go the way it was supposed to.

    Either way though the family was extremely appreciative that I had it covered for them just in case. :-)
     
  9. Dean_0

    Dean_0 Piano User

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    Grats Jimmy on your first gig :D respect for making your first one an honor gig .

    To all service men active and discharged ,Thank you for your service .

    Dean_0
     
  10. Maui_Jimmy

    Maui_Jimmy Piano User

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    I guess it's a good thing I erred on the side of caution. I got out in 91' just before Desert Storm. I said I am a Marine instead of I was a Marine, because once a Marine always a Marine. I suppose I could have phrased it differently, just wasn't thinking. Currently I am a member of the Texas State Guard Maritime Regiment. Our duty uniform is the MarPat DDU. Due to my service in the USMC, I am authorized to wear my USMC Rank on my uniforms and for events my USMC dress uniforms, without the EGA. We follow the same protocol on wearing uniforms as the MC does and I was unsure of what was appropriate.

    Patrick, over 400 funerals! Wow! I'm sure that would make an interesting book with all the things you have seen.

    Thanks for all input on this thread. Learned some good info and more about each of you.
     

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