JSU Marching Southerners

Marching Southerners

20J Line


The Jacksonville State University Marching Southerners pride themselves in producing a one of a kind bass sound no other collegiate marching band has yet to rival. The Southerners 20J Line can attribute their truly unique bass sound to remarkable players and the world-renowned C.G. Conn 20J Upright Recording Bass.   

Section Leaders

Aaron Hill

Head Section Leader

Hometown: Jacksonville, FL

High School: Sandalwood High School

Advice to incoming freshmen: “As you embark on a new journey in the Southerners, prepare to gain a new family. Embrace this opportunity and cherish it. Step out of your comfort zone, be approachable, show humility, and aim to make a positive first impression. Remember, you never have a second chance to make a first impression.”

Sam Stellberg

Assistant Section Leader

Hometown: Dawsonville, GA

High School: North Forsyth High School

Advice to incoming freshmen: “One of the most important things you learn as this new adventure unfolds, is you should not be afraid to be yourself. Don’t change who you are to try and be something you’re not. The famous John Haywood once said, “Rome wasn’t built in a day, but they were laying bricks every hour.” This is a reminder to us that we have big goals, but they cannot be achieved right away. Make small goals along the way to HELP you reach that ultimate goal. And finally don’t be afraid to reach out to me or Aaron Hill if you have any questions!”

(Click on movement titles to open music)

Additional Links

1) Do we have to audition to make the 20J line? Yes, you do! The auditions are not meant to be stressful. They are a combination of marching technique, attitude, and playing ability. The section leaders will keep you informed about the music for auditions as we get closer to band camp. 
Music Audition videos must be submitted by July 1st, and visual auditions will take place during camp! 

2) Do we need to wear anything specific to band camp? No, you don’t! We recommend wearing light-weight clothes that you would exercise in. The only requirement is that you wear tennis shoes. Also, bring plenty of water!

3) Where do we meet for events such as Scholarship Auditions, Brass Day, J-Day Game, and Band Camp? Contact your section leaders for the exact location. We attached a map of the campus that will hopefully make finding Mason Hall easier. http://www.jsu.edu/campusmap/?Mason_Hall_

4) Do you need to sign up for a specific class to be a part of the Marching Southerners? Yes! At orientation, you will need to sign up for either MU192 (underclassmen) or 392 (upperclassmen). Once you do this, you will officially be enrolled in the Southerners. You MUST be signed up for the class to march. 

5) Do we need sign up for band camp? Yes! You will sign up by clicking on the BAND CAMP REGISTRATION tab under “Events/Band Camp”. 

6) When are concert band auditions? Auditions for the fall semester happen after band camp and before school. There will be sign up sheets for these auditions about a week before they happen. Music for auditions will be posted around May!



Auditions for the Marching Southerners 20J line are held during band camp. The auditions will consist of a musical portion, testing your musical ability on the 20J, and a marching portion, testing your ability to march with the 20J. The musical selections for tryouts will be selected by the leadership team during band camp, and the marching portion will be a series of basic marching commands facilitated by the section leaders. ​Also, attitude and work ethic are highly evaluated during this process and will not be neglected when considering your spot on the line. Need more info on auditions? Check out the Audition page.

What You Need

​The JSU Band Department has a collection of Conn 20Js that are used for marching. Every member will check out a horn, consisting of a body and a bell. If you need to check out a 20J during the summer, please contact the Band Office at 256-782-5562 to set up an appointment with a graduate assistant. 
The type of mouthpiece you use is up to you. We recommend either a Perantucci or Helleberg mouth piece. We do not allow Bach 18-24AW’s. If this is the mouthpiece you use, we suggest upgrading. Try to avoid using a mouthpiece used for your concert horn, if you have one. Mouthpieces will go through a lot of wear and tear during the season.
In order to hold a Conn 20J, we use old-style snare straps and a carabiner. Straps will be provided by the section leaders for you to purchase during band camp. We do not usually supply carabiners, yet they can be found very easily for very cheap. If you want to purchase your own strap before band camp, check your local music store. If near the Jacksonville area, we suggest Gadsden Music


Be Prepared

Marching 20J is more than just marching a tuba. This horn requires a lot more strength and control to maneuver and play than a sousaphone. It might take a while for rookies to get used to the horn. Make sure you are in decent shape to endure marching the horn in the crazy Alabama weather. This horn is no joke.
It takes a specific type of individual to be committed to the enigma that is tuba, and it’s more than just the horn that makes us stand out as a section. Through years of embracing the odd, and a duty and loyalty to excelling our standards, the 20Js of Jax State have created a tradition of getting business done on and off the field. The 20Js are known across the nation. No matter what age or year you march, you are expected to claim the upmost responsibility and dedication to not just the section, but also the Marching Southerners. Actively listen. Thrive off discipline. Be kind. And never be afraid to be yourself. We always look forward to meeting new personalities and flavors to contribute to the section. After all, that’s what makes us uniqueBLOW 20J.
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