Dr. White built the bands foundation with a simple motto:
“Strive for artistic excellence in marching, playing, scholarship and character”
With lyrical help from the French classes of 1965 Dr. White arranged the schools Alma Mater and the fight song “Pride of Raines”. The year of 1965 saw the band participating in the district competition and receiving its first superior ratings. As early as 1970 the band program had 250 students enrolled in band classes and the marching band marched 170 members. White was assisted by Mr. Kenneth Tolbert and Ms. G. Styles who instructed the majorettes. Later Mr. Freddie McClain Jr. served as the director’s assistant and Ms. Evelyn Hopkins became the majorette instructor. In 1971 Dr. Milton Threadcraft created the Vikette squad and served as its coordinator. The flag squad was also added during this period. During this time there was a marching, concert and symphonic band, jazz band and there was even an orchestra which was lead by Mr. Henderson until 1986.
During Dr. White’s tenure the band program performed at numerous prestigious events all over the country including the 1973 Mexican Invitational Band Festival in Mexico City, Mexico.
In June of 1973 Dr. White resigned as director and accepted an Associate Director position at
Following Dr. White, Samuel McCreary took the bands leadership as director from 1973-1977. It was during this period in 1975 that Mrs. Gail W. Holley began her tenure as auxiliary coordinator, eventually earning the title of assistant band director. Mrs. Holley instructed the Majorettes, Vikettes and Flags. The band program continued to set the standard when in 1976 they were the only
McCreary left Raines in 1977 and went on to teach music at
In 1977 Mr. Marcus A. Young “Butta Butta” as he is affectionately called by all of his students, became the band director. Mr. Young was known for his strict discipline and focus on quality musicianship. He nicknamed the band “the marching 100”.
Mr. Daryl Wilson became band director in 1983. Mr. Wilson carried the distinct title of being the first and only former Raines Band member to become band director at Raines. He served the band from 1983-1986 he went on to create a stellar music program at Martin Luther King Elementary in
In 1986 Mr. Ernest E. White, brother to Dr. Julian E. White was appointed band director. Mr. White had the longest tenure of any director in Raines Band History serving from 1986 until his retirement in 1999 after over 33 years as an educator in the
Following Mr. White’s retirement in the summer of 1999 the Viking band was led by Mr. Claude Graham, Mr. Reginald Mitchell and later Mr. Kenneth Solomon.
In 1999 the band performed for the Vice-President of the United States, Al Gore and in 2000 acclaimed entertainer and philanthropist Mrs. Cicely Tyson.
In 2003 Mrs. Gail Holley retired after 38 years as an educator, spending 29 of those years at Raines serving as the bands assistant director. In 2004 the Marching Vikings was the only marching band chosen to be a member of the 2005 Super Bowl Host Committee. The Band also served as the featured entertainment at the 1st Annual "Snooper Bowl" where they performed with national recording artist and host Snoop Dogg.
Today the Viking band is lead by Mr. KuRonde'
The band received the 2nd place award at the 2011 Battle of the Bands hosted by South Carolina State University. They also participated in the 2011 "Drummers Dream" Percussion Invitational hosted by Mainland High School in Daytona Beach, Florida. In July of 2011 the Viking Band was featured in the "Bone" Music Video for national recording artist Swat De'Raw. Later in November of 2011 the Viking Band performed with national recording artist Diggy Simmons.
With the support of our principal Ms. Shateena Brown, we look forward to Mr.