I recently found out that my high school band director, Alan Fetterman, has passed away. I’m really sad as I had dreamed of having a long conversation with him at some point about music and his profound influence on me. He was the first major impact in my life in music. He put together an amazing program at Miami Palmetto High School where he had several concert bands, a marching band, and an award-winning jazz big band.
He wrote out our charts by hand and gave me my first insight into music engraving and arranging. His charts were a lot of fun to play and pushed us to excellence. He did many of the marching band arrangements and all the plotting for the half-time shows.
He pushed me harder than any teacher and inspired me to become a musician with an understanding of what focused excellence can bring to music. Thank you, Mr. Fetterman. I hope you are running a big band for the man upstairs two days a week and playing drums and percussion with the best of the best on the other nights.
Christopher Alpiar, Atlanta, GA