Riders Drumline teach students the beat of the drum

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Riders Drumline teach students the beat of the drum – Oct 22, 2016

The Riders Drumline can be heard beyond the stadium, but their impact travels much farther than that.

Barrett Swendsen is the band teacher at Bishop Lloyd Middle School in Llyodminster, Alta. He and his students travelled six hours to Regina to play with the drumline.

“In our town were the only thing that’s even close to a drumline and to see what an actual drumline is supposed to be like, they’re all just gob-smacked,” Swendsen said about his students.

Tyler Taylor, Head Coach of the Riders Drumline hosted Swendsen and his students for a drum clinic Saturday morning.

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According to Taylor, drumlines are gaining popularity around the province.

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“It’s funny, it was never a popular activity in Saskatchewan. Its huge in the U.S., Calgary’s got a little bit going on there. I hope it continues to grow,” he said.

“A couple of high schools I know have started a local drumline and they play for their local football team and that’s great to see. We want to keep that going.”

The Riders Drumline consists of 26 drummers who travel from as far as Saskatoon. The tradition began in 2013 — the same year the Riders brought home the cup.

Saskatchewan Roughriders board Chairman, Wayne Morsky was watching the drumline’s joint performance with the cheerleaders. The joint performance is done at each fan fest prior to kick off.

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“We’ve seen them perform at the plaza of honour. They’ve played at many community events and it just helps bring that hype up. And when they start to play at a game, you can’t help but march with them,” Morsky said.

Swendsen said he is already making plans to return with more students next year.

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