Community Band Spotlight: June 2009 June 22 2009, 1 Comment

JUNE 2009

Welcome to the Altissimo! Community Band Spotlight for June. Each month we look at community bands across the nation, and this month we’re pleased to present a band from right here at home in Tennessee, the Tennessee Valley Winds from Murfreesboro, TN. Our very own Assistant Director of Licensing, Stacy, plays the oboe in the band, and it was at her suggestion that we decided to check out the Valley Winds.

photo courtesy of Schenk Photography

The Tennessee Valley Winds is a non-profit, all volunteer community band founded in 1984 by Joseph T. Smith and also led by Smith until 2000. The band averages 60-65 performers in concert, but the roster numbers close to 100 members. Of the 61 members performing in a recent concert, 10 members represent the various military branches, 3 of whom played in the bands, and 1 who still does play.

The age range has started as young as 16, but currently ranges from 19 to 79 years of age. These musicians are from high schools, colleges, all types of professions and the retired, people who love to play and may not have any outlet to participate in live music. Playing with the TVW is a great way to connect with musicians from all walks of life and from the earliest of talent to the most seasoned performer. Several smaller bands have been started out of the TVW roster, including a clarinet ensemble and a brass quintet, and these bands perform their own concerts and also concerts for the community in local ceremonies as well as locales like nursing homes.

The band has been fortunate to play a performance in London, England, and also to receive invitations to participate in several events and conferences, including the 2009 American School Band Director’s Association convention. The music the TVW plays is as diverse as any other band, but something interesting they do for Wind Band conferences is to bring in a guest conductor and perform his compositions or music of the conductor’s choosing. The overall goal of the Tennessee Valley Winds is simply to entertain and engage the audience through music; by choosing music from Broadway to Sousa as well as pieces that challenge them, they easily achieve this goal.

Being a good steward of the community is something else the TVW look to do. It is only with the help of the community that the TVW can exist, with local schools and churches opening their doors as rehearsal sites and concert venues. Several band directors and teachers perform with the band, and they learn and take ideas back to use in their own school bands. Middle Tennessee State University hosts a Wind Band Conference where the TVW perform and show that band is still cool and not just for those young enough to be enrolled in secondary school.

Keeping the band cool is director Terry Jolley. Exposed to music at a young age by his musically inclined parents, Jolley naturally fell into the path of music. He performed in school bands throughout his youth before going on to MTSU for music education. He has been the recipient of multiple awards, including four citations of excellence by the National Band Association, four-time induction into Who’s Who Among American Teachers, and also served as Director of the Governor’s School for the Arts. In addition to these honors, he also serves on the board for the Music City Youth in Performing Arts.

Because of their commitment to excellence in music and their efforts to keep music alive and spread it throughout their community, we are proud to present the Tennessee Valley Winds as our Community Band Spotlight for June. If you would like more information about the Tennessee Valley Winds, please visit their website

*Special thanks to Vicky Williams, TVW Publicity Director, for being a great correspondent and to the Tennessee Valley Winds for being a part of our Spotlight!

**If you know of any community bands we could feature in our Spotlight, please email Krista at with the subject line “CBS Suggestion”