The Madison County marching band intends to jazz up fall Friday nights with its musical selections this year.
Under the guidance of a new band director, this year’s halftime show set list includes “Summertime,” My Funny Valentine,” “Solstice” and “El Gato,” a Latin-jazz selection.
“The kids love Latin jazz,” said new band director Nick Golding.
And they hope football crowds will love it this fall.
The Raider band spent the summer practicing in sweltering conditions, readying the show for its Aug. 29 debut. Golding called band camp “brutal.”
“The heat was extreme,” he said.
Still, Golding said his new pupils in Madison County were enthusiastic and open to his style of teaching.
“The kids have been fantastic,” Golding said. “They easily adapted to new ideas.”
Golding brings an impressive musical résumé to Madison County’s music program.
Originally from North Carolina, Golding spent seven years playing in U.S. Navy band and later worked on the staff of the University of Tennessee matching band.
He’s currently a member of the Atlanta Pops and is pursuing a Master’s degree in music education.
Golding also brings national instructing experience to the table, working with the Drum and Bugle Corps.
“It’s basically the NFL of marching band,” explained Golding, who recently returned from a show in Indianapolis.
Golding comes in with Madison County having switched band rooms. The band’s new room is located at the Freshmen Academy and offers more space. The board of education also helped to buy more instruments.
Golding thinks the band members generally enjoy the new digs, even though the walk is a little longer.
“I don’t think they like the hike over there,” Golding said with a laugh. “But I do think they like it better. There’s more space.”
While the first halftime show is Aug. 29 — the night Madison County travels to take on Rockdale County — the band will perform at preview show on the eve of the first football game at a location to be determined later.
Golding has also extended an open invitation for former band members to come back and play with the band during home games this fall.
All are welcome.
“As many alumni as we can get into the stands,” Golding said.
NOTES: Golding noted that the flag corps is now 16 members strong and sees potential in this group. Though young, he said that in three years, “they’ll be fantastic.”