Tony Mabrey is well-known as a basketball player and coach. After all, the former Aggie and Jacksonville State star is a member of the Marshall County Sports Hall of Fame.
But he’s also a pretty good musician, it turns out. He revealed it to the student body at Brindlee Mountain High School, where he coaches the girls basketball team, when he recently sat in with the pep band and played the drums during a game. The next night, he played again and Brindlee band director Jerald Bailey, the former Guntersville band director, played trumpet with him.
Mabrey is a self-taught musician. He picked up playing as a boy while listening to his father play.
“My dad played music with Albertville mayor Tracy Honea’s dad,” Mabrey said.
Skeeter Mabrey and Dink Honea were really good musicians.
“Dink Honea was the best guitar player I’ve ever heard,” Mabrey said. “He had people from Nashville come to his house to get tips on how to play.”
Young Tony learned to play not only the drums but also the guitar. And he’s still learning more about music.
“My wife Roseanne got me a harmonica for Christmas,” he said.
He enjoyed playing with the band so much the other day he’s going to sit in with them on some more stuff in the future.
Mabrey said music and athletics are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
“More pro and college athletes than you realize also play music,” he said. “I think it can help your game. What do you say when a team is playing really well? You say they found their rhythm. There’s a certain rhythm up and down the floor or the field.”