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Sounds of the Prairie Summer Band registration
is now open.
More information...

Upcoming Events

First Band Rehearsal
Tuesday, 27 May 2014
6:30 PM

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Sounds of the Prairie Community Band

Formerly the carTunes Community Summer Band.

Registration is now open.

About the Sounds of the Prairie Community Band

The Sounds of the Prairie Community Band is a concert/military band sponsored by C.A.R. Performances begin in June and run through August. Rehearsals start in late May or early June. Registration of performers begins in January. (To receive a notice when registration opens, please subscribe to the C.A.R. announcements mailing list.)

For a history of the band, see the Historical Information section.


Concert in the Park
Saturday, 22 June 2013
7:00 - 8:30 PM

Kolb Park in St. Joseph
The band opens its season with a rousing concert in the park. This will be a entertaining and relaxing evening of music which the whole family will enjoy. The event is outdoors. The rain date is Saturday, 29 Jun, same time. The concert is free.
Independence Day Concert
Thursday, 4 July 2013
7:00-8:30 PM

The park behind the Homer Village Hall
Join us for music and fireworks at the Homer Independence Day Celebration. The event is outdoors. The rain date is Saturday, 6 July 2013, same time. The concert is free.
Mid-summer Concert
Sunday, 21 July 2013
5:00-6:30 PM

The Botanical Gardens behind the Museum of the Grand Prairie (Mahomet).
The event is outdoors, weather permitting. Otherwise, the event will be held in the museum. The concert is free.
End-of-season Concert
Saturday, 10 August 2013
5:00-6:30 PM

Southside Church of the Nazarene.
This will be our last performance of the 2013 season. The concert is free.

About the Director

Charles Hess

Rev. Charles Hess has been involved in music most of his life. As a boy in northern Illinois he began studying trombone in 5th grade. His parents encouraged him to become involved in the Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps in 1976. From 1977 through 1982 Rev. Hess performed with the corps and was honored to have the opportunity to conduct the group during his last three years as a member.

After Drum Corps Rev. Hess attended Eastern Illinois University where he received his BS in Music Education in 1991. While at Eastern Rev. Hess had the privilege of being involved in the EIU Jazz Ensemble which received national recognition from Downbeat Magazine as its recipient of Best College Jazz Ensemble Recording. Rev. Hess also performed with jazz greats Clark Terry, Mel Torme, and Dizzy Gillespie as a member of that same group.

Upon graduating Rev. Hess took a position as Director of Bands for four years at the Georgetown-Ridge Farm School District. He then moved to the Danville Public Schools where he was Director of Bands for nine years. During his tenure at DHS Rev. Hess had the distinct honor of being part of the first "Salute to Veterans" Concerts as well as working with the Danville Public School Foundation to commission a new piece of music by noted band composer David Holsinger. Rev. Hess completed his career in music education as a general music teacher at Liberty Elementary School where he helped advance the cause of music education by working to bring in a Yamaha Piano Lab for all students to develop their musical abilities.

Currently Rev. Hess is pastor at the Northside Church of the Nazarene in Danville, Illinois. He is married to Melissa Hess and they have five children; Colin, Tobin, Jadyn, Quinton, and Madeline. He and the family enjoy camping, playing music, and trying to figure out who sits where in the car to best avoid fights.

[Bios for former band directors]

Announcements Mailing List

For those interested in receiving reminders about band performances and the opening of registration, please subscribe to the C.A.R. announcements mailing list.


Registration for each season begins in March. All high school students and adults are welcome to register. Less experienced performers may register with the consent of the director.

There is no geographical limit on who may participate. Anyone willing to attend the most rehearsals is welcome.

Registrations are accepted throughout the season. Regardless of when performers register, they must pay the full registration fee.

No auditions are required, but positions may be limited in order to maintain balance. Positions are filled in the order that the registrations are received.

The registration fee is $25. There is a cap of $50 per family.

For first time members, there is an additional cost of $7.50 to cover the cost of a T-shirt. Additional or replacement T-shirts may also be purchased at the same price. The family registration fee cap does not apply to T-shirts. Once the family registration fee cap is met, you must still pay $7.50 for each T-shirt.

Checks should be made payable to Community Arts Resource.

Please note that the summer band and summer chorus are two different activities. If you plan to participate in both, you must pay separate fees for each activity. Also, the T-shirts for each organization are different, so you must pay a separate fee to purchase each of these as well (unless you already have one from last year).

Please register online. If you cannot register online, you may print the registration form and send the completed form, along with the registration fee, to the address below.

Community Arts Resource
c/o Ross Bundy, President
1704 S. Southfield Drive
Mahomet, IL 61853

Music Availability

The registration fee must be paid before the music is taken.

An initial set of music will be available on Wednesday, 14 May 2014. Performers may call the C.A.R. President to make arrangements to pick up music.

A registration and music pick-up night will be held on Wednesday, 14 May 2014, 5:30 - 8:00 PM, in the East Fellowship Hall of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church.

Recordings of some of the pieces which we may perform this year are found in the Concert Selections section.

Auditions and Seating

No auditions are required in order to participate.

Performers are invited to sit in any order within their section.

Parts are not assigned. Performers are encouraged to agree upon these assignments among themselves. Performers are free to select the part with which they are most comfortable, as long as balance between the parts is maintained. Regardless of the assignment, all performers are encouraged to participate in all rehearsals.

Each section will have a section leader, assigned by the director or band president. The section leader is responsible for making sure that all parts are covered, particularly for concerts. Section leaders may help to organize and direct section rehearsals, if the section feels that it is necessary. Section leaders will be part of the calling tree. In the event of a last minute change or cancellation, they will be responsible for contacting the others in their sections. If a player will be absent during a rehearsal or concert, they should inform the section leader, band president, and band director. Section leaders may be asked to do other minor tasks such as collecting music from the sections.

In all cases, please note that the director may make changes in seating or part assignments at any time at his or her discretion.


Rehearsals are held on Tuesday evenings, 6:30-8:00 PM. (See a complete schedule below.)

Attendance at weekly rehearsals is expected, as is practicing the music on your own, as necessary. We recognize that vacations and other summer activities may prevent you from attending. If performers have a conflict with a rehearsal, they should notify the C.A.R. President or the director as far in advance as possible. Repeated absences may result in an individual being pulled from a performance. This decision is at the discretion of the director.

All performers are encouraged to attend all rehearsals even if they are not performing in the next, upcoming performance.

The rehearsal space opens 30 minutes before the beginning of each rehearsal. Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the start of rehearsal. You may need to arrive earlier to allow for any necessary setup and warmup time which you might need. Rehearsals will start promptly.

Rehearsals will be held in the East Fellowship Hall of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church. Changes to the location, if necessary, will be announced as far in advance as possible.

Performance Information (for Performers)

Performers are expected to attend performances. We recognize that vacations and other summer activities may prevent you from attending. If you have a conflict with any of the performance dates, please notify the C.A.R. President and the director as far in advance as possible, preferably at the time of registration. (Use the comments section of the registration form.)

The usual call time for performances is 30 minutes before the beginning of the performance. Earlier call times might be necessary from some performances. All call times are noted in the schedule below.

The list of music planned for upcoming concerts can be found here.

Instrumentation and Equipment

We accept all traditional band instruments. Other instrumentalists may participate at the discretion of the director.

Musicians are generally responsible for providing their own instruments and equipment. Musicians should bring their own portable music stands. The summer band will provide percussion instruments as needed. The band may be able to assist musicians in finding instruments if they do not have instruments of their own; however, the band cannot guarantee that an instrument will be available.


All rehearsals are 6:30-8:00 PM and will be held in the East Fellowship Hall of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, unless otherwise noted.

Tue, 28 May     Rehearsal
Tue, 4 Jun     Rehearsal
Tue, 11 Jun     Rehearsal
Tue, 18 Jun     Rehearsal
Sat, 22 Jun     Concert in the Park
Performance is outdoors at 7:00 - 8:30 PM.
Please arrive by 6:30 PM.
The concert will be in Kolb Park located at the intersection of Elm and Sherman Streets in St. Joseph
The rain date is Sat, 29 Jun, same time.
Tue, 25 Jun     Rehearsal
Tue, 2 Jul     Rehearsal
Thu, 4 Jul     Independence Day Concert
Performance is 7:00 - 8:30 PM.
Please arrive by 7:00 PM.
We will set up on the large concrete pad behind the Homer Village Hall located at:
500 East Second Street
Homer, IL 61849

The rain date is Sat 6 Jul, same time.
Tue, 9 Jul     Rehearsal
Tue, 16 Jul     Rehearsal and Recording
Sun, 21 Jul     Mid-summer Concert
Performance is 5:00 - 6:30 PM.
Please arrive by 4:30 PM.
Weather permitting, this event will be held in the gardens behind the museum.
Otherwise, the event will be held in the meseum.
Tue, 23 Jul     Rehearsal
Tue, 30 Jul     Rehearsal (location TBD)
Tue, 6 Aug     Rehearsal
Sat, 10 Aug     End-of-season Concert
Performance is 5:00 - 6:30 PM.
Call time for chorus is 4:20 PM, band 4:40 PM.
Southside Church of the Nazarene
1629 King St.
Tilton, IL 61833

Concert Selections

Here is the concert order for the Mahomet concert:

  • Star Spangled Banner
  • All Honor to Old Glory
  • Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy
  • Broadway's Best
  • Colonel Bogey
  • Southern Hymn

Break for Chorus

  • Whistler & His Dog
  • Phantom Regiment
  • When Johnny Comes Marching Home
  • America the Beautiful
  • The Thunderer

Below is a listing of music selections which we plan we may perform this season, and online recordings of those pieces when available. The reordings do not always match the arrangements that we are using – for example, the link may be to the orchestral arrangement instead of concert band arrangement, or it may be a different band arrangement than we are using – nor are they necessarily high quality or complete recordings. The intent is to let you hear the style, tempo, and other elements of the piece.

If you find a better quality recording, a recording that more closely matches the arrangement that we are using, or a more complete recording, please let us know.

  • When Johnny Comes Marching Home
    from Civil War Suite, arranged by Harold L. Walters

  • A Trumpeter's Lullaby
    by Leroy Anderson, arranged by Philip J. Lang

  • Colonel Bogey
    by Kenneth J. Alford, edited by Frederic Fennell

  • The Phantom Regiment
    by Leroy Anderson

  • All Honor To Old Glory
    by George Rosenkrans, arranged by Gary Gillett & William Roche

  • The Thunderer
    by John Philip Sousa

  • Domine Fili Unigenite
    from Vivaldi's Gloria, arranged by Larry Daehn

  • The Whistler and his Dog
    by Arthur Pryor

  • Southern Hymn
    by Samuel R. Hazo

  • America
    arranged for concert band by John Cacavas

  • America the Beautiful
    by Samuel Ward, setting for conder band by John Cacavas

  • Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy
    by Don Raye and Hughie Prince, arranged by James D. Ployhar

  • Aladdin
    arranged by Paul Jennings

  • Broadway's Best
    arranged by Johnnie Vinson

Historical Information

The band's very first reheasal was held on Tuesday, 2 June 2009. There were 47 players registered for the first season. The group's first concert was the Homer Independence Day Celebration, originally scheduled for Saturday, 4 July 2009, but moved to Saturday, 11 July 2009, because of whether. The concert was held at 7:00 PM behind the Homer Village Hall. The second concert was planned for the Saint Joseph Community Festival. However, this concert was also cancelled due to whether. There was no raindate for this event. Since this was the only other concert planned in 2009, the band only performed one concert the first year.

The name of the band was decided by the band members during the first season. The band members were polled for ideas. A large set of suggested names were proposed by the members. From these, an initial vote narrowed the field to a set of six names. On Tuesday, 16 June 2009, the final vote was taken. The name "CAR tunes" was selected, being a play on the sponsoring organization's name, Community Arts Resource, C.A.R. The band leadership changed the formatting of the name to "carTunes", with the same font as the then popular "iTunes".

In the 2012 season, the leadership decided that the name carTunes was confusing and should be changed. Suggestions were taken, and the band voted on June 5, 2012. The vote was close, but the winner was Sounds of the Prairie Community Band.