Wearing the Black and Blue Uniform: Jared Benton


Lydia Autry

Senior Jared Benton plays the trumpet at a Jazz Band concert on September 26, 2018.

Melissa Drella, 21st Century Journalism Writer

In the mess of astray instruments and music, the hangers in the band room seem to be the center of attention as they hold the marching band uniforms. To the seniors, it may not be uniforms that they’ll miss, but instead the memories they’ve had.

With the season’s recent end, Jared Benton, a senior trumpet player, recall’s the past seasons with fondness. From his freshman season Back to the Future show to his senior season Back in Black, he has dedicated his to time after-school practices, parades, and day-long competitions for the past four years. Whereas many students got interested in band during middle school, Benton has always wanted to take this class ever since he was younger.

“When I was growing up I really admired my brother and his friends,” Benton said. “They loved the band and I could see how fun all of the students would have with Mr. Taylor leading the show. I knew from a very young age that I’d be in band.”

While playing the trumpet may have not been his original choice, he eventually became accustomed to the trumpet’s bright and brass tone. Although he has had many hilarious incidents breaking various trumpets, his passion for playing one has never wavered.

“I’ve played trumpet for the last seven years of my life, I don’t think I could quit if I had to,” Benton said. “It’s crazy to think that I’ve played twice as long as the freshmen coming in, who have generally only played for three years. I don’t know if I’ll play after college, but I would like to always be able to pick up a trumpet and play well, should I feel the need.”

Staying in marching band for all four years of high school, the feeling of being in the band has always been enjoyable for him despite some hardships he’s faced.

“My opinion on marching band has never changed. I loved it before I joined, and I love it now,” Benton claimed, enthusiastically. “I’ll admit that I would have preferred different songs here and there, and I didn’t exactly enjoy some seasons, but I know that wasn’t because of the band itself. I’d recommend marching band to any student that feels comfortable with an instrument.”

Taking as many band classes as possible, Benton has always enjoyed band in general as a way to relax from a stressful day, but to him marching band is simply incomparable and has always been his favorite.

“I’ve taken marching band, wind ensemble, and jazz band,” Benton informed. “While I love all three classes, they don’t measure up to the energy and freedom that comes with marching band. In those other classes, you just have to sound good, and because they’re more advanced classes you can just choose not to play and let others carry you. You could effectively do nothing and do well in those classes. You can’t hide in marching band, though. If you don’t learn to march the audience will notice. It’s a huge responsibility, but it makes the class so much more intriguing.”

Whether it is forming new relationships or creating traditions for the upcoming freshmen, marching band has always remained a class that he continues to love.

“It’s a little hard, I’m not going to lie. Some of the best memories I’ve had are from this band,” Benton said. “I’m excited to go to college and be a part of a new group of people, but I’ll never forget the time I’ve had.”