Back to Archives

Tuba with a twist

MarchFourth Marching Band isn't your father's marching band

Email Article Print Article Share on Facebook Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon

Bobble Tiki would like to take this opportunity to apologize, formally.

In high school, back when Bobble Tiki was trying to be Sonny Crocket and scribbling “Scorps Rulz” on his PeeChee, Bobble Tiki used to make fun of kids in the marching band. Dweebs. Nerds. Dorks. Nincompoops. Even mollycoddles.

Bobble Tiki had a thousand names to call those in the band.

Perhaps it was his own adolescent insecurity, or maybe it was even jealousy because kids in the band had musical talent and he didn’t, but Bobble Tiki would stop at nothing to make a joke at a “band geek’s” expense.

Time passed, and Bobble Tiki put high school behind him. He realized Sonny Crocket was kind of a joke, and he realized he didn’t know as much as he thought he did when he was 17. Still, never once did he feel sorry about what a jackass he’d been to kids in the band. He grew up and put it all behind him, without regret.

Then, Bobble Tiki took a trip south, to Portland, and had a chance encounter with the MarchFourth Marching Band — who just happens to play the Capital Theatre in Olympia on Friday, May 25.

Suddenly, guilt flooded Bobble Tiki.

The MarchFourth Marching Band, in all its size and raucousness, floored Bobble Tiki. Never had he seen a man with a bass trombone exude so much energy. Never had he heard a djembe inspire him. This all changed when Bobble Tiki met the MarchFourth Marching Band.
As big as any band with guitars and Marshall stacks, MarchFourth Marching Band actually rocks, which up until Bobble Tiki laid eyes on them, he didn’t think was possible for a marching band to do. If he had known about stuff like this, swirling, worldly, surreal, and sweaty, Bobble Tiki wouldn’t have given the guys in the band such a hard time back in high school. But then again, he never heard his high school band attempt anything like the abstract but engulfing, parade styled antics he saw from MarchFourth. He never saw his high school band employ stylized dancers and stilt-walkers. Bobble Tiki’s high school marching band was nothing like MarchFourth.

Perhaps they should have been. Perhaps Bobble Tiki would have been more interested.
While Bobble Tiki can’t go back in time and make up for his lack of insight in high school, he can whole-heartedly endorse the MarchFourth Marching Band. Maybe you’re like Bobble Tiki was in high school. Maybe you think marching bands are for dummies. Maybe the thought of tubas makes you cringe.

MarchFourth will change you. Forever.

Consistently ranked as one of Portland’s top bands — which says a lot considering the Shins, the Thermals, Menomena, the Blow, and every other indie band in the world is currently holed up in the river town 130 miles south of Tacoma — MarchFourth was created by a few friends, and a few beers, way back in 2002. When it all started, MarchFourth was five friends with a vision. These days, the group is made up of about 35 warm bodies — or about 25 musicians, and 10 dancers.

“Consisting of a 14-piece horn section (four saxophones, four trombones, five trumpets, and a tuba), a 10-piece drum/percussion corps, anchored by electric bass (battery powered). The sound is huge, melodic, and dynamic, taking audiences on a musical journey around the globe. MarchFourth writes and performs its own material, and also draws inspiration from worldwide sources. The music is a sprinkle of Mardi Gras, a dash of afro beat, a taste of jazz, a sip of samba, and a splash of European brass,” explains the MarchFourth Web site.

“Stilt-walkers, unicycles, fire eaters, puppets, flag twirlers, burlesque dancers, clown antics, and acrobatics are just some of the things you’ll see accompanying this eclectic band. MarchFourth Marching Band’s four stilt-walkers are world-class, performing acrobatics, dance routines, and even fire dancing on stilts-all in fanciful costumes. The other six beauties can fill the stage with mesmerizing dance routines, or spread out into the audience and get them dancing too. The musical quality, the energy of the band, and the spectacle of the dancers all combine to create an original performance that appeals to all kinds of people.”

The Web site is correct. MarchFourth Marching Band appeals to all kinds of people —  even those who were assholes in high school. Bobble Tiki would like to take this opportunity to apologize for his deplorable actions against “band geeks” way back when, and as of today, would like to fully endorse marching bands — especially the MarchFourth Marching Band.
Bobble Tiki was wrong. Marching bands are far cooler than Sonny Crocket.

As hopefully you’ve come to expect, so as not to crush your hopes on a weekly basis, Bobble Tiki isn’t the least bit concerned with what you do this week, because he doesn’t even know you.  Bobble Tiki has far greater concerns than your measly existence, like the national trade deficit and Lindsay Lohan’s cocaine problem. Unless you can help Bobble Tiki convince a simple majority of U.S. Senators that the Dog Whisperer deserves his own holiday, than Bobble Tiki doesn’t want to meet you. Besides, Bobble Tiki would probably disappoint you in person. He looks bigger in the Volcano.

[Capitol Theater, with Vagabond Opera and Femme De Fabrique, Friday, May 25, 8:30 p.m., $10-$15, 206 Fifth Ave. S.E., Olympia,]
Bobble Tiki is going out of his head via e-mail and www.myspace. com/bobbletiki

comments powered by Disqus