Community band di­rec­tor cel­e­brates two decades

The Covington News - - Front Page - AM­BER PITTMAN apittman@cov­

T.K. Adams is ded­i­cated. He’s a ded­i­cated hus­band and fa­ther; he is a ded­i­cated teacher and he has used that ded­i­ca­tion for the last two decades in mak­ing sure the New­ton County Community Band is the ab­so­lute best it can be. Not be­cause he has to, but be­cause of his ded­i­ca­tion to the mu­sic.

But it wasn’t some­thing he took to eas­ily. Still work­ing at his ca­reer as a band in­struc­tor at Cousins Mid­dle School, he was ap­proached by then Mayor Bill Dobbs to start a band for adults in the community. It took five years of think­ing be­fore Adams fi­nally ac­cepted the chal­lenge. Their first step: form­ing a com­mit­tee to fig­ure out how to at­tract mem­bers and get the ball rolling.

They started with ad­ver­tis­ing in The Cov­ing­ton News and sur­pris­ingly, or maybe not, there were sev­eral peo­ple in­ter­ested from the start.

“I had se­niors and se­niors in high school,” Adams laughed.

They started with 20; now they hold solid at about 60 mem­bers. A con­ver­sa­tion early on about when they prac­ticed (Mon­days) and when they held con­certs (four times a year at Christ­mas, spring, Fourth of July and the an­nual lighting of the square), and have stuck to that sched­ule for these many years.

When Adams re­tired, he lost his space for the band to prac­tice, so he ap­proached the New­ton County Board of Ed­u­ca­tion and then Su­per­in­ten­dent E. Wen­dell Clamp, and asked for help. They wanted East­side High School since it was so cen­trally lo­cated, and some band mem­bers come from neigh­bor­ing coun­ties. And they got it. They have been prac­tic­ing at EHS ever since, with no prob­lems what­so­ever — even dur­ing the school year.

And though he has been re­tired for many years, Adams has no plan to step down from the community band any­time soon. The rea­son, even more than the mu­sic, is the peo­ple.

“I have peo­ple who come in and they don’t care what piece they play or where they stand. They’re there to help; they come in to sup­port, and that’s the most beau­ti­ful thing I have seen in my life. That kind of spirit... We all re­spect each other and know the im­por­tance of sup­port. Each mem­ber is im­por­tant. That’s the kind of spirit we have and that just makes my heart feel good.”

File photo /The Cov­ing­ton News

Pic­tures like the one above have be­come com­mon­place in Cov­ing­ton, as T.K. Adams has been di­rect­ing the New­ton County Community Band for 20 years. Af­ter all those years, Mr. Adams pas­sion for mu­sic has never sub­sided.

Louise and T.K. Adams are one of Cov­ing­ton’s most well-known, ac­tive and beloved cou­ples.

Gabriel Khouli /The Cov­ing­ton News

A will­ing photo sub­ject, community band di­rec­tor T.K. Adams di­rects the mem­o­ries of his life, mu­si­cal and oth­er­wise.

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