On drum roll for 60 years

THIS year, Phil Mead, Drum Major for Yagoona District Band, clocked up his 60th consecutive Anzac Day march in Sydney. And at 71 years of age, Phil is showing no sign of slowing down or letting up.

“My first Anzac Day march was in 1959 at the age of 11 as a drummer for the then St George-Sutherland Shire Brass Band,” Phil said.
“For 33 years, I marched with Sutherland Shire before moving bands to Yagoona District Band in 1992.”
Sutherland’s loss was definitely Yagoona’s gain; under his guidance, Yagoona always look well turned out on Anzac Day.
For Phil, family is a very important part of the Anzac tradition.
His father Victor was a WWII veteran in the 2nd/6th Armoured Regiment who would always march, then Phil was joined by his brother Ron, Phil’s three sons, David, Steven and Jeffrey and now in recent years, father, brother and sons have been joined by grandchildren Keiley, Ryan and Connor – all in the red tunics of the Yagoona District Band and wearing their Great Grandfather Victor’s medals when they march – honouring Phil’s father and the Anzac spirit.
As Drum Majors go, Yagoona band firmly believe that they have one of the very best in the business, with one member saying: “On parade, Phil has an easy air of confidence and commanding presence that puts the most nervous of marchers at ease.”
And are there any plans for retirement?
“No I’ll keep going as long as I can; we rehearse weekly and perform at a lot of functions,” he said.
“You meet a lot of people, it’s great socialising and educational for the newer members plus it keeps your brain young, at least that’s what I’m hoping.”
For more info about joining Yagoona District Band, email