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An Inspirational Pinecone

2019 San Antonio Superlatives

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I figured I'd bring this back. Idea not mine, originally from MadisonBandMan1 (I think). No need to limit it to finalists only!

 

Best general effect:

Best visual:

Best music:

Best visual concept:

Best show idea/concept:

Best solo:

Best feature:

Best musical selection:

Most innovative show:

Most original concept:

Best crowd appeal:

Most underrated:

Most improved:

Best colorguard:

Best pit:

Best drumline:

Best brass:

Best woodwinds:

Best prop:

Best uniforms:

Best guard uniforms:

Best overall pre-show:

Best overall opener:

Best overall ballad:

Best overall closer:

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Best general effect: Leander

Best visual: Vandegrift

Best music: Hebron/Marcus

Best visual concept: CTJ

Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands

Best solo: VR soprano sax

Best feature: Keller trombones

Best musical selection: When She Loved Me (Oak Ridge)

Most innovative show: Bowie?

Most original concept: Cedar Ridge

Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands

Most underrated: North Shore

Most improved: Klein Oak

Best colorguard: Reagan

Best pit: Bowie

Best drumline: North Shore

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Marcus

Best prop: The Woodlands’s New York New York/Wakeland’s rocket

Best uniforms: Hebron

Best guard uniforms: The Woodlands

Best overall pre-show: Leander

Best overall opener: The Woodlands

Best overall ballad: Oak Ridge/Hebron/Leander (I love ballads)

Best overall closer: Keller

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Best general effect: Reagan

Best visual: Vista

Best music: Hebron

Best visual concept: FloMo

Best show idea/concept: Leander

Best solo: CTJ king soloists

Best feature: Hebron brass double tongue feature

Best musical selection: TWHS

Most innovative show: Reagan or TWHS

Most original concept: FloMo

Best crowd appeal: CTJ

Most underrated: The Woodlands

Most improved: LD Bell

Best colorguard: Marcus

Best pit: Vandegrift

Best drumline: Vandegrift

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Hebron

Best prop: Timber Creek’s newspapers or Vista Ridge’s giant turntable

Best uniforms: Vandegrift

Best guard uniforms: Flower Mound

Best overall pre-show: Leander

Best overall opener: Reagan

Best overall ballad: Leander

Best overall closer: Hebron

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Best GE: Reagan (Leander is a close 2nd for me)

Best Visual: Vista Ridge

Best Show Concept: CTJ

Best Solo: Either Vandegrift's trombone, CTJ's 2 soloist, and I also enjoyed Keller's trumpet soloist.

Best Feature: Hebrons Trumpet feature

Best Musical Selections: James Bowie

Most innovative: Woodlands

Most Original Concept: Flower Mound or Woodlands

Best Appeal: CTJ

Most Underrated: RR or Keller

Most Improved: RR

Best Guard: Reagan

Best pit: Probably Vandegrift, unsure though

Best Drumline: Round Rock(check out a video of them on Flomarching instagram) or Vandegrift

Best Brass: Undecided (everyone is too good)

Best Woodwinds: Undecided

Best Prop:  Vistas Turning Table and Cages

Best Uniforms: Round Rock, (with ctjs plumes in a close second)

Best Guard Uniforms: TWHS

Best Pre-show: Leander

Best Opener: CTJ

Best Ballad: Vandegrift or Leander

Best Closer: Keller

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Best general effect: Ronald Reagan
Best visual: Ronald Reagan
Best music: Vandegrift
Best visual concept: Ronald Reagan
Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands
Best solo: CTJ/Leander
Best feature: The Woodlands
Best musical selection: The Woodlands
Most innovative show: Ronald Reagan
Most original concept: The Woodlands
Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands
Most underrated: LD Bell
Most improved: Pearland
Best colorguard: The Woodlands
Best pit: CTJ
Best drumline: Ronald Reagan
Best brass: Hebron
Best woodwinds: Vandegrift
Best prop: Leander
Best uniforms: The Woodlands
Best guard uniforms: Vista Ridge
Best overall pre-show: Ronald Reagan
Best overall opener: Ronald Reagan
Best overall ballad: The Woodlands
Best overall closer: Leander
 
Yes I understand the caption awards are the same as the results in finals. I agree with them.
 
