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University Spotlight: Michigan State University Drumline


Instructed by Jon Weber



Ralph Hardimon (SRH)

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With a unique barrel tip and long taper for quick rebound and added control. In wood or nylon tip.

L = 17"“, Dia. = .710“


Thom Hannum (STH)

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A round tip with a very long taper and thick neck for great control and response, especially at low dynamic levels.

L = 165/8"“, Dia. = .690“



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Tapered hickory shafts offer excellent balance and control.

L = 0"“, Dia. = .“

msu4The 300-member Spartan Marching Band is one of the oldest and most recognized university performing ensembles in the country. The SMB was founded in 1870 as a 10-member student group (all of the original members were civil war veterans), and since then has grown into one of the premiere college bands in the nation. The band has appeared in concert and on football fields in cities such as San Francisco, New York, Dallas, Chicago, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Albuquerque, St. Louis, Denver, New Orleans, Salt Lake City, Tokyo, Tucson, San Diego, Orlando, and Washington, D.C.

The MSU Drumline has been playing The Series, a four-minute series of cadences written by Joel Leach and Merritt Lutz in the 1950’s and early 1960’s, in its present form since the 1964 season. The 2008 MSU Drumline consisted of 10 snares, 5 tenors, 7 basses, and 10 cymbals; like the other Big Ten schools, the Spartan Marching Band has no front ensemble. The MSU Compline (a cooperative effort between the MSU College of Music percussion studio and the MSU Drumline) performs at competitions, clinics, and exhibitions around the United States. The MSU Drumline has performed clinics and participated in outreach throughout Michigan as well as host their own Day of Percussion in East Lansing.

Find out more about the Michigan State University Spartan Marching Band here:

The MSU Drumline website

The Spartan Marching Band website

The MSU College of Music website



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 is composer / artistic director for the Detroit Pistons Drumline, which has performed at NBA games in Detroit and Chicago, with Kid Rock on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, and the 2006 NBA All-Star Game in Houston, Texas.

Dr. Weber is percussionist for the world fusion group Thom Jayne and the Nomads which released their second CD, Road Trip, in 2007. During the summer, Dr. Weber teaches percussion for the Michigan All-State Band at the Interlochen Arts Academy.

Dr. Weber has performed with the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra, the Lansing Symphony Orchestra, the Brass Band of Battle Creek, the New York Solsti Orchestra, and the Santa Clara Vanguard. He has also taught percussion at Oklahoma State University. His percussion arrangements have been performed by university drumlines across the United States. He recently performed Michael Daugherty’s timpani concerto Raise the Roof with the MSU Wind Symphony under the direction of Dr. Kevin Sedatole.

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