Home National news Cane Ridge HS band at New Orleans Mardi Gras

Cane Ridge HS band at New Orleans Mardi Gras

by Cass Teague

Johnny Croft, Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band Director,

Johnny Croft, Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band Director,

The Renowned Sound of the Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band from Cane Ridge High School in Antioch, Tennessee was featured last weekend in New Orleans, Louisiana during the weekend celebration of Mardi Gras. The band marched in parades for the Krewe of Tucks and the Krewe of Thoth, respectively on Saturday and Sunday, March 25 and 26.

Following an early morning departure from Nashville on Friday, March 24, the band was hosted by the Human Jukebox, the fantastic marching band from Jaguar Land at Southern University in Baton Rouge. After dinner at the Mall of Louisiana, the band members checked into their hotel to rest up and prepare for the busy weekend of parades.

There were a total of 83 students, band staff and parent chaperones participating in the memorable trip. They traveled on two luxury charter buses. This was Cane Ridge’s 2nd consecutive year participating in Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band lines up for Parade #2 for the KreweofThoth

Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band lines up for Parade #2 for the KreweofThoth

Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band Director Johnny Croft has been very active since being named director in 2015. He utilizes networks and contacts to enhance the band and give the members various educational and musical experiences through the region. As an alumnus of Tennessee State University, where he was a proud member of the phenomenal Aristocrat of Bands, he has employed both his band and fraternal contacts to arrange the trips to Mardi Gras.

“I know the head band director at Southern” says Croft, noting that he “and I are fraternity brothers (ΚΑΨ).” Other experiences he said will be memorable for the kids.

“They got a chance to come to the city of New Orleans and taste some authentic gumbo, red beans and rice and beignets,” said Croft. He also noted that they also got to “march in two Mardi Gras Parades and see other high school bands that they never saw before.”

Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band marches in new orleans on February 25

Rhythmic Ravens Marching Band marches in New Orleans on February 25

Also on the trip were other Rhythmic Ravens staff members, including assistant band director Mark Hawkins; percussion instructors Jeremy Daves and Darryl Lawless; and dance line coordinator Agia Hicks and her assistant Tiera Thompson.

When asked how the organizers (Krewes) responded to the band and their showmanship, Croft noted, “They loved us and would like for us to participate again next year.”

Croft and his staff are continually working out new and exciting events for their students. Plan now to attend and support this group at one or more of their upcoming performances. Coming up for the band you should know about are these future events. The Concert Band will be performing at MTSU on Friday, March 10, 2017 for Middle Tennessee Band Strings & Orchestra Concert Performance Assessment. Cane Ridge will host a Band Jamboree on Saturday, April 1st. This event will have Marching Bands from Kentucky, Georgia & Michigan participating. The Concert Band Spring Trip will be Six Flags over Georgia on Saturday, April 8, 2017. The Marching Band will be traveling to Washington D.C. For the National Memorial Day Parade May 26th-29th.

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