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Harry Brabec playing with the big bands

Drumming with the big bands in the forties

Harry Brabec performing with the
Chicago Smphony Orchestra, 1965.

Performing with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in the sixties

Married August 26, 1961

Harry Brabec with his handmade cane
made of PVC pipe and decorated like a peppermint stick for the holidays.

One year Harry decorated his handmade cane (PVC pipe) with red and green tape and people all over town stopped him to comment on his creativity.

Barbara Brabec's memoir about her life
with Harry Brabec, legendary Chicago Symphony percussionist and humorist.

Barbara reads excerpts from the book!

~ Available as MP3 downloads ~

In Memory of Harry Brabec
1927-2005

A special tribute by his widow, Barbara

(See her series of articles for widows here)

The Last of a Dying Breed
Page one of a special tribute to Harry Brabec, an outstanding percussionist and musician who worked with countless entertainers, bands and orchestras during his lifelong musical career, including the National Symphony in Washington, D.C., the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera, the Shubert Theatre (Chicago), the NBC Symphony of Chicago, and, in his earlier years, the jazz bands of Wayne King, Woody Herman, and Chuck Foster.

Moving in New Directions
Harry's work with the Disney World Marching Band, Artisan Crafts Magazine, Silver Dollar City's Fall Festival, the International Crafts Exposition in Williamsburg, Virginia, and the winding down of his musical career.

Moving from This World to the Next
A poignant account of Harry's last days and his very peaceful death (made possible by Hospice), his cremation and very special urn, and the thing that prompted his last smile.

Life as Mrs. Harry Brabec
Harry, the man, and how he captured Barbara's heart and married her only 18 days after they met on a blind date in front of Fourth Presbyterian Church in Chicago.

The Handwriting (and Humor) of Harry Brabec
One of Harry's letters to an old friend that talks about being forced to "lay down his sticks," plus a humorous post card and a cartoon that cracked him up.

Published Articles About Harry
Two articles reprinted from The Intermezzo, trade paper of the Chicago Federation of Musicians

Harry Brabec: Legendary Drummer
Photos of young Harry with his drums and marimba and contest medals during his J. Sterling Morton Grade School/High School years.

Show Drumming: Learning the Trade, Designing Your Setup
This unpublished article by Harry was found amongst his papers. It offers perspective and professional tips for would-be show drummers of today.

Harry Brabec, Bibliophile. Three years after his death, Barbara decided she could no longer keep nearly a thousand books Harry had collected throughout his lifetime, so she began the process of selling them on Amazon. These pages talk about Harry's collection and his love of books. See also a sampling of his collection of CDs now on Amazon.

Barbara's Series of articles for Widows

Barbara's Memory Box of Life With Harry
A photographic look at the life of Barbara and Harry
over a period of nearly 44 years of marriage

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Copyright © by Barbara Brabec 2000-2014