Edwin Hampton, Legendary Leader of the Marching 100 Passes Away

The Purple Knights during Mardi Gras

The Purple Knights during Mardi Gras

Edwin Hampton, the longtime, highly acclaimed, band director for St. Augustine High School passed away yesterday (July 20, 2009) after a long illness.  Mr. Hampton mentored thousands of musicians over the course of his 50+-year career leading the legendary “Marching 100.”  Some of the musicians who matriculated through the ranks of his institution include Russell Batiste, of the Funky Meters, PBS and other bands and Ajay Mallory, a former member of the Rebirth Brass Band.  In 2002, he took the Purple Knights, as the band is known, the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena, California.  It was the first time a New Orleans high school band appeared in the parade associated with the Rose Bowl.

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