Chargersonic Band

The Chargersonic Sound joins the Ram Regiment band.


Juleesa Velez

Chargersonic Band after a performance with the Ram Regiment Band.

The heart of Suncoast has been left in a lurch as band director, Ernest Brown, retired on August 31, 2021. After the news of Brown’s sudden departure, the school is in desperate need of a replacement, as he was in charge of the Chargersonic band, the Chargerettes, and many elective classes. The school had a solution for the band members, but it required a major change.

The Chargersonic Band and the Chargerettes are a big part of Suncoast as they perform at pep rallies, football games, parades, and many competitions. Many students look forward to seeing the band perform and dance at events, because of their musical talent and the energy that they bring to these events.

“We didn’t think Mr. Brown’s retirement was on the table at all. And people already don’t really appreciate or pay attention to the band until it’s time for performances, because of the stigma around the band. So, when the news of Mr. Brown’s retirement came out, everyone started asking questions about what’s going to happen to the band because of the legacy he’s given the school, ” Julia Von Pinho, the assistant section leader of the saxophones said.

The band members were given a chance to keep doing what they love by performing with the Palm Beach Lakes High School marching band after many attempts of trying to find another band director to fill in for Brown just in time for the marching band season.

The School Board Policy 5.60, which was adopted on September 11, 2013, states “District employees are prohibited from recruiting students from other schools for any extracurricular activity which includes interscholastic athletic activity, either directly or indirectly, and may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination for violation of this policy.“

This policy did not permit students from the Chargersonic band to join the Ram Regiment band after the news of Brown’s retirement broke, as they are two different schools. Principal Kathryn Koerner and the administration requested a waiver on September 2, 2021, just two days after Brown’s retirement, on this specific policy as there was currently no prospect of a band director this marching band season.

As of September 21, the Chargersonic band was officially allowed to perform and join the Ram Regiment band at Palm Beach Lakes. The Palm Beach County School Board approved this change. The band students were quite surprised and taken off guard at how quick and helpful the administration was in helping their cause.

“In general, principals don’t seem to care about the arts at all, it seems like a second thought to them. When Mrs. Koerner met with us and told us what she was doing to try to make this happen, I was shocked and surprised. We are all grateful that she helped us do this and that she got it approved officially, so that there are no issues in the future,” Velez said.

With the help of the administration and the School Board, the band was allowed to perform and show off all their hard work with their first performance with the Lakes band at a home game and even performed during the Homecoming Parade.

“The performance was amazing at the homecoming, and I was crying at how we finally have a band again. It’s true that the band is what brings the energy to the pep rallies and it was so exciting to be at the parade and just hear that band coming down the street,” Koerner said.


The logo of Palm Beach Lakes High School in West Palm Beach, Florida. (PBLHS)

The Chargersonic Sound and the Lakes Regiment Band are known rivals and the rivalry goes back decades, because of their different personalities and performance styles. So naturally, it was surprising when the Chargers were officially a part of the Ram Nation, but performing is what the band loves to do and that is all they are doing, but just in a different setting.

“There were definitely a lot of differences between our band and Lakes band. I think our style of teaching things and our style of getting things done or how much time we spend on certain aspects were much different. Overall, band is band and they have the same style as our band. We just have a different approach to things,” Von Pinho said.

Pictured from left to right; Connor Rieth, Mikhai Wilson, Lyric Morrow, Julia Von Pinho, Juleesa Velez, Zachary Spencer, Ashley Josil, Danielle Devose, and Alexander Spencer. (Juleesa Velez)

The Chagersonic Sound and the Ram Regiment Band recently performed at the Florida Blue Florida Classics in Orlando and the Chargersonic Sound is looking forward to more performances with the Ram Regiment band in future events, such as pep rallies, and sporting events.

They hope that next year there will be a band with a band leader from an HBCU that will continue the Suncoast style; but as of right now, they are excited and ready for what this year has to offer.

“It is very important to us to carry on Mr. Brown’s legacy because we could have just put a body and hired anybody, but the band is important to us and the school,” Dawn Gordon, the Assistant Principal said.