vhs - The Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps
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The Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps
In 1970, a group of ten buglers was added to the Blue Devils drums and flags, and the corps entered its first competition as the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps. By 1972, the unit, now with over seventy members, advanced from Class B competition to Class A and traveled on tour outside California for the first time, making appearances in the Pacific Northwest. The summer of 1973 marked the Blue Devils first national tour and its first appearance at the Drum Corps International World Championships in Whitewater, Wisconsin.
Finishing 24th of 48 corps, the corps earned Associate membership in DCI. Also in 1973, the Junior drum and bell corps became the Blue Devils B D&B Corps and the younger Blue Devils C D&B Corps was formed. In 1974, the Blue Devils finished in 9th place at the DCI Championships; in 1975 advanced to 3rd place; and in 1976, won the first of the corps' record 18 DCI World Championship titles. After Seawright's retirement in 1984, Mike Moxley became director, and since 1991, the corps has been under the direction of David Gibbs, a former marching member and drum major.
Of special note among the Blue Devils eighteen World Championships are those of 1982, 1994, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2017 when the corps went through the entire season without suffering a defeat. 2009 also marked the first season that one organization won multiple titles, when the Blue Devils won World Class and the Blue Devils B won Open Class having also done it the next year in 2010 and then again in 2014. Over the years, the Devils have often made use of jazz and Latin music repertoires, notably Bill Reddie's Channel One Suite (made famous by Buddy Rich) and charts from the music of Chick Corea and Chuck Mangione and that written for Stan Kenton's big band. Because of their musical style choices, the Devils are one of the corps most associated with jazz
In 2014, the Blue Devils won their sixteenth DCI World Championship and recorded their sixth undefeated season. At the DCI Finals in Indianapolis on August 9, the corps received a record high score of 99.650. In doing so, they beat the second place Bluecoats by a margin of 2.475, bested the previous high of the 2002 Cavaliers and 2005 Cadets by half a point, and earned a perfect score from seven of the eleven judges
On August 8, 2015, the Blue Devils won their seventeenth DCI Championship. It was the corps' first come-from-behind win, after finishing preliminaries in fourth place because of a penalty, trailing Carolina Crown, Bluecoats, and The Cadets and semifinals in second, behind Carolina Crown
Through the corps' 60th Anniversary in 2017, the Blue Devils continue to be a DCI Finalist, with the streak extending through 44 consecutive Top Twelve finishes, including 18 World Class Championships. They also have a run of eleven consecutive seasons of either being champion or runners-up.