They both enjoy it and, over the years, have had great success at it, winning competitions up and down the East Coast. A long row of file cabinets in the Wilde Lake band room is lined with scores of trophies won by the school's bands over the years.

"The last five trips we've taken, we've been the grand champion," Dutrow said of his jazz ensemble's competitions. "But I've never been about that," he added. "The music is what comes first."

Peabody's Parker praised Dutrow for his ability to put together sweet-sounding ensembles year after year from constantly changing parts.

"What sets Lew apart is, no matter who he has in his group, he's such a great teacher that the group always sounds incredible," Parker said. "I think part of it is, both he and Barry are both great teachers and very good musicians."


Sign up to receive our free daily email newsletter: Columbia Today

Dutrow seldom picks up his trumpet anymore, confining his playing to sessions with his 11-year-old daughter, who plays the violin and clarinet. And that's fine by him.

"I've decided I wanted to use my time and my musical energies working with the kids, to making them the best they can be," he said. "Teaching kids to love music, teaching kids to play well, teaching them to have a great musical experience … that's what I love to do."

Aaron Robertson, a Wilde Lake senior who has been in the jazz band for three years and this year is band president, said practices "are always a very fun part of the day. Everybody's so excited about the music.

"And Mr. D. is just amazing. He really helps you achieve your best, even if you're having a bad day. He's very encouraging — always has a very enthusiastic demeanor to him."

Three years ago, Dutrow hosted a concert celebrating his 30 years at Wilde Lake. Some 40 of his former students showed up to surprise and honor their former mentor.

It was a touching moment for Dutrow. "It was really, really something," he recalled, smiling at the memory. "That's why we do this."

Barry Enzman

After he graduated from Lebanon Valley College in Pennsylvania some four decades ago, Barry Enzman spent a year on the road as a professional musician. It was a gig in Hagerstown that launched him on the road he was perhaps destined to take.

The then-supervisor of music education for Howard County happened to be at the Hagerstown show, and during the break he and Enzman talked. When he learned Enzman had a degree in music education, the supervisor told Enzman about a job opening in Howard. Enzman applied, was hired, and with that, one of the state's most consistently accomplished band programs was born.

"When I got here, the program was not in good shape at all,"  Enzman said.

He spent five years rebuilding it, he said, then realized he was not the type of teacher to look for other struggling programs to rebuild. Instead, he wanted to stick around Glenelg and maintain what he had.

Maintain it he has.

Every year, high school bands in Howard are assessed by a panel of experts, and every year for the past 37 Enzman's symphony band has earned the highest ratings possible, according to county music chief White.

"It's a state record," White said. "No other band has done that."

"It's been a great ride," Enzman said. "I've gotten to experience a lot."

Among those experiences, he said, are taking bands to competitions from Florida to Canada, as well as to such prestigious overseas jazz festivals as the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland