JSU Marching Southerners

Marching Southerners

Mellophone Line


Section Leaders

Leah Hooks


Hometown: Southside, AL
High School: Southside High School
Message to Potential Members: “One of the best times of your life is about to start! Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and make mistakes! Be ready to work hard everyday with the best people and musicians around!”

Brody Lindsey


Hometown: Monroe, GA
High School: George Walton Academy
Message to Potential Members: “Always remember that here at the Marching Southerners, we are one big family! Don’t be afraid to reach out if you have any questions or need any kind of help!”

Tony Benavides


Hometown: Ringgold, GA
High School: Heritage High School
Message to Potential Members: “You are about to make the best memories of your life! It is a lot of hard work, but so rewarding in the end. Enjoy your time and HAVE FUN!”


Additional Links

Dear Prospective Member,

We are excited that you are interested in joining the Marching Southerners Mellophone Line! We want to encourage everyone to be at the summer sectionals. At these sectionals, we will be reviewing all of the audition material, to make sure everyone is as prepared as possible. There will be two parts of the audition process, and both will be around the time of band camp. Everyone’s audition will consist of scores based on: music, marching, and attitude. Having a band of almost 500 members, the most important thing for everyone to have, is a great attitude. Attitude is always a big part of the audition process for the SML beacuse we have learned that the most successful seasons are those surrounded by people who desire to be there. If you want to be on the field changing lives, then we want you here, too!

The mellophone music is normally one part, but we will split that part into a 1st/2nd part, and occasionally an upper lead part. For your audition, you will audition for the part you wish to play (Upper Lead/1st/2nd.) We are lucky enough at JSU to have school-owned mellophones to use for free. Since our horns are already supplied, you will be responsible for buying your own mouthpiece. The standard mouth piece we play on is a Blessing/Hammond/ Tama Mello 6, with Hammond/Tama being recommended, but slightly more expensive, and Blessing being a reliable inexpensive option. If you do not have a mello 6, you will need to get one before band camp. The “6” is in reference to the depth of the cup in your mouthpiece. This is NOT optional. If you have a different mouthpiece that you would like to use instead then please ask a section leader to see what they think about the mouthpiece. NO TRUMPET MOUTHPIECES, AND NO FRENCH HORN MOUTHPIECES WITH ADAPTERS! We have to be very specific about our mouthpieces so that we can keep our great sound and work with our intonation with ease. 

For marching, we will look at everything from posture to feet timing to marching and playing simultaneously. For marching purposes, make sure you have athletic shoes, No Toms, Converse, Dress Shoes, Chacos, or anything of that nature. Everyone needs to make sure that they have athletic clothing as well. NO JEANS!  Always bring your own water!!! You will learn more about all of this, including our technique, during summer sectionals and band camp. This is just a bit of information to better prepare you for the visual aspect of Southerners. If you have any questions, our phone numbers are on the Home page, and we can also be reached by email or Facebook!

Once again, thank you for your interest in our section and the Southerners.  We look forward to meeting you and making great memories together in the Fall!

Your 2024 Mellophone Section Leaders,

Leah Hooks

Brody Lindsey

Antonio Benavides

1) Do we have to audition to make the Mello 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 to find out 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 are virtual and will be due through online submission on August 1st before band camp begins. Music for auditions will be posted around May!

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