The Grand Junction High School Band Program has been a staple of the community and state of Colorado for over 100 years. Since the bands beginnings in the early twentieth century, it has been representative of musical quality and personal excellence. The band continues to provide students with outstanding experiences that prepare them for the real world in a challenging and positive environment.
Many things have changed since the band began those many years ago. Today, the band program consists of the Tiger Pride Marching Band, three concerts bands, three jazz ensembles, Winterguard, jazz combo, and other various chamber ensembles. There are over 200 students involved in these various high quality performance ensembles. Here are just some of the accomplishments of these various groups:
GJHS Band, circa 1924
Taken from the attached article...
"On the night of June thirteenth last year thirteen boys of the High School met at the Stong Music company's recital room and the first rehearsal of the Grand Juntion high School Band took place. Hard work through the hot summer with the adding of boys to the membership as they were able to play the music, made it possible to play at the opening assembly of High School.
Down through discord and too close harmony came the band, now of twenty-five pieces, and the football season ended with the band just getting a good start in music. Pounding away, basketball season past, and just when things looked brightest there was an upheaval of opposition coming from parents whose boys had taken too much liberty with the band's practice nights. Then came nights or real rehearsals, extra practices and a trip to Montrose that caused comment on every side when the band burst into flame on the Main avenue of Montrose, in full uniform.
A vaudeville appearance of the band in late May, the band just just eleven months old and thirty-two strong, made a hit with the Grand Junction audience and as school closes its year many places to play for are being arranged. Outside cities are asking for the services of the band, and real music is forthcoming from the enthusiastic members of the largest all-year organization of Grand Junction's High School."
Tiger Pride Marching Band
- CBA State Marching Semi-finalist in 2016
- Selected to perform at the 2013 Orlando Magic Music Days
- Selected to perform at the 2010 Alamo Bowl in San Antonio
- 2007 MOST IMPROVED 5A MARCHING BAND IN COLORADO
- Consistent CBA state marching band qualifier (quarter finalist and semi-finalist band-most improved band class 4A 2004)
- Selected to perform as part of Disney Magic Music Days
- Consistent outstanding inspection awards
- Outstanding band in multiple parade performances
- Selected to perform at multiple World Fairs
- Participant in Portland Rose Festival Parade
- 2017 Outstanding High School Jazz Ensemble and Overall High School Jazz Ensemble at the Ft. Lewis Jazz Festival
- 2016 Outstanding 5A Jazz Ensemble at the Colorado West Music Festival
- 2013 Outstanding 5A Jazz Ensemble at the Colorado West Music Festival
- 2009 Outstanding 5A Jazz Ensemble at the Colorado West Music Festival
- Recording artist with Aspen Leaf Recording
- Consistent superior performances at various local and national festivals including Greeley Jazz Festival and Canon City Cherry Blossom Festival
- Consistent "Outstanding Jazz Ensemble" at the Colorado West Invitational Music Festival
- Outstanding Jazz Ensemble at Festivals of Music Competition, Anaheim, CA
- Featured on KAFM "Live from the Radio Room"
- Opening group in the 2006 and 2007 Wells Fargo Festival, Grand Junction
- 2009 Outstanding 4A Symphonic Band
- Wind Ensemble selected to participate in the CBA State Concert Band Festival six of the last eight years
- Numerous "Outstanding Concert Band" awards at the Colorado West Invitational Music Festival
- Awarded the William Revelli Concert Band award at the Festivals of Music Competition, Anaheim, CA
- Consistent Superior and Excellent performances at local, state and national performances
In the history of the Grand Junction High School Band there have been a number of talented individuals who have served as Director of Bands.
Mr. Isaac Lavadie
Mr. Seth Wollam
Mrs. Genice Matzke
Mr. Tim Mullen
Ms. Kathy Joseph
2007 CBA Hall of Fame Inductee, District #51 Music Coordinator
Mr. Tom Irwin
Dr. Tim Mills
Former Superintendant of District 51
Mr. Ray Millholland
Mr. Steve Newton
Mr. Charlie Sheen-Interim director (deceased)
Mr. Marion Jacobs (deceased)
Former District #51 Music Coordinator
Mr. William "Billy" Gould (deceased)
Former Director of the USC Trojan Band
Frank Hall (deceased)
Mr. Audrie Stong (deceased)
*Leave of absence for military service 1942-1945
If you have any information regarding directors prior to 1941, please email current director of bands Isaac Lavadie at: Isaac.Lavadie@d51schools.org