Minnesota Brass Inc.
Cecil Kyle American Legion Corps, 1946-47 A few Minneapolis World War II vets, many of whom played musica instruments in the armed forces, created the corps and were its first members. The group first performed in 1947.
Laidlaw Drum & Bugle Corps, 1948-1955 Members moved the corps to the Laidlaw American Legion Post in Minneapolis.
Laidlaw Toreadors, 1956-1964 In the 1960s the corps decided to focus on a Spanish musical style and visual theme. This corps won many state and regional Legion championships.
Grain Belt Diamonds, 1965 For one season, the Minneapolis' Grain Belt Brewery sponsored the corps. The 'diamond-clear, smoother beer' had a diamond-shaped logo. The Diamonds were dressed in tuxedos, and used diamonds in their drill. That look died after one season, because audiences said they looked like funeral directors.
Men of Laidlaw, 1966-68 When Grain Belt dropped their sponsorship, the corps went back to its Minneapolis Legion home. The corps blue windbreakers that they continued towear through 1975.
Brass Inc., 1969-1979 The corps modernized its musical style and image after the 1968 season. They still hadn't decided on a name before their fist performance in 1969. Corps Directors Corky Whitlock and Terry Bremer decided on "Twin Cities' Amalgamated Brassworks, Inc." on a whim. They shortened the name after they heard an announcer say "Take it away, Brass." In 1969, they began allowing women into the corps, and many alumni from other local corps joined. With Brass Inc. came the theme of jazz-oriented entertainment.
Minnesota Brass Inc. (MBI), 1980-present "Minnesota" was added to the name in 1980 in answer to the question "Where are you from?!" "Minnesota" was chosen instead of "Twin Cities," because the members of the corps were no longer only from the cities. The name came in handy as the corps began competing for the senior world championship. As the musical repertoires became theme-oriented in the early '90s, MBI earned membership in the top ranks of senior drum corps.
Some of our proudest accomplishments have been sending lots of young members off to top-ranked Drum Corps International (DCI) junior corps. Some of the junior corps our people have graced: Bluecoats, Blue Devils, Blue Stars, Boston Crusaders, Colts, Madison Scouts, Phantom Regiment, Santa Clara Vanguard, 27th Lancers, and Velvet Knights. We actively encourage young members to go experience junior corps. Many get their start in MBI, play a year or two in a great junior corps, and then come back to MBI, their "home corps."
The Corps song is titled "For all we Know," by Sam M. Lewis and J. Fred Coots. The Lyrics are as follows:
For All We Know, we may never meet again. Before you go, make this moment sweet again. We won’t say “Good Night” until the last minute. I'll hold out my hand, and my heart will be in it.
For All We Know, this may only be a dream. We come and go like the ripples on a stream, So love me tonight -- tomorrow was made for some -- Tomorrow may never come, For All We Know.
Past names of the corps:
- Cecil Kyle American Legion Corps, 1946-47
- Laidlaw Drum & Bugle Corps, 1948-1955
- Laidlaw Toreadors, 1956-1964
- Grain Belt Diamonds, 1965
- Men of Laidlaw, 1966-68
- Brass Inc., 1969-1979