One of Hall County’s own has been inducted into the Phi Beta Mu Georgia Bandmasters Hall of Fame.
Ron Evans, who started his career with a fledgling South Hall marching band in 1963, said he was thrilled to learn of the designation.
"It’s probably the greatest honor I’ve ever had," Evans said. "It’s an absolute honor to be chosen by these band directors and musicians I have looked up to for years."
The Phi Beta Mu Bandmasters Hall of Fame is an international honor fraternity for band directors. Evans was inducted to the Georgia chapter, formed in 1980.
"About 21 former band directors over the year have been inducted since 1980," Evans said.
Evans said his love of music started when he saw "The Glenn Miller Story" and knew he had to play the trombone.
"I’ve been playing all my life almost," Evans said.
Evans helped develop the band at South Hall High School, now Johnson High.
"We developed that program into a band of about 220 by the time it got over to Johnson High School," Evans said.
He led the band at Johnson High School until 1986, then spent six years at Gainesville High School and finished his high school band career at Shiloh High School in Gwinnett County in 1997.
In 1984, Evans organized the North Georgia Wind Symphony, a group of adult musicians.
In 1997, the group changed its name to the Northwinds Symphonic Band, under which it still performs today.
There are about 85 members in the band, some of whom are in their 70s. "I still conduct the Northwinds Symphonic Band," Evans said. "It’s something I do just for the love of it."
Evans’ wife, Karyn, plays the flute in the Northwinds Symphonic Band. They have two children who also grew up with a love of music.
One daughter plays the French horn and the other has a master’s degree in opera performance.