CLYDE HOWELL ROWE
Clyde H. Rowe was born on October 13, 1909, in Cisco, Texas. He was the only living child of Jesse Richard Rowe and Edith L. Cooper.
In 1922, he began the study of music with the Cisco High School Band where he played clarinet in the concert and marching bands. He graduated from Cisco High School in 1926. Rowe’s love for music and band developed while a student at Cisco High School.
Clyde entered Hardin-Simmons University in 1927 and became a member of the Cowboy Band which toured Europe in 1929. The band gave concerts at many sites in France, Holland and England. The most memorable of the concerts was at the Paladium in England where the Cowboy Band performed two weeks to standing room only audiences. While in the Cowboy Band, he participated in President Herbert Hoover’s 1929 Presidential Inauguration Parade in Washington, D.C.
At the University, Rowe was President of the Oil Belt Club, and he held membership in the Brands Staff, Press Club and the Social Science Club. He graduated from Hardin-Simmons University with a B.A. degree. Friendships made at the university included D. O. Wiley, Cowboy band director, and this friendship lasted their entire lifetimes.
On October 4, 1932, Clyde Rowe married Ardith Roulston. Their children are Richard, George, Anne and Jan.
In September of 1934, Clyde was hired by the Slaton Independent School District for the purpose of establishing the first high school band ever to exist in the school system. Joe L. Haddon, assistant band director, and Clyde Rowe, director, started the band with two members, Bill N. Ball and Don Hatchett. The band membership grew rapidly, and by mid-November of 1934, the band totaled 60 musicians. The Slaton Tiger Band won many first place awards, and in the spring of 1937, the band received an invitation to compete in a national contest in Oklahoma City. Rowe directed the Slaton Tiger Band through the spring of 1939.
From 1939 to 1941, he taught band at Borger, Texas, and Pharr, Texas. These were important years in his career as by the end of 1943 he had gained the necessary experience and knowledge to accept the position of band director at one of the state’s largest high schools, Amarillo Senior High and Amarillo Sam Houston Junior High.
Rowe’s professional skills and leadership provided the knowledge, inspiration and motivation needed for the bands to enrich their communities and to be successful at competitions. The bands were highly involved in many activities for the Chamber of Commerce and were an important factor in bringing recognition to the city of Amarillo. At the request of school districts in other cities and private business organizations, the Golden Sandies Band participated in parades and provided concerts in Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico. The Sam Houston Junior High Band marched in many local parades and played numerous public concerts.
Rowe’s Golden Sandies Band won Sweepstakes honors at the 1947 Tri¬-State Band Festival in Enid, Oklahoma, and earned a Sweepstakes award in 1948 at the Region I Interscholastic League Music Festival in Canyon, Texas. The Sam Houston Junior High School Band earned a I+ rating at the 1945 TMEA Region I Contest. From 1943-1950, Rowe’s bands won numerous First Division ratings in concert, marching and sight-reading. Band members from the Amarillo schools were awarded many first place medals for their efforts in solo, duet, trio, quartet and quintet competitions at regional music contests.
In 1950, Rowe left teaching at Amarillo and entered the band music business with the Rattan and White Music Company of Amarillo. He was successful in this endeavor, but by 1952, he wanted to return to the challenge of directing bands.
From 1952 through 1967, Clyde Rowe was band director for the Lamesa, Big Spring and Kress (Texas) High Schools. These bands won awards at the UIL music competitions and were a credit to their communities. Rowe retired from teaching after suffering a stroke in 1969.
Clyde Rowe set high standards for his students and motivated them to perform to the maximum of their abilities. Rowe was a member of the Texas Bandmasters Association, Chairman of the Texas Music Educators Association, Region I, and a member of Phi Beta Mu as well as an honorary he member of Kappa Kappa Psi National Band Fraternity. On December 4, 1981, Clyde H. Rowe passed away in San Antonio, Texas.