“My life’s pretty boring when it comes to anything other than music,” senior Taylor Blagdon, head drum major, said. Blagdon has high hopes to guide the marching band to a superior this season at State.
Blagdon has been involved in band since he was in middle school. “In elementary school, I would always say, ‘I’m going to play the saxophone in sixth grade.’ And then I did and it’s really the one place where I felt like I belonged, like I fit in there,” he said.
As a sophomore in high school, he decided that one day he wanted to be a drum major. He remembers thinking, “I have the skills and the leadership to be able to do that.” Now that he’s reached his goal and this is his second year as a drum major, he enjoys it. “I like being the center of attention. I admit to it, but I also think I can express more [of] my musicality even more than I could just being on the field playing,” he said.
However, with this important role comes some stress. “You are the image of the North Platte band, everyone’s looking at you. If you mess up, it’s on you,” he said. “It’s a lot, but I love doing it.” Even though he’s not the only drum major this season, the pressure to be great is still there. “I have all this weight on my shoulders. I can’t mess up. If I mess up, they mess up, and everything just goes bad,” he said. “I have to know everything, and I just hate the fear of failure.”
Blagdon has many inspirations as well. “I don’t really just look up to one person, but Mr. [Brett] Bradley has really shaped me as a musician,” he said. Even so, Blagdon does have a firm side. “Ever since I joined choir with Mrs. [Leah] Purdy, I’ve become more strict and professional in my musical ways,” he said. Still, with his newfound seriousness, he also has a flexible nature. “Ms. [Dawn] Fickel has the most laid back side of music. That’s where I get relaxation from,” he said. It is music and it’s supposed to be fun, that’s how he sees it.
Overall, Blagdon hopes to work hard with the other musicians, as a unit. “Band is a family, that’s what we always say,” Blagdon said. However, that’s not his only end goal, “If they learn and they had fun while [competing], that’s okay. As long as they enjoyed their season,” Blagdon said.