Braxton, James Thomas 2007-12-03

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James Braxton, long-time Lubbock resident, talks about his life. In particular he discusses his education, music career and experiences as a band teacher.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: James Thomas Braxton

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: December 03, 2007

Location: Lubbock, Texas

Interviewer: Daniel Sanchez

Length: 01:47:03


Personal Information; Family information, homes; Chores they completed; Fondest memory – fishing, playing in the band; Upbringing, neighborhood (middle class); Father and mother had different rules; First School: Dunbar Elementary School, Tulsa, Oklahoma; More about Dunbar Elementary School; Curriculum, School Levels; Instruments allowed playing at each level; Played Violin in 6th Grade; Saxophone and Clarinet in 7th Grade; Playing in the band; About Fiddle; Played in Band Competitions, awards; Making band troops and playing at game; Went to Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama; Went to Atlantic City, New Jersey to make money; Start of his music career; Job in a town 65 miles away; Went to Philadelphia; Came back to Tuskegee to go back to college; Came back to Tulsa, played saxophone in his brother’s school; Experience, feelings; Met his wife, Bernice Robert; Played in the army band; University of Nebraska for 1 year; Texas College for 2 years; Received Masters at University of Denver; Went to Oklahoma; Band master at El Paso, Texas for 5 years; Tried to learn Spanish; Came to Lubbock, Texas in 1960; Became Assistant Band Director; Head Band Director; Went to Atkins Junior High School as band director; Got the band to number 1 rating; Teaching experience; His children, their careers; His son – Thomas Braxton; Feelings about his students doing well; His piano teacher in Nebraska; His student who learns Saxophone from him; Teaching music is difficult; What music means to him; Everyone must learn some music; How difficult it is to replicate someone’s work; About Song; People expect certain songs to be played; People who know music enjoy it more; Interruption; Interview Continued; Home; Medical Care: Dr. Chapman; Dentist: Dr. Johnson; Changes after desegregation; Wife moved to Hardwick Elementary; Various schools he taught; Retirement 1985; Dunbar High School; Black teachers were moved to other schools; Sent to Atkins Junior High; Wife’s work and retirement; About his cars and boat; Wife member of AARP (American Association of Retired Persons); Changes in Lubbock since he came; Traffic, development, convenience; Played some of his music.

Access Information

Original Recording Format:

Recording Format Notes:

Transcript: No transcript available

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