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Friday, May 6, 2016

Etched in the mind

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

With family of the late Jim Dressler in attendance, the Brazil Concert Band, led by Matthew Huber, rehearsed Tuesday evening in preparation for Sunday's season-opening performance of "Seen and Heard," which will be dedicated to Dressler's memory. Dressler (July 31, 1935-Jan. 29, 2011) was the former long-time editor of The Brazil Times and a big fan of the Brazil Concert Band. A photo gallery of the rehearsal is available for viewing on this site. Jason Jacobs Photo. [Order this photo]
* Brazil Concert Band director dedicates first performance of year to long-time friend

Matt Huber will always remember Jim Dressler's enthusiasm for projects that would better the community.

Anytime a project was set up to help Forest Park, for example, Huber always worried about vandalism.

But Dressler always reminded him that vandalism could be taken care of. All you had to do was "take care of it."

"That, to me, was one of his highest virtues," Huber said of Dressler, who died earlier this year. "Jim was a member of a class of people that see that things get done. Jim said, 'We don't do things because we're afraid someone will tear it up. If something happens, take care of it.'"

The long-time Brazil Times' editor spent 38 years in the field of journalism. He was widely known for his weekly column, "Seen and Heard."

On Sunday, Huber will direct The Brazil Concert Band through its first performance of the 2011 year, "Seen and Heard," in memory of his long-time friend.

Huber said he had known Dressler for approximately 30 years, the length of time he has directed the concert band.

While working with Dressler, Huber learned quite a bit about putting together concert band press releases.

"Back then, I typed them and handed them to him," Huber said. "He taught me how to write what he called newspaper-style and he taught me in a newspaper column, one sentence could actually be a paragraph.

"Once he taught me how to do that, the articles were much smoother. I appreciated that, the lesson in journalism from Jim."

On Jan. 29, 2011, Huber received the devastating news that his friend had died. He learned of Dressler's death from concert band trombonist Norman Hanson, who attended the same church as Dressler.

"I was extremely sad to learn that my friend had died," Huber said. "It was a shock."

Immediately, Huber said he concocted the idea of paying tribute to Dressler with the first concert of the 2011 season.

"I thought I'd like to honor Jim's memory with the concert," Huber said. "'Seen and Heard' seemed to be such a natural to kick all this off."

Jim Dressler
Huber contacted Dressler's wife of 47 years, Janice, explaining the idea.

The family immediately gave its blessing.

"I wanted them to be aware," Huber said. "They were elated. Janice and (their sons) were real happy Jim would be honored in such a way."

Matt Huber
Dressler, a long-time spectator of concert band performances, will be honored during the Sunday performance, which is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m.

The show will include what Huber believed would be fitting numbers Dressler would have enjoyed hearing, including Broadway numbers and more.

"Jim was there every Sunday night for so many years," Huber said. "He liked Broadway musicals. I randomly chose two I thought Jim would enjoy."

Huber added the song, "The Viking March," by K.L. King, would be performed Sunday evening. The Indiana University song came from "The Viking March," and Dressler graduated from IU.

In addition, State Representative Jim Baird will be on-hand to present the Dressler family with a proclamation from the State of Indiana recognizing Dressler's years as a proofreader for the Indiana Legislature.

"Jim Baird's people called us," Huber said. "(Baird) knew Jim through his work as a proofreader at the statehouse."

Huber said many people in the community are excited to come to the performance.

"I've heard people all over town say that are absolutely elated that we're going to honor Jim's memory," Huber said. "People are just delighted."

Throughout the years, Huber has many memories of working with Dressler, including the band shell restoration in 1995, the Hoagy Carmichael Day of Music for the traveling statue in 2007, and the new band shell awning, which was recently placed at the site.

"With Jim, there never was a doubt about a project becoming reality," Huber said. "Jim was a cool guy. He could talk sports. He could talk classical music. He could talk politics. He had such a wide variety of interests.

"I thought he was one of the finest people I've ever met in Clay County."

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What a wonderful idea and a great way to honor Jim's memory! I'm sure his daughters are also happy about the concert being presented in remembrance of their father.

-- Posted by alittleopinion on Thu, Jun 2, 2011, at 8:38 AM

I'm a friend to one of his daughters. Very nice family to know. Him & his family are very good christian family. May God Bless all of you.

-- Posted by To God be the Glory on Thu, Jun 2, 2011, at 10:08 AM

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