By Mark Traphagen on April 13, 2011
Back in October I became one of the founding members of Durham’s newest community band, The Bulltown Strutters. Patterned after the famous “second line” bands of New Orleans, but drawing inspiration from street band traditions around the world, we have been playing and strutting to Dixieland, old time standards, spirituals, and even Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” at various community parades and events in and around Durham, NC, including a regular second Tuesday of every month Dixieland jam at Papa Mojo’s Roadhouse in south Durham.
But the absolute highlight in the life of our band so far would have to be the recent Marry Durham ceremony. Starting from a casual conversation where one Durhamite proclaimed that she loved Durham so much she could marry it, Marry Durham grew into an enthusiastic community-generated festival where over 2000 Durham citizens took vows to support and care for their beloved city. But like any wedding, it was also a time for fun and festivities. As soon as the wedding ceremony was over, the Bulltown Strutters led a recessional parade around the block. Later in the afternoon we performed in the Motorco garage, but not before causing a street party within a party to break out on Rigsby Avenue.
Today professional videographer Rodrigo Dorfman released a beautifully-edited mini-documentary that perfectly captures the spirit of that day, and the community spirit that is the Bulltown Strutters.