I marched in the Blue Knights baritone/euphonium section from 2015 to 2017 and have been teaching on the Brass Staff since 2018. Before this, I marched in the Open Class circuit from 2012 to 2014. I went to Robert E. Lee High School (now L.E.E. High School) in the North East Independent School District in San Antonio, TX. After high school, I attended the University of North Texas where I pursued and completed my Bachelor of Music Education.
Currently, I am the Associate Director of Bands at Agnew Middle School in Mesquite ISD. At first, I marched Blue Knights because my friends were there and I just wanted to get into the World Class circuit. I stayed because I finally found a family. I found a group of people that shared my drive to be the best all day every day, knowing that the standard was always moving up and loving it. My favorite memory of my time with the Blue Knights is from the 2015 season. Playing that amazing closer finals night is an experience that will last me a lifetime. Seeing and hearing the crowd appreciate all the hard work and dedication we put in all summer was the real reward, not the medals. A close second is a fact that I was lucky enough to fulfill my dream of being a DCI soloist in 2017.
Being a Blue Knight has been one of the most life-changing experiences I’ve had the pleasure of having. I’ve gained so many connections with fantastic performers and educators that have all helped me in my professional growth. Being a part of a true family that is so accepting of everyone in their truest self is something that not all groups achieve. When I think of my home away from home, I think of the Blue Knights and their unrelenting pursuit of excellence. I think of a group of people that are willing to put their nose down and grind every day, even when it’s difficult.
For anyone thinking about joining our family, my advice would be to just go for it. Let yourself be a part of the experience that is the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps, even if it’s just for a moment. Our goal is to give everyone we meet the best possible experience in terms of performance and education. Come to camp expecting to work hard, meet new friends, and have the best time of your life. It’s worth it. I would really love to see more Alumni volunteering at camps and throughout to spend time with the future of the organization that we love and hold so dearly. Having that support from those that have experienced the Blue Knights is so important in linking our future to the past. If not volunteering, consider contributing monetarily how you can. We’ve had over 60 years of phenomenal performers, educators, and memories. It’s going to take all of us to continue that legacy. While I was not able to participate in the 60th Anniversary Alumni Corps, I look forward to the day that I can and I hope to see you there.
I go on…
– Jacob Rodriguez