Freddy Bruder

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This is the last photo Peter Koepf took of "Freddi" during Fasnacht,
~ March 12th, 2003 ~

I would appreciate recent photos and "remembrances" so I can assemble a photo tribute for Freddy here on this site.

Freddy Bruder died in his sleep at his Connecticut home on March 29. He was an original member of the Rädäbäng, the Swiss drum quartet that performed at the 1969 Deep River Muster and launched the international drum corps friendship which flourishes today. He was also a member of the Ancient Mariners and the Swiss Mariners.

Alfons Greider

This is a photo Joe Gillotti took of
Alfons with friends during PASIC this last November
I would appreciate recent photos and "remembrances" so I can add to this photo and the tribute for Alfons here on this site. At present, I only have the photos I took at Freddi's Memorial Service displayed further down this page.

Alfons Grieder passed away Sunday afternoon, April 13, 2003. During PASIC, he was extremely ill with cancer yet he comported himself with great calm and dignity.

Alfons was a great snare drum artist and the person who started the first connections between Swiss and American drummers in earlier days (1950's and 1960's). Joining Dr. Fritz Berger, in the 70ies when he started and came over with the famous Rädäbäng. His last visit some few years ago was with the VKB from Basel at the Deep River Muster.

All of our good connections and our international friendships between Swiss and American Drummers are originally based on the efforts of our friend Alfons.

Alfons is survived by his wife Vreni and daughters Isabel and Evelyn

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A memorial service was held for Freddi on April 12 at 1 pm at The Company building in Ivoryton, Connecticut. According to Peter Koepf: "we also will have a memorial for Freddy, Saturday April 12th " so his life was appropriately celebrated here AND in Switzerland on the same day.

A pot-luck meal was served after the conclusion of the service. Not shown in photo slideshow below are the many, many friends of Freddi assembled in the Museum, down in our Lounge, in the parking area etc. I only took a few photos of Mariners & Friends jamming "out back" while others were inside.

Comment: There are many, many "nice", "pleasant", "friendly", "fun", "whacky", "OK" people in fife and drum, but Freddy Bruder was EVERYTHING GOOD in life. He has some good people waiting for him who have gone on before. About our only consolation is the thought/belief that he is stepping into that bigger & better drum line ~ along with Duke, Roger Clark, Eddy Classey, Bill Pace, Kenny Lemley ... etc.


From Cap Corduan ...

The phone rang, interrupting my thought process about how to phrase this one measure in the music I was writing. Just before I picked up the receiver a memory of Fredy Bruder flashed through my head. I smiled to myself as I answered the phone.

The deep, somber voice on the other end of the phone quickly erased the smile. "Cap, I have some bad news." My first thought…. No, don't tell me I have lost another important person in my life. I could feel my heart getting heavy. "Fredy Bruder passed away early this morning." No longer a heavy heart, it stopped completely! I have never felt that kind of sorrow before. I wasn't prepared for this one in any shape or form.

In shock, I thanked the bearer of bad news and placed the receiver back in its cradle. I am not one to show emotion, but these words of tore me to my soul. Fredy? no. No!… NO!!!

This man, whose love of life was so contagious that it spanned 2 continents and touched many generations. His laughter and sense of humor were unmatched. His ability to cut through the crap and see things for what they were was truly insightful. He was a man who influenced and inspired so many to follow the rhythm that flowed through their veins. He couldn't be gone. Not Fredy!

As the days passed and the phone calls diminished, I had time to reflect on all I had gained from my friend Fredy. I came to realize that his greatest gift to me, and so many others, was his friendship. I found a true friend in every sense of the word.

When I met Fredy in 1969, when I was just a mere 9 years old, I had no idea that this unique man who had just done this amazing Swiss drumming & Stick fighting on the Deep River Muster Field would be such an integral part of my life. He was so wonderful with his encouraging words to this feisty, outspoken 9 year old. Every year after that I made the effort to say hello to "Mr. Bruder". No matter what he was doing he found the time to chat with me.

Years passed and I had the privilege to play in Switzerland with Skip Healy & Jim Clark at The Swiss Colonial Muster in 1992. I was completely out of my element and consumed with nervousness. There, out of the blue was Mr. Bruder. Our conversation made me laugh and made me feel at home. We dropped the "Mr."; from then on he was Fredy. Of course there were the occasional times when I referred to him as "Mr." just to bust his chops.

Over the years our friendship grew. Three trips Basel, Switzerland to celebrate Fasnacht. Oh, so many stories from those trips! Countless meetings at The Company Hall where we talked about everything that came into our minds, as well as the stories of friends near and dear to us. Together we said our good-byes to Kenny Lemley and Denny McGowan at the end of the bar. And of course, there were the numerous times we hung out on the Muster fields. No matter where we were there was laughter, always laughter.

Don't get me wrong; there were serious conversations too. We all know Fredy could be very serious when he wanted to. That straight forward, in your face Fredy, whose life experiences and knowledge of the world around him offered so much to anyone who took the time to listen. I'm sure many of us can think of a "Just do it" lecture from Fredy. He inspired us to be better people, to see outside of the "preverbal" box. To do something wondrous with what life had to offer.

Fredy had something special and to try to figure out just what that was is impossible. He touched so many people in so many different ways and he had many, many friends. Cindy, the true love of his life; outside of drumming of course, said to me, that " Fredy's heart was so big that I don't know how he kept it in his chest." As I thought about what Cindy said I came to understand just how Fredy did it. He shared that Heart and all the feelings that went along with it with his friends.

So now those of us whose hearts are broken because Fredy is no longer here with us should take that piece of his heart that he so willingly gave us and use it to mend ours. As long as we keep Fredy in our hearts then his Spirit will never die and he won't be gone. Each time I hear the breeze in the trees, or a wave lapping onto the shore, or laughter, definitely laughter, I will know that Fredy isn't far.

Photo Collection


Freddy Bruder

Photo of Portrait

Memorabilia on Stage

More Memorabilia

Framed Photo

Memorial Jam Session

Jam Session 02

Jam Session 03

Jam Session 04

Jam Session 05

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Page Created and Maintained by Bob Castillo
Midi file, "Amazing Grace", sequenced by Barry Taylor.