Former Marine James Pitts has been repairing horns for the prestigious Tennessee State University marching band for the past 13 years. / Submitted
TSU horn repairman keeps band marching
Mississippi native picked up skill while in Marines
For the past 13 years, James Pitts has been busy making sure the prestigious Tennessee State University marching band doesn’t miss a beat.
A native of Tupelo, Miss., and a Marine Corps veteran, Pitts moved two dozen times throughout his early and young adult life before settling on Tennessee as a place to call home. Now he’s the TSU band’s repairman.
Tell me about all that moving around.
I’m originally from Tupelo, Miss., but I’ve moved around quite a bit. I only lived there two years. My father was in textiles, so I moved to about 12 different places before I finished high school. Then I joined the Marine Corps, where I moved to about another 12 places. I’ve actually been in Tennessee longer than anywhere else in my life. I’ve been here roughly 20 years.