As the son of a band director, Kenny Goodson inherited a love for music from his father. Growing up, countless Saturdays were spent at Tatum’s Music Company in East Texas, listening to his dad talk band with fellow directors. He recalled one particular road trip his father shared his first experience at a drum and bugle corps show — his face beaming with excitement. Intrigued by this style of marching he was unaware of, Kenny attended his first drum corps show in the summer of 1978, then traveled to his first DCI Finals in Birmingham, Alabama the following year. Kenny was already musically inclined — he began piano lessons at just 5 years old and by junior high, he was writing music for the band. Clearly, music was in his DNA but those experiences, specifically with his father, sparked a passion for corps-style marching band that has resulted in a successful, long-lived career.
Kenny discovered his appeal for technology while pursuing a master’s degree in composition. After completing a Computer-Aided Instruction in Music course, he said “the computer bug took hold.” He then purchased one of the first-released machines, the Apple IIe computer, and continued exploring all that these new machines had to offer. Kenny’s dive into the study of music and technology just happened to coincide with the release of Pyware.
Kenny met Pyware Founders, Py and Cayleen Kolb, at a TBA convention in the mid-1980’s, shortly after the launch of the software. The Kolbs introduced him to what was then called, Charting Aid. He spent time learning how to utilize the program and in 1987 was invited to host a Charting Aid clinic in the Pender’s Music booth at the OBA convention.
“One of the first advantages I found in designing with Pyware was increased creativity due to efficiency. Since I no longer had to physically draw every dot on the field, I could spend time experimenting with different ideas, forms, movements, etc.,” Kenny stated.
Kenny became an advocate for the software while using Pyware to design for his own bands. Following his time as band director for Mount Pleasant High School, he accepted the position as assistant band director at Atlanta High School. Two years later, he was promoted and served as the head director, primary arranger, and drill designer for the Atlanta Band. During his 4 years of leadership, the band was a 4-time finalist in the Parade of Champions contest at the Cotton Bowl, was a featured band in the 1991 Independence Bowl, and made appearances at the UIL State Marching Contest.
After 16 years as a Texas band director, Kenny made a career transition to concentrate further on technology and drill design. He shifted from teaching band to educational IT in 1994. Even with this changeover, his passion for the marching arts remained and he did not want to lose connection to the activity. In addition to his teaching career, he began accepting requests from various directors to write their drill. He printed out cards to be distributed at TBA and started laying groundwork for a new business.
The following year, Kenny launched MADD Creations. He is joined by his wife at the company, where they provide first-rate music, arrangements, and drill design to programs of all sizes, throughout the country. Customers continue to rave about Kenny’s ability to deliver original, tailor-made compositions and designs to both perfectly match the needs of the staff and challenge the students. The couple are now closing in on 3 decades of impeccable service, as their client list just continues to grow.
Throughout the duration of MADD Creations, Kenny has used Pyware to write winning drill for his clients.
“As the program has continued to improve and mature, the ability to see the drill from the perspective of the audience (even when it was just triangles) and the ability to sync audio were important features. Then the incorporation of videogame technology to produce Real View is fantastic,” he explained.
Kenny has always shared in Pyware’s mission to improve the marching arts activity and music education through technology. Since the day he walked into the Pyware booth roughly thirty-five years ago, he has supported the software and our team is fortunate to now call him a friend and a member of the original Pyware family!
“I have never found another application that offers the same wealth of features, logical workflow, and ease of use of Pyware. When this is combined with the unbelievable support provided by the Pyware team and Pyware user community, I believe there is no other choice,” Kenny said.
Leave a Reply