Kadet Q&A with Mr. Shaw and Mr. Musick

Who better to query new Air Academy Band Director Joe Musick than retired Band Director Rick Shaw?

Mr. Joe Musick and Mr. Rick Shaw at the 2018 Homecoming Game.

Mr. Rick Shaw directed Air Academy's band program for 16 years, from 1984 - 2000.  With experience like that, he knew just what to ask Mr. Joe Musick in his first year at the helm. 

What are three words people might use to describe you?

Energetic, passionate and flexible.

After being at Eagleview as well as on the AAHS Marching staff for several years, how do you feel that prepared you for your current position?

I feel as though I have an excellent understanding of our unique community and students. I love that I get the chance to see students who I started on their instruments in 6th grade continue through and flourish in the high school program.

Do you have any short and/or long-term goals for yourself and/or the program?

My short term goals would be to stay competitive in Colorado state marching competitions and strive for the excellence necessary to capture our 13th State Marching Championship. I would also like to continue the long standing tradition of excellence in concert and jazz performance. Long term goals are to continue to grow the program into a nationally competitive program and hopefully participate in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade in the near future. I would also like to continue to see our award winning color guard grow and eventually consistently compete at the WGI world championships.

One of the most difficult aspects of being a high school band director is maintaining balance in your life. How do you approach this challenge?

I approach this challenge with my family always in mind first.

If a new family were to visit with you about the possibility of them moving to the area and asked you about Air Academy High and the band program, what would you share with them?

I would share that this is truly a special place and a special organization. The band program has a long tradition of excellence and we need outstanding young adults with a passion for music to continue that tradition.

Have you ever thought about the fact that you are only the sixth director of bands in the 61 years of Air Academy High School? What do you hope will be your legacy?

I hope my legacy is one of consistency. Consistent excellence, consistent growth, and consistently providing life changing experiences for students.

What does the Kadet Motto "A Matter of Pride" mean to you?

Everything we do, we do at a high level. Take ownership of every aspect of your life, and strive to do your best ALL THE TIME. 

Education and background:

During the academic year, Joe is the Director of Bands Air Academy High School in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He previously served as band director at Eagleview Middle School, Moore Middle School, and Pomona High School.

Joe received his Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Colorado at Boulder where he studied with Dana Biggs, Matthew Roeder, Terry Sawchuk and Allan McMurray.

Drum Corps has been an active part of Joe's life for more than a decade. Joe was a marching member of The Blue Knights Drum & Bugle Corps, The Crossmen Drum & Bugle Corps, and finished his marching career with the Santa Clara Vanguard Drum & Bugle Corps.His instructional career with drum corps started with the Spirit of Atlanta Drum & Bugle Corps where he was on the brass staff. Joe was then fortunate to join the instructional staff of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps, and eventually Joe served the drum corps as the Brass Caption Head. Joe was also the visual designer for The Battalion Drum and Bugle Corps from Provo, UT.

As a designer and clinician, Joe has been active working with bands of various sizes.Joe has been a successful visual designer for drum corps, high school marching bands, and indoor ensembles around the country.

His passion for music education has turned into a stimulating and fulfilling career, and he could not imagine doing anything else.

Want to learn more about Air Academy Band? Visit their website at https://airacademyband.org.



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Tuesday, 03 October 2023


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