Leander is the "guilty pleasure" of the year for me. I mean, imagine watching a closer on a normal day, when you have never seen the closer before. Then, imagine what would happen when after a nuclear countdown clock finished, 1812 Overture blasts in your face. That is performance perfection. And I can't stop listening to it.
 
I seem to be one of the few people that considers TWHS as an Eagle contender this year. I'm not arguing they deserved a better placement in SA finals this year, in fact, I agree with 8th 100%. However, this is a band that ALWAYS makes insane cleaning strides the last couple weeks of the season. And this is the first year in a while where there is a two week gap between SA finals and BOA Grand Finals. Of course I'm not denying Vandegrift as the clear front runner, or even Avon for that matter. TWHS's show this year is a banger, and I see it making headlines in Indy.
 
And gg Reagan.
 
 

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What was the phrase the TXBands bloggers used? Something like "Best Jam Session"? That would be The Woodlands. I've loved that section of the show even when I was just hearing it on the poor quality football stream. And I really like that they extended that section a bit more, and made the transition to the closer less jarring.

 

And BenedictCucumberpatch, I'm with you (surprise? Not!). I think the show has the potential with the crowd appeal of repeating Hebron 2015's unexpected catapult up at Grand Nationals. Who was talking about them before GN's that year?

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What was the phrase the TXBands bloggers used? Something like "Best Jam Session"? That would be The Woodlands. I've loved that section of the show even when I was just hearing it on the poor quality football stream. And I really like that they extended that section a bit more, and made the transition to the closer less jarring.

 

And BenedictCucumberpatch, I'm with you (surprise? Not!). I think the show has the potential with the crowd appeal of repeating Hebron 2015's unexpected catapult up at Grand Nationals. Who was talking about them before GN's that year?

 

That "Best Jam Session" is my "Best feature" superlative. Every time the horns started going up and down I began to headbang to 40s swing.

 

And couldn't agree more, I just hope the same fate doesn't befall TWHS that Hebron experienced that year in Finals.

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That "Best Jam Session" is my "Best feature" superlative. Every time the horns started going up and down I began to headbang to 40s swing.

 

And couldn't agree more, I just hope the same fate doesn't befall TWHS that Hebron experienced that year in Finals.

 

Agreed. The rule change for top/bottom half (which I actually have some issues with, but that is another discussion) may help that situation. I was there in 2015, and going on first really hurt Hebron from a crowd response perspective. People are still coming in, and the stands just weren't full. People were also not yet "warmed up" to all the shows and they just didn't get quite the response they needed. It was just an unfortunate draw. If they would have gone off 7th rather than 1st, well, anything was possible that night.

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Best general effect: Ronald Regan

Best visual: CTJ

Best music: Ronald Regan

Best visual concept: Ronald Regan

Best show idea/concept: the woodlands

Best solo: vista soprano

Best feature: Hebron brass feature

Best musical selection: Bowie

Most innovative show: Bowie

Most original concept: Woodlands

Best crowd appeal: Woodlands

Most underrated: Bowie

Most improved: Pearland

Best colorguard: Leander

Best pit: Vandegrift

Best drumline: Vandegrift

Best brass: Marcus

Best woodwinds: Keller

Best prop: vista rotating stage

Best uniforms: CTJ

Best guard uniforms: Bowie

Best overall pre-show: Bowie

Best overall opener: Vandegrift

Best overall ballad: Leander

Best overall closer: Bowie

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Best general effect: The Woodlands

Best visual: Vista Murietta

Best music: Vandegrift

Best visual concept: Vista Murietta

Best show idea/concept: Rouse

Best solo: Vandegrift Trombone

Best feature: Oak Ridge

Best musical selection: Lake Travis

Most innovative show: Vista Ridge

Most original concept: Cedar Park

Best crowd appeal: Hendrickson

Most underrated: Roma

Most improved: Wylie

Best colorguard: James Bowie

Best pit: Cedar Ridge

Best drumline: Vista Ridge

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Cedar Ridge

Best prop: Collinsvilles We Are Collinsville Sign

Best uniforms: Claudia Taylor Johnson

Best guard uniforms: Rouse

Best overall pre-show: Vista Ridge

Best overall opener: Pearland

Best overall ballad: Leander

Best overall closer: Lake Travis

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Best general effect: Ronald Reagan

Best visual: Ronald Reagan

Best music: Vandegrift

Best visual concept: Flower Mound

Best show idea/concept: Reagan

Best solo: Coppell Trombone and Flugelhorn

Best feature: Hebron’s brassline in opener

Best musical selection: Coppell/Vista Ridge

Most innovative show: Reagan

Most original concept: TWHS

Best crowd appeal: CTJ/Leander

Most underrated: Coppell

Most improved: Pearland

Best colorguard: Bowie

Best pit: Reagan

Best drumline: Vandegrift/Vista Ridge

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Flower Mound

Best prop: Leander

Best uniforms: Coppell

Best guard uniforms: TWHS

Best overall pre-show: Marcus

Best overall opener: Reagan

Best overall ballad: Coppell/Marcus

Best overall closer: Reagan

 

Taking some time to talk about some I felt quite strongly about, and also as a disclaimer that I wasn’t sure about a few, from not paying as much attention to say guard uniforms or just maybe not sure about the originality of a show concept, stuff like that. But boyyy did I enjoy Coppell’s soloists and their ballad, a really beautiful, ethereal sound with the whole band joining in and the delicate sound of the flugel on top! A sound I didn’t hear from any other group that weekend, I do wish they had another chance to perform at finals! I also enjoyed Vista’s selections of Swan Lake and also personally, the Prokofiev Cinderella Suite, with that being music I played in my first marching school back in high school, that just made me feel warm inside when I heard them play it.

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Best general effect: The Woodlands
Best visual: Ronald Reagan
Best music: Vandegrift
Best visual concept: Coppell
Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands
Best solo: Rouse 
Best feature: Reagan trombone
Best musical selection: CTJ everything
Most innovative show: Reagan
Most original concept: The Woodlands
Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands
Most underrated: Wylie
Most improved: Lake Travis
Best colorguard: Vista Murrieta
Best pit: Vista Ridge
Best drumline: Cedar Ridge
Best brass: Hebron
Best woodwinds: CTJ
Best prop: Westwood snowman
Best uniforms: Vandegrift
Best guard uniforms: Vista Ridge
Best overall pre-show: Vandegrift
Best overall opener: Vista Ridge
Best overall ballad: Reagan
Best overall closer: Pearland

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Best general effect: The Woodlands

Best visual: Ronald Reagan

Best music: Vandegrift

Best visual concept: Hebron

Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands

Best solo: Vandegrift Trombone

Best feature: Keller Trombones

Best musical selection: Leander (1812)

Most innovative show: Hebron

Most original concept:Claudia Taylor Johnson

Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands

Most underrated: Cedar Park

Most improved: Westwood

Best colorguard: Ronald Reagan

Best pit: Vandegrift

Best drumline: Vandegrift

Best brass: Leander

Best woodwinds: Ronald Reagan

Best prop: Vista Ridge turn table

Best uniforms: Round Rock

Best guard uniforms: Bowie

Best overall pre-show: Ronald Reagan

Best overall opener: Leander

Best overall ballad: Vandegrift

Best overall closer: Leander

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Best general effect: Leander
Best visual: Ronald Reagan 
Best music: Vandegrift 
Best visual concept: Ronald Reagan 
Best show idea/concept: Claudia Taylor Johnson 
Best solo: Vista Ridge
Best feature: Ronald Reagan's Brass Feature In 2nd Movement
Best musical selection: Leander: Britney Spear's Toxic
Most innovative show: The Woodlands
Most original concept: Flower Mound 
Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands
Most underrated: John B. Alexander
Most improved: L.D. Bell OR Pearland
Best colorguard: Ronald Reagan 
Best pit: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best drumline: Leander
Best brass: Hebron 
Best woodwinds: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best prop: Vista Ridge's Mandarins Spin Prop OR Vandegrift's Blue Props
Best uniforms: Vandegrift 
Best guard uniforms: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best overall pre-show: Leander
Best overall opener: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best overall ballad: Hebron 
Best overall closer: Leander

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There were so many standouts I couldn't choose just one for a lot of these.

 

Best general effect: Ronald Reagan

Best visual: Vandy

Best music: Vandy(for cleanliness)/Reagan(for raw power)

Best visual concept: The Woodlands (they really ran with their concept uniform-wise)

Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands (just had a lot of fun watching this one)

Best solo: CTJ Trombonist/Vista Ridge Soprano Sax, Rouse clarinet

Best feature: Various Vandy trumpet features, Cedar Ridge's Taiko Drums, Reagan's Trombones, the list goes on and on

Best musical selection: Leander

Most innovative show: JBA

Most original concept: Cedar Ridge, Hendrickson, Ronald Reagan, Flower Mound, Round Rock.

Best crowd appeal: Ronald Reagan

Most underrated: John B. Alexander (score-wise), Prosper (forum buzz-wise)

Most improved: Pearland, Round Rock

Best colorguard: Ronald Reagan

Best pit: Cedar Ridge

Best drumline: Cedar Ridge

Best brass: Ronald Reagan

Best woodwinds: Vandegrift

Best prop: Vista's big stage, L.D. Bell's break away tarps/scrims, Woodlands "New York, New York", Leander Smokestacks, once again the list goes and on.

Best uniforms: Woodlands, Cedar Ridge, Ronald Reagan, Vandegrift

Best guard uniforms: Woodlands, Vandy, Rouse, Flower Mound

Best overall pre-show: Leander (absolutely love the vibe created)

Best overall opener: Leander, Hebron

Best overall ballad: Ronald Reagan, Vista (that soloist was KILLER), Hebron

Best overall closer: Cedar Ridge, love how it ramps up and get so intense, L.D. Bell had a super pretty closer too, and Leander, wow what a visual experience.

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Best general effect: Ronald Reagan
Best visual: Flower Mound
Best music: Vandegrift
Best visual concept: Ronald Reagan
Best show idea/concept: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best solo: Vista Ridge's soprano sax
Best feature: Hebron's trumpets in their opener
Best musical selection: Ron's Victory by Nicholas Hooper (Coppell)/I Just Can't Wait To Be King from The Lion King (Claudia Taylor Johnson)
Most innovative show: The Woodlands
Most original concept: Claudia Taylor Johnson
Best crowd appeal: The Woodlands/Leander
Most underrated: Keller/John B. Alexander
Most improved: Pearland
Best colorguard: Ronald Reagan/The Woodlands
Best pit: Coppell
Best drumline: Ronald Reagan/Flower Mound
Best brass: Marcus
Best woodwinds: Hebron
Best prop: Vista Ridge
Best uniforms: Coppell
Best guard uniforms: Coppell
Best overall pre-show: Ronald Reagan
Best overall opener: Vandegrift
Best overall ballad: Ronald Reagan
Best overall closer: Leander/Claudia Taylor Johnson
 
Definitely a lot of Reagan in these superlatives. I just absolutely love their show and think it's one of the best shows we've had in quite some time. It surpasses Flower Mound 2016 for me, and probably CTJ 2017 as well.

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VERY LATE:

Best general effect: Reagan

Best visual: Vandegrift

Best music: Hebron

Best visual concept: Reagan

Best show idea/concept: Woodlands

Best solo: Vandegrift Trombone

Best feature: Hebron

Best musical selection: Coppell

Most innovative show: Reagan

Most original concept: Flowermound

Best crowd appeal: Woodlands

Most underrated: Coppell

Most improved: Round Rock

Best colorguard: Reagan

Best pit: Cedar Ridge

Best drumline: Cedar Ridge

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Hebron

Best prop: Vista Ridge

Best uniforms: Vandegrift, Cedar Ridge, Woodlands

Best guard uniforms: Vista Ridge

Best overall pre-show: Reagan

Best overall opener: Hebron

Best overall ballad: Vandegrift

Best overall closer: Leander

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I'll join in, I guess

Best general effect: Ronald Reagan

Best visual: Ronald Reagan

Best music: Hebron

Best visual concept: Vista Ridge

Best show idea/concept: The Woodlands

Best solo: CTJ Trombone/Sax

Best feature: Keller trombones

Best musical selection: Stoic by John Powell, Keller

Most innovative show: The Woodlands

Most original concept: Vista Murrieta

Best crowd appeal: Claudia Taylor Johnson

Most underrated: Keller Central

Most improved: Westwood

Best colorguard: Ronald Reagan

Best pit: Burleson Centennial

Best drumline: Burleson Centennial

Best brass: Hebron

Best woodwinds: Marcus

Best prop: Leander reactor chambers

Best uniforms: Westwood

Best guard uniforms: Vandegrift

Best overall pre-show: Ronald Reagan

Best overall opener: Vandegrift

Best overall ballad: Vandegrift

Best overall closer: Keller

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