Texas Tech University is unique in that it can boast that it fielded a band the very first day it opened its doors. The Tech Band performed at the very first Texas Tech football game in October of 1925 under the direction of W. Waghorne, Tech's first Music Department chairman.
1926 – 1981
In 1926 the college hired its first permanent director, Harry Lemaire. A former British army officer and veteran of the Spanish-American War where he served as Teddy Roosevelt's bandmaster in the San Juan Hill campaign. Lemaire was director until 1934 and a colleague of the famed bandmaster John Philip Sousa who visited Lubbock on several occasions. Lemaire chalked up many "firsts" for the Tech Band including being the first college band to travel to an away game and to have its half-time broadcast on radio. Even more fame was brought to the band when humorist Will Rogers helped finance the trip because he wanted Fort Worth to see a "real West Texas Band and hear some real West Texas Music." The original band, in the spirit of the campus architecture, sported Spanish style uniforms complete with gaucho hats and a sombrero for director Lemaire. It was in fact Lemaire who composed the alma mater, "The Matador Song."
D.O. (Prof) Wiley, director from 1934-1959, was responsible for establishing Texas' first Kappa Kappa Psi Chapter and the founding chapter of Tau Beta Sigma in the nation (The Beta Chapter). This is commerated by a plaque in front of the music building. Professor Wiley began work with a sixty-piece band that grew to over two hundred members under his direction. "Prof" is recognized as the "Father of Texas Bands."
In 1959, Dean Killion came to direct the band from Fresno State College in California, where he was Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music. From 1955-1957 he was on the staff at the University of Nebraska. The size of the band grew from 100 in 1959 to 450 in 1981. Mr. Dean Killion hired Mr. Keith Bearden in the fall of 1980 as Assistant Director of Bands. Because of his excellent leadership, Mr. Killion gained national notoriety and provided a memorable band experience for thousands of students during his career. His years of service to the Band and University were culminated when in 1981 the Board of Regents named him Director of Bands Emeritus.
1981 – 2003
In 1981, James Sudduth was hired as the Director of Bands at Texas Tech University. At this time the job was then split - Mr. Sudduth as Director of Bands and director of the Symphonic Band and Mr. Bearden re-named Associate Director of Bands and Director of the Goin' Band from Raiderland. As director of bands, Mr. Sudduth oversaw all aspects of Tech's band program. He was the conductor of the university's nationally acclaimed Symphonic Band and served as director of the Texas Tech Band & Orchestra Camp, one of the largest youth music camps in the nation. Sudduth also taught arranging and conduction at both the graduate and undergraduate level and was honored with many awards for his contributions to music and his outstanding service to Texas Tech University. He passed away on December 3, 1997 after a lengthy illness.
Professor Keith Bearden retired (spring 2003) from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX where he was associate director of bands and director of the 400 member "Goin' Band from Raiderland". In addition, he conducted the University Concert Band, Court Jesters Basketball Band and taught classes in music education. He was a member of the graduate faculty and played trumpet in the faculty brass quintet. While at Texas Tech University, Bearden was honored in 1994 as "Outstanding Faculty Member" by Mortar Board and Omicron Delta Kappa. In 1997 he was honored with membership in the Golden Key International Honor Society. In 1999, the "Goin' Band from Raiderland" received the nation's highest honor for collegiate marching bands-the "Sudler Trophy" presented by the John Philip Sousa Foundation. In 2001, Bearden was honored by Kappa Kappa Psi, the national university band fraternity, with its highest national award, the "Distinguished Service to Music Medal". In 2004, Texas Tech University conferred upon Mr. Bearden, the title of Professor Emeritus in recognition of service to the university. Also in 2004, Professor Bearden was honored with the Distinguished Alumnae Award by the Texas Tech School of Music. And in July of 2004, he was honored by the Texas Bandmasters Association with the Lifetime Meritorious Achievement Award.
2003 – 2009
Christopher M. Anderson became the Associate Director of Bands, Director of Athletic Bands, and Assistant Professor of Music at Texas Tech University in 2003. He holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Abilene Christian University under Fred J. Allen and a Master of Music in Conducting from Northwestern University under John P. Paynter. Mr. Anderson serves as the director of the Goin’ Band from Raiderland, the Court Jesters and the Concert Band. He teaches music education courses and is a member of the Graduate Faculty. In addition to his teaching duties, he does a great deal of arranging for college marching bands, competitive high school bands and the Goin’ Band. He has also done arrangements for jazz ensemble, concert band, and saxophone quartet.
Anderson joins the faculty at Texas Tech from Stephen F. Austin State University where he directed the Lumberjack Marching Band and the Roarin’ Buzzsaw basketball band. He also directed Chamber Winds, the Symphonic Band, and made many guest appearances with the SFA Wind Ensemble. Mr. Anderson served as an administrator for the Summer Band Camp program at SFA and actively participated in curriculum planning for music education including marching band techniques, conducting courses, and student teacher mentoring.
Mr. Anderson previously served as Associate Director of Bands at Abilene Christian University directing the “Big Purple” marching band and teaching conducting and arranging courses. Prior to his appointment at ACU, he taught in the Texas public schools at Keller High School receiving first division ratings at UIL and other competitions and placing many students in the TMEA all-state band and orchestra.
Anderson is a member of the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, College Band Directors National Association and the College Music Society. He has sponsored and is an honorary member of both Tau Beta Sigma and Kappa Kappa Psi.