I just saw on the BBC (err Brass Band of Columbus) website (www.brassbandofcolumbus.org), the offical announcement that Dr. Paul Droste (founder/director of the BBC) is retiring. As my former director for 10 years (5 years with the BBC and 5 with COBB) I can't tell you how much he has meant to brass banding in the States (and my personal playing). As a Yamaha clinician he has helped many bands in the States get there feet of the ground. As the Director of the BBC he has lead them to 9 North American championships in 15 tries. He has helped the band produce 6 (I think) commercial recordings and took the band to Symphony Hall for the Bands of the World Concert (at the Open) in 2000. (The truly amzing part is he neve got paid for those twenty years except with intrinsic rewards!!) A great conductor, a great man and will be sorely missed.