After serious discussions in the Test Piece Selection thread - (see below) http://www.themouthpiece.com/vb/showthread.php?t=16834 It prompted me to post this light-hearted variation on a Monty Python Sketch. As many things in the brass band world are shrouded in secrecy we all have our individual ideas of how things are done, so here's my view into the secret world of our Music Selection Panel. No harm intended, so apologies to anyone who takes offence! The 'Four Yorkshiremen' Sketch Scene: Four well-dressed men sitting together in Huddersfield Town Hall Foyer. "Memories of Mozart" being played in the background by Harry Mortimers ‘Men of Brass’. Michael Palin: Ahh.. Very passable, this, very passable. Graham Chapman: Nothing like a good glass of Chateau de Chassilier wine, ay Gessiah? Terry Gilliam: You're right there Obediah. Eric Idle: Who'd a thought thirty years ago we'd all be sittin' here drinking Chateau de Chassilier wine and choosing the Area Test Pieces? MP: Aye. In them days, we'd a' been glad to have a Test Piece. GC: The best WE could manage was a old transcription of an Orchestral work. TG: But you know, we were happy in those days, playing transcriptions. MP: My old Dad used to say to me, "Thou don’t want new music, a good tune is all that’s needed, sumit to whistle ont’ way home. EI: 'E was right. I was happier then playing th’old tunes, and our band had NOTHIN'. We used to practise in this tiiiny old bandroom, with greaaaaat big holes in the roof. GC: Bandroom? You were lucky to have a BANDROOM! We used to play in a broom cupboard, all twenty-six of us, no Percussion in them days mind. Half the floor was missing; we were all huddled together in one corner for fear of FALLING! TG: Never been a great lover of Percussion, but you were lucky to have a CUPBOARD! