Philippine Constabulary Band
and Walter H. Loving
Negro Organized Philippines
Band (Seattle Times, Sept. 16 1909)
Local Man's Suggestions Encouraged African-American to Assemble Tone Masters Now Astounding World
" It was the musical genius of a full-blooded American negro, combined with the wonderful natural talent of the Filipinos, that resulted in the organization of the Philippines Constabulary Band - an organization whose achievements have astounded the world of harmony - which opened a two weeks' engagement at the exposition yesterday.
Capt. E. G. Curry, manager of the collections department of the Seattle branch of the "Sunset" Telephone Company, formerly with the Philippines Constabulary, which saw service in Luzon after the island was occupied by American troops, helped bring the band into existence. It was owing largely to his kindly suggestion and ready sympathy that the organizer and present head of the band was encouraged to undertake the work that has resulted in one of the foremost musical organizations of the world. Just how great a name the band has made for itself in the realm of tone is indicated by the fact that at the St. Louis Exposition the band took second prize in competition with the great bands of the world entered in the international contest. It was this band that also led the great inaugural parade incident to Taft's inauguration at Washington last spring, and this same band will again greet the chief magistrate of the nation with sounding brass and cymbal when he comes to the exposition in October. The organization proudly calls itself "Taft's Band" because it sprang into being while he was the ship of state's first mate in the Philippines in 1901.
Capt. Walter H. Loving, an Afro-American and a graduate of the Boston Conservatory of Music, first conceived the idea of a Filipino band. Following his honorable discharge as chief musician of the Forty-eighth United States Volunteers, he suggested the organization of a band to be made up of the native constabulary, whose general aptitude for music had been a revelation to him. This wonderful natural bent had enabled them, without any technical training, to master difficult Classical music.... As no means of organizing the band (military structure - ed.) was then available, Loving was appointed fourth class inspector and was assigned to special duty as clerk at the Constabulary headquarters. Here he came in contact with Capt. Curry who encouraged Loving to effect an unofficial organization of the band".