ASHLAND --One of the area�s longest-running and most beloved musical acts took the stage at the Paramount Arts Center on Friday night with the purpose of providing some high and middle school students with a glimpse of real working musicians in action.
Blue Max, which has been together in one form or another since 1978, played a show organized by the Kentucky Music Educators Association District 8. A number of those in the audience were students from 15 different counties who were in town to participate in the all-district band competition.
Terry Thompson, a retired Paul G. Blazer High School band director who�s still active with the KMEA, said the concert came about as a result of his friendship with Blue Max members Gary Donalson and Ritch Collins, the group�s lead singer/keyboardist and guitarist, respectively.
In the past, Thompson said, music professors from Morehead State University and other have played concerts for students during all-district band week. However, this year, the organization wanted to do something a little different.
Thompson also noted that all of the members of Blue Max were members of their high school bands.
Friday�s performance was by the big-band iteration of Blue Max, which features a full horn section and plays a set list loaded with swing-era classics.
�It�s the hits of yesterday, with a rock touch,� said Collins, who worked as the group�s sound engineer before becoming a member.
According to Donalson, the band�s lone original member, Blue Max came about as result of a merger of two bands � one based in Ashland and the other in Dayton, Ohio. Over the years, the band has also been based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and in Nashville, he said. The group has played all over the U.S., as well as in Europe, Central America, South America and the Caribbean.
More than 30 musicians have played with Blue Max over the lifespan of the group, and plans are in the works to bring back as many of them as possible later this year, Donalson said. A Blue Max reunion is scheduled to be Memorial Day weekend at Greenbo Lake State Park amphitheater, he said.
Long-running act plays Paramount
Brew Crew brightens day for RMS teachers
There was a knock on the classroom door and the next thing Kim Blanton saw was a steaming cup of hot chocolate and the smiling face of Jesse Allen.
Amending the Constitution?
Some students at Greenup County High School ended their day Tuesday with a fresh respect for the nation’s founders.
Hands, Faces, and Voices
A hundred pairs of eyes locked onto Cynthia Changaris, tracking her every move. A hundred pairs of ears strained to hear every word of the hoary old ghost story Changaris was telling.
Getting gross at camp
Without waiting for an introduction, Sunni Walters brandished a baggie of red goop and confided in a visitor: “We made blood! Yesterday we made snot!”
Pawing through some pages
Lady is a good reading companion if you want one who sits quietly, sometimes thumps her tail during the good parts, and gives you a high-five at the end of the page.
A salute to service
Dozens of cadets placed thousands of American flags at the burial sites of military veterans within Rose Hill Burial Park Friday morning, providing each with a slow salute and considering themselves fortunate for the opportunity to be there.
Learning to let go
One by one, 27 children picked their way down a sandy slope to the bank of the Little Sandy River, their hands held carefully on top of the red plastic cups they carried.
Hatcher principal Greene taking over Verity helm
Hatcher Principal David Greene won’t be out of a job when the elementary closes at the end of this school year.
Making mound music
The composition Boyd County Middle School band members will be performing Thursday prompts them to think about more than the notes they’re playing.
- More Schools Headlines
- Brew Crew brightens day for RMS teachers