by Blair Tellers
"In a world of peace and love, music would be the universal language."
Henry David Thoreau
n modern day colloquial, it can be fairly legitimate to agree the words "big" and "ass" go together like peanut butter and jelly--almost so much that the phrase "bigass" could be an actual word by the time the new Webster for 2012 hits bookstands. It's the popularity of this frequently used term that causes Cakes Stafford, 51, to find herself correcting friends and strangers when the name of the drum corps she belongs to is misconstrued. "It's Giant Ass Drum Corps," she says. "Not Big Ass Drum Corps." "Giant" and "Ass," additionally, denote the size of group--"not the booty," reminds founder and leader Stormy Oshun. Created in Spokane as part of an effort to re-vamp the local pride parade, their sassy name isn't the only thing turning heads. The Giant Ass Drum Corps' resourcefulness, playful sense of 2
humor and energetic vibes impart an impressionable breath of fresh air for all audiences at attention. "Participation in the Pride Parade was falling apart, and were looking for ways to pump it up," says Oshun, a Washington native. "So I said I would bring some kind of contingent. I called up everybody I knew and said `Let's start up this bucket drumming thing.'" Oshun wanted to make it accessible financially, and to this day the GADC has thumped away successfully as any other marching band--on five-gallon plastic buckets. "It does actually take a lot more energy to get the sound out the bucket than it does out of some other things," says member Gail Hammer, 55. "I love that the buckets are inexpensive and accessible to anybody. It's just kind of quirky, you know? Its not a serious instrument, and
sometimes we play very serious tunes on them. I just find it delightful." When Oshun created the GADC she had no idea it would evolve into such a dynamic entity within the GLBTQ community-- and beyond. The GADC is approaching its tenth anniversary
| February 2009 | Q View Northwest - Spokane Edition | www.qviewnorthwest.com