MSU Drumline Bios
Michigan State University Spartan Marching Band
The 300-member Spartan Band is one of the oldest and most recognized university marching bands in the country. The band was founded in 1870 as a 10-member student group, and since then has grown into one of the premiere college bands in the nation. The SMB has played for five U.S. Presidents and performed at five Rose Bowls, two world's fairs, and one World Series. The Spartan Band has toured the United States extensively, winning the hearts of band fans everywhere. The band has appeared in concert and on football fields in San Francisco, New York, Dallas, Chicago, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Albuquerque, St. Louis, Denver, New Orleans, Salt Lake City, Tokyo, Tucson, San Diego and Washington, D.C. For more information about the Spartan Marching Band, please visit http://www.spartanband.net
"The Series" is the name of the percussion cadence used by the Spartan Band in parade marches. It is actually a series of seven different cadences strung together in march tempo. The Series was composed and arranged by Joel Leach and Merritt Lutz from 1959 -1966. By 1966, The Series was 4 minutes long – and the tradition has remained, as it is still played today. Thousands of fans line the Kalamazoo Street Bridge to cheer on the band as the "March Over" to Spartan Stadium each home game.
The Series – 2018
Merritt Lutz discussion of the Series
Michigan State University Drumline
The MSU Drumline has a rich history of excellence. The drumline placed first for three years in a row at the Bands of America Drumline Competition in the early 1990s. The drumline also won the Glenbrook North Competition Collegiate Division in the 1980s and 2000s. The MSU Drumline has placed second in the Percussive Arts Society International Drumline Competition several times. In 2010 and 2018, the Spartan Marching Band was invited to perform at the Bands of America National Championship, and performed in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN. In 2011, the MSU Drumline was invited to perform at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention at the Collegiate Drumline Exhibition. The drumline performed in Times Square in 2012 and at Carnegie Hall in New York in the summer of 2017. The drumline performs for all home football games and has performed at MSU and Detroit Pistons basketball games. Members of the MSU Drumline have performed in the top drum corps in the world including Cavaliers, Blue Devils, Santa Clara Vanguard, Carolina Crown, Bluecoats, Cadets, Phantom Regiment, Blue Knights, Madison Scouts, Blue Stars, Crossmen, and more. The MSU Drumline hosts a Day of Percussion each fall in addition to the busy performing schedule. The Spartan Marching Band Drumline endorses Yamaha, Vic Firth, Remo, and Zildjian percussion products. The MSU Drumline has been directed by Dr. Jon Weber since 1996.
Jon Weber is Instructor of Percussion at the Michigan State University College of Music, where he teaches applied percussion lessons, percussion ensemble, salsa band, and the award-winning Michigan State Drumline. He has performed and presented clinics throughout the United States and in South America, the Caribbean, and Asia. He has served on the Percussive Arts Society Marching Percussion Committee and currently serves as vice-president of the Michigan PAS Chapter. Weber heads the percussion faculty for the summer Performing Arts Camp at Michigan State University, is an active clinician with the Yamaha Sounds of Summer Program, and taught the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps Summer Education Camp from 2015 - 2017. With the MSU Drumline, he has presented performances at the Bands of America Grand National Championships, the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, and wherever the Spartans play football, including the Rose Bowl in 2014. Weber has published his pieces X and Machine (winner of the 2013 PAS Percussion Composition Contest) with Tapspace Percussion. From 2004 – 2011, Weber was composer / arranger for the Detroit Pistons Drumline. University, NBA, and NFL Drumlines have performed his percussion arrangements throughout the United States. He arranged the front ensemble music for NorthCoast Academy of WGI from 2013 – 2016 and has served as a consultant for other WGI and DCI ensembles. Weber received his DMA in Percussion Performance from Michigan State in 2008. Weber is a Yamaha Performing Artist, Tapspace Artist, and proudly endorses Zildjian, Vic Firth, and Remo products. Jon Weber lives in Lansing, Michigan with his wife Molly and son Walden.