Dennis Johnson

Dennis Johnson

Dennis started writing for percussion as a high school student and received a one year full tuition scholarship to Auburn University playing several audition pieces that he wrote as a senior in high school. He (his parents) had to pay for the additional four years at Auburn but were thankful for the free first year!

Early teachers were Mike Aitken and long-time D.C.I. adjudicator Jim Dinkins. Dennis also studied with Tony Van Free from Alabama State University and Dr. Johnnie Vinson from Auburn University.

During the 1980 season Dennis marched in the snare line of the Spirit of Atlanta Drum & Bugle Corps under the instruction of D.C.I. Hall of Fame member Tom Float. Spirit tied with Bridgemen that year for the high percussion award at the D.C.I. Finals in Birmingham, Alabama. Dennis also taught and wrote for Southwind Drum and Bugle Corps during the 1981 and 1982 seasons.

After graduating from Auburn University he started a career as a band director and served in that capacity for over 30 years. His bands consistently scored superior ratings and best in class awards in addition to playing for two NFL football games, numerous gubernatorial parades, as well as for sitting President George H. W. Bush.

Dennis played drum set professionally for a season in the Smoky Mountain resort area of Pigeon Forge,Tennessee as part of a variety stage show. After crossing that experience off his bucket list he served as assistant band director at University School of Nashville where he contacted and had lunch with Chris and Chris at a local Tex-Mex Restaurant. As a result of the meeting they agreed to publish several of his rudimental snare drum solos. Thanks for lunch guys!

Presently Dennis teaches and writes for the percussion section at Alabama Christian Academy in Montgomery, Alabama where he also teaches private lessons on all wind instruments to students in the band program. He also maintains an active adjudication schedule judging marching band competitions and solo & ensemble festivals.

Works by Dennis Johnson