LEE BOYD MONTGOMERY
Lee Boyd Montgomery, Jr. was born in Slaton, Texas on March 28, 1936, to father Lee Boyd, Sr. and mother Mae. Lee Boyd, Jr. was the oldest of four boys and the family settled in Littlefield where the boys all received their education. Lee Boyd fell in love with the trombone and bought his first horn from Earl Ray, studied with Don Hayes, and attended the University of Texas and Texas Tech University, whose band was directed by D.O. Wiley. All three of these conductors are members of the Texas Bandmasters Hall of Fame.
The most influential person in Lee Boyd’s young life was LaVerne Ray, wife of Earl, who set up a “Keep Lee Boyd in School” fund for their new employee, as well as added new scar tissue daily. This put Lee Boyd in a position to hear all reports from the business territory, listen to the band director stories every Saturday morning, and to hear possible solutions to problems from every director in the area.
He also served as Drum Major of the Tech Band. Close to graduation at Tech, he was allowed to teach at Ropesville and he directed the bands there in 1957 and 1958. From there, Lee Boyd moved to Sudan where he quickly established a first division band, winning Sweepstakes each year. From Class A Sudan, to AA Bowie, to AAA Canyon, each band continued the award winning ways.
Lee Boyd even stepped outside Texas to Dodge City, Kansas, a job which Lee Boyd describes as “unique and away from God’s Country.” One year of snow was enough, and the Montgomerys quickly moved back to Texas, this time to Class AAAAA Edinburg, where he spent three successful years, leaving in 1968 to go into business with Otis Claxton for two years. However, the podium still called and Lee Boyd decided to pursue a graduate degree at UT, while serving as a teaching assistant. About this time the Eanes School District opened up their own high school, Westlake High School, and Lee Boyd took over the building of one of the most competitive band programs in the state. For ten years, the Westlake Band grew, changing classification twice, won nine Sweepstakes, two honor bands, toured Europe and Japan, played at the famed Midwest Conference in Chicago, and won other awards in Amarillo, Galveston, Dallas, Houston, Arlington, and Texarkana. During those years, the Westlake Marching Festival was established and the band also won the State Solo and Ensemble three consecutive times. Their appearance at the NBA national convention in Knoxville, Tennessee was followed by a tour of Florida. Those ten years may have been the most active years for one high school band in the state. Son Monty and daughter Misty were members of those bands, on clarinet and oboe. The Westlake Band Concert Series featured guest conductors Arnald Gabriel, Fredrick Fennell, Francis McBeth, and William D. Revelli.
Lee Boyd resigned at Westlake and became band director at Texas Lutheran College for thirteen years, before moving to New Mexico to slow down and be an assistant director at Los Alamos. During that time, he received first divisions with two different bands the same year. He also served as conductor for the Albuquerque Concert Band.
In 1998, he stepped outside the music business while substituting and took over a sixth grade classroom, one and a half blocks from his home in the El Dorado section of Santa Fe. This puts him in a great place for hunting and camping, close to an area rich in Indian art, and scenic beauty.
He is presently President of the Phi Beta Mu chapter in New Mexico, and still serves as clinician and adjudicator throughout the southwest. He has served as President of the Sequin Noon Lions Club, District Governor of 2S-5, and in 2000, he was inducted into the New Mexico Lions Club Hall of Fame. He has held various offices in NBA, TMEA, and has taught camps at ENMU, WT, Tech and TLC.
Lee Boyd Montgomery has provided Texas with superior bands, with outstanding awards, colorful stories, and provided a level of performance to be appreciated. He has a great love for bands, band performance, and a constant urge to reach a new level. Thirty-eight years of podium time has not dimmed the desire of accomplishment.