Kashmere High School is located in a predominantly black neighborhood known as Kashmere Gardens in Houston, Texas. Music teacher Conrad O. Johnson attended an Otis Redding concert in 1967 and was inspired to translate the style of the concert into a program he could sustain at the high school in order to create opportunities for his student musicians. The Kashmere Stage Band was born.

Professor Johnson was noted for revolutionizing the High School band experience by challenging his students to perform, record and tour like professional musicians instead of just rehearsing to march for a halftime show. This unique aspect of the group is how they got the title of a “Stage Band” which was quite unusual for the era. Prof (as he was affectionately known ) felt that if you challenged high school musicians to rise to professional standards that they could and would.