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Hello, and welcome to I’m Jari Villanueva. This site is about the bugle call Taps, bugles, and the history of military bugling in the United States.

For 23 years I was honored to be a member of The United States Air Force Band in Washington, DC. My duties included performing Military Funeral Honors for our departed service men and women at Arlington National Cemetery. At Arlington I sounded Taps thousands of times, led the Air Force Band in hundreds of ceremonies as a drum major, and also provided honored service as an Arlington Ladies escort, assisting Air Force Chaplains at many services.

Since retiring, I am honored to still serve our veterans as Director of Veterans Affairs for the Maryland National Guard, where my primary duty is providing for Military Funeral Honors for veterans in Maryland.

I started my research on Taps and bugling around 1990 after I was asked where the call Taps had originated. I could not come up with an answer and I realized that despite the fact I was a bugler in a premiere military band and had played bugle calls all my life, I really did not know the history of this famous call.

So I began 20 years of research that has taken me to this website, my book on the History of Taps – 24 Notes That Tap Deep Emotions, interviews for the History Channel and many other TV and radio programs as well as newspapers and print publications, and finally a Taps exhibit at Arlington National Cemetery that featured the bugle used at the funeral of President John F. Kennedy. The exhibit is gone now but you can still visit the bugle in the Visitor Center at Arlington.

I am also the president of the non-profit organization TAPS150. Taps has, for almost 150 years, held a special place in our American heritage. Originally conceived as a replacement signal to order “lights out” at the end of the day in the military, the call has transformed into the funeral honors accorded all uniformed personnel who have faithfully served our country. While still sounded every evening at military bases to signal “Day is Done,” the notes of Taps have become part of our national conscience. In times of peace and war the 24 notes of this familiar melody have been performed each day in virtually every part of our nation. As we approach the 150th anniversary of this famous call, TAPS 150 has been incorporated to commemorate the anniversary of this national treasure. TAPS 150 is planning commemorative events, special concerts and programs that will culminate with ceremonies at National Cemeteries in May 2012 and a re-enactment event in June 2012 at the Berkeley Plantation in Virginia where Taps was born. I encourage you to visit the TAPS150 website at, and see how you can help with the plans to make Taps our National Song of Remembrance.

Here on Tapsbugler, you will see a new look and feel to our website. The site now has a “blog” style look to it and most of the information is in the form of posts. Many of these posts have page numbers to indicate that the article continues onto the next page – that way you never have long posts that seem to scroll down forever. As you read the posts you will encounter links that will allow you to download information and articles on Taps and bugling. There are also many bugle manuals that you can download.

On the left side of your screen you’ll see the “What’s New” box that we will update with information as new posts are added. Underneath you’ll see our Quick Links. Here is where you’ll find some of the most visited posts on Tapsbugler. From the History of Taps to protocols for sounding Taps at funerals, you’ll find it here. And very importantly, how to find a live bugler for a funeral or other ceremony. You will also see information on connecting with me on Facebook and Twitter, plus links to some Taps-related Facebook pages.

On the right side of your screen you’ll find our new Search tool. This can be used for finding a specific post or reference on Tapsbugler. Just put in a key word and related articles will pop up.  Also on the right side is our Donation Button. This website is the result of a labor of love, but there are costs involved with web hosting and the costs in researching and posting this material. Please help us continue this website by making a contribution. You can also contribute by submitting articles for us to post here on

I encourage you to bookmark this site and return periodically to check out new material.  New posts will be added on a regular basis. And if you have bugle stories or photos you wish to share, please contact us and we’ll post them here on Tapsbugler.

Once again, thanks very much for stopping by and I hope you enjoy your visit.

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