Posted on January 23rd, 2021
Those wishing to honor the memory of World Drum Corps Hall of Fame member Don Friesing, who passed away recently, may make a donation to the Hall of Fame’s scholarship fund in his name. Donations can be sent to World Drum Corps Hall of Fame, PO Box 357, Pine Brook, NJ 07058.
Don Friesing, inducted in 2001, was one of the pioneers of the modern drum corps movement. He played drums with the Joseph B. Garity American Legion Post 562 in Ridgewood, New York, from 1939 to 1942. By 1943 he was teaching others to drum, and over the following 50 years produced many of the most accomplished percussion players in the drum corps community.
He marched with the Phoebe Hearst Post drum and bugle corps before serving in the United States Navy in 1945 and 1946. He then spent the following eight years marching with New York Skyliners.
Over the following years, he arranged for and instructed many top-rated junior and senior corps in the Greater New York City region including Our Lady of Loretto and St Joseph’s Patron Cadets in Brooklyn, Connecticut Hurricanes, Ballantine Brewers of Newark, Rae Post, Babylon Islanders, Washington Carver, St. Rocco’s of Newark, St. Ignatius All Girls of Hicksville, Kingston Criterions.
During those years, he worked with several horn instructors who also became World Drum Corps Hall of Fame members, including Jim Donnelly, Bill Hayes, Hy Dreitzer and Joe Genero.
He was one of the founding members of Drum Corps Associates (DCA), representing Connecticut Hurricanes at the organizational meeting at Archer Epler Post in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania in November 1963.
He was a percussion judge with several associations, including Northeastern Circuit, Long Island Circuit, Greater New York Circuit, Eastern States and DCA.
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