Music group of Western Salvation Army leaders debuts at Alaska Congress.
Territorial Executive Band and Songsters
by Jenni Ragland and Neil Smith, Bandmaster –
Alaska Congress delegates welcomed the Western Territorial Executive Council Band and Songsters for their debut performance in Sitka.
Members of the Territorial Executive Council (TEC) first discussed the idea for this ensemble at their meeting last fall, as a way to support Commissioners Phil and Pat Swyers at their final Alaska Congress before retirement. According to Territorial Music Secretary, Bandmaster Neil Smith, “When I was made aware that the members of TEC were to attend the Alaska Congress as our featured musicians, I was a little nervous—especially since I was to be their leader!”
The groups added significantly to the weekend. After blowing the dust and cobwebs off their instruments, the 16 members of the band played the march “Star Lake” and a new march called “Wyndfield,” as well as a few old favorites such as “Bognor Regis” and “O How I Love Jesus.”
The vocal group, which included all of the TEC members, concentrated on music they already knew such as “To God Be the Glory” and “I Bring Them to Jesus” as well as newer songs—“So We’ll Lift Up the Banner” and “He Leadeth Me.” They also vocally supported the men’s and women’s rallies.
Some of the TEC members had never visited Alaska, so this was a special blessing for them, especially with the beautiful weather we experienced during the Congress weekend.
Gracious and accommodating, the TEC members were an inspiration to the folks attending the Alaska Congress.