4 weeks and 4 days to go

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Dave Payn, Sep 20, 2004.

  1. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    .... before I depart London and the south for a new life with my other half on the Isle of Arran. Now that we have this marvellous forum in full swing, I'd like to take this opportunity to say goodbye and 'thanks for having me' to a number of brass bands who I've been involved with over the years, in case I don't see you before I go. This may seem a bit previous, but I'd only forget otherwise, what with me having a memory like a........ like....... um....... like a...... er......... what's that phrase? ;-)

    In what I believe to be chronological order

    Crystal Palace Band. My very first brass band, which I joined in 1979 and stayed with for 20 years, being invited to conduct them for one of those years. With the finest musician (Mike Gray) I have ever met at their helm (and believe me, I've met some fine musicians in my time!) as he has been since 1987, their future is assured. Legendary foreign trips, frequent contest and concert successes and tip top organisation, I can't thank them enough for giving me the brass band 'buzz' to start off with.

    Fulham Brass Band. I conducted this band for 6 years through some tricky times, numbers wise, but it's great to see it flourishing and even qualifying for the National finals, something it had never done before. I left, came back, then left.... but such is the amazing friendship of this band, no matter which personnel come and go, the pull of the 'magnet' was too hard to resist. So I came back again! Under its present MD Paul McLaughlin, the band's fortunes have risen rapidly, from just missing out on the finals in his first year to achieving it the year after. The off-shoot group (The Brass Ramblers) have raised in excess of £20,000 for Cancer Research UK over the years and.... well.... there ain't nothing like 'em!

    Epsom and Ewell Band
    My first full band conducting experience outside Crystal Palace Band. (Fulham at the time were very short of numbers!) A fine and friendly bunch who put up with me though with hindsight, my lack of experience showed and I wasn't quite ready for them at the time. It didn't last long but I thank them for their patience and I'd like to think the experience benefited me in the long run and they even had the decency to ask me to dep for them conducting for two jobs after I left.

    Croydon Brass Band
    In the days when tMP member MRSH was at the helm, he reguarly asked me to dep for him and the band over a period of many years and in his last years there, asking me to day tranfer on sop in local contests despite the fact even to this day, I say I'll never be a sop player as long as I have a hole in my (ahem!) Thank you MRSH and Mrs MRSH (Aardvark) for giving me all that extra banding experience, both as player and conductor, and thank you to the band in general for having me as a temporary MD recently.

    Becontree Brass Band
    Due to a contact at the WMA Summer School, of which I'm the brass band tutor, I was asked to take a rehearsal for this band a few years back, which subsequently led to me being asked to take the band for a SCABA contest in Folkestone, where the band won a couple of prizes and I got my first and only conductors' prize! They were national 3rd section at the time. I said then to their bass trombonist-until-recently that I felt they had the talent to get to the 1st section. He didn't believe me then, but that's where they are now! A fabulous band of characters and again, thank you for giving me the opportunity to learn and further my conducting experience.

    Waltham Forest Co-Op/East London Brass
    Waltham Forest Co-Op as was, they changed their name to East London brass a few years back. Whatever their name is/was, another band who furthered my playing and conducting experience. From the days when Sue Murrill was everything from conductor, secretary and general organiser (which she did so well, you would have thought there was a highly trained committee of people doing it!), she was the band's conductor for 17 years and I felt humble and deeply honoured to be asked to conduct the special CD the band (with friends from Epping Forest amongst others - another band I'd like to say 'thank you' to!) secretly put together to give to her after she left for distant climes after 17 years' wonderful service. The band happily continues to flourish under its present director Steve Earley and I have no doubt they will continue to do so.

    Yiewsley and West Drayton Band
    Though I've known of this band for some years now, this was probably the first band I got some more playing and conducting experience from through tMP! Another band on the up and up with an excellent MD in Christopher Cole and great to have the opportunity to meet fellow tMP-ers WhatSharp? HBB and David Walton as well as bumping into old friends such as Clayton MacLean, Ian Carter and Sharon and John Ide, they very quickly made me welcome and even put up with my rather trumpety cornet tone! Another band who's future is doubtless secure with the players and MD they have. I genuinely fancy them to win the 2nd section areas on Variations for Brass Band. I honestly think they have the band to do it!

    Sandhurst Silver Band
    The most recent 'new' banding experience, having been asked to guest for them at a recent SCABA Entertainment contest, another band enjoying a very good run of contest results both at local and national level, and their playing reflects the confidence that a series of good results can bring. Roger Burke is the man at the helm and his deep understanding of music and the reperoire is a vital element in the band's continuing success.

    Friary Guildford Band
    I thank them, but boy, I still think they're mad! Through a colleague in the days when both of us played with Crystal Palace Band, I finally got, this summer, the opportunity not only for my first experience with a championship section band but thrown in the deep end on sop! (Why, I'll never know!) Yet again, a band whose stock has risen and risen over the years and again, their playing, on a bandstand job in Guildford when I depped for them showed the confidence and musicianship a successful ensemble can bring. Through this I had the pleasure of meeting another tMP-er in Accidental!

    I have other thank yous to make before I go, but these are the bands that have given me my opportunities in a performing capacity over the years and whom I'm going to miss when I go! Thank you all and apologies if I've left any bands out.
  2. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    On behalf of Yiewsley and West Drayton band I'd like to say a big thanks to Dave for all the help he has given us this year (and a very busy year it has been). You'll be a huge loss to the London banding scene and your enthusiasm and readiness to help out anyone anytime is an example to us all.

    Sorry to see you go, and anytime your in the area on a wednesday or friday night pop in and have a blow and a pint or two, you'll always be welcome.

    many thanks Dave!
  3. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Thank you Steve. I'll be along this Friday if you're rehearsing the Folkestone piece! ;-)
  4. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    On behalf of the rest of the banding fraternity I'd like to say you're a complete London Band Tart aren't you Dave?!? ;)

    Seriously, best of luck in Scotland Dave...and for goodness sake don't bend over up there, they'll think you've got your face stuck in your sporran with that beard!!! ;)
  5. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    This post brought a huge smile to my face! Thank you 2md. London Band Tart??? Less of the the 'London Band' bit, please.... ;-)

    Beard is been severely 'Flymo'ed recently so the sporran is safe.... for now! ;-)
  6. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    my pleasure my friend.
  7. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    Oh you'll need the beard to keep you warm in the winter, Dave! We have a different climate up here from the soft warm weather in London. ;)

    But seriously, I hope you enjoy Arran - I've never been there but Scotland is a wonderful place to live and I'm sure you will be deliriously happy. :-D

    PS I heard you were coming to Scotland so I'm leaving in December... couldn't organise it for before you got here though - eeek! ;)
  8. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Thank you fg! I know the climate in Arran as I've visited there many times already! :) (Very stormy at the moment, from what I've heard!) Don't worry, if the beard doesn't keep my chin warm, I'll help myself to one of the many sheep on the isle and stick it to my chin. It'll also keep my chest warm as well so double strength protection! Problem solved! ;-)
  9. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    we hear you gave the sheep catching velcro gloves already Dave! ;)
  10. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    Good luck up there Dave! Looking at that list, I'm not only surprised I've never met you, but also that I've never played in a band with you!! Anyway, I hope you enjoy it up there in the cold with all those sheep... err, let me rephrase that.... have a good time, and make sure you're back for the concert in Hadleigh!!
  11. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    See you then then. :-D
  12. Spanky Rear

    Spanky Rear Member

    4 weeks and 4 days

    I have played in 4 Bands you have conducted Dave. You are in the very top few of the nearly 50 conductors I can recall [or care to]. This aspect of your participation in London Banding will be sorely missed,and I hope you will have as much opportunity as possible in Scotland to further your conducting career.
    Your skills with people in music-making have been an example of how to produce improving standards without lessening enjoyment.
    May you enjoy your new life in Scotland as much as we in London have appreciated having you with us.
  13. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    there will be a fair few Londoners gonna miss you when you go dave, and a site more worried sheep when you arrive...allegedly ;) .

    Best of luck.
  14. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Thank you Lynchie, thank you Spanky! :) :)
    2MD. No use trying to pull the wool over my eyes. Needs to be a lot lower down...... :)
  15. nickjones

    nickjones Active Member

    well you not leaving us for Good Dave ( thank gawd)....not many People who agree with using French Horns in Bands...good luck with the move..
  16. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Thank you, Nick! Next..... Eb trumpets as standard! :) ;-)
  17. nickjones

    nickjones Active Member

    Amen to that Brother.....
  18. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    Do Courtois make Tenor Horns:?: :lol:
  19. NY Bassbone

    NY Bassbone New Member

    For the record....

    Dave, being that bass trombonist, I should point out that it wasn't that I didn't believe you, it was just that I did not want to jinx the band by being too confident....you know, superstitions and all that!

    I remember that the band played really well at the contest, the adjudicator's comments were extremely positive, and you won the conductors prize. A great day and a great performance marred only by the fact that 4barsrest had us placed 18th.....I wouldn't have minded so much but there were only 10 bands playing!

    I am happy that the band is really flying at present, but it should be noted that your contribution (which I thought was at Crawley, not Folkestone) assisted the band in building the momentum that it has kept going to this day. I remember that you agreed to assist us, with very little notice, during what was a difficult time for you and so the band (and I in particular) thank you very much for that great day.

    As for Aran, I wish you all the best up there. At least you will have less trouble finding a new band than I am having here!

    Good luck

    Mike D.
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2004
  20. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Hi Mike! I didn't know 4br was around in those days! Thanks for your kind words. It was a great day out that day! (I still remember, however, not giving you enough time to turn over in Narnia Suite.... ;-)

    I'm sure you'll find a band soon! (There must be plenty of wind bands there?) Arran have a brass band but rarely compete. Whilst I'm not anti contesting (I wasn't at Crawley that day!) it won't be a massive loss. I'll have lots of time to practice so no more excuses..... :)

    Hope you're enjoying NY!



    Firstly, you're right, it WAS Crawley!

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