Music For All: Hall of Fame
The first Hall of Fame induction was bittersweet for the Bands of America family, with the recent passing of Col. Crawford, who died March 4, 2003.

Col. Truman W. Crawford was commander of the Marine Corps Drum and Bugle Corps from 1973 until retiring in 1998. Col. Crawford's influence extended well beyond the Marines. At points in the 1960s and 1970s, virtually every championship drum and bugle corps in the country was playing one of the hundreds of arrangements he made.

Shortly after high school graduation in 1953, he auditioned for the U.S. Air Force Drum and Bugle Corps and was accepted as a baritone bugler. In short order, he became the corps' musical director and senior noncommissioned officer. But the unit was disbanded in 1963, and he moved to Chicago to run a music store. He continued to arrange and consult with civilian drum and bugle corps. Based on his reputation, he was asked to join the Marines in 1967 as a chief music arranger.

During his tenure there, he jazzed up the playlist with show tunes and other popular music, and instituted a "slide-and-glide" style of marching that was a cool display of military efficiency. He also was influential in persuading manufacturers to produce bugles with two valves instead of one, allowing a greater range of notes. Both of these innovations helped shaped drum corps and marching band as we know it today.

Col. Crawford performed before nine presidents, many of whom he knew on a first-name basis. When he retired, he was the oldest Marine on active duty.

"For a drum and bugle corps, he was our John Philip Sousa," says Michael H. Gardner, who had been the corps' drum major under Col. Crawford.

Click here to view the induction video presentation of Col. Truman W. Crawford.

Click here to read Larry McCormick's tribute to his dear friend, Col. Truman W. Crawford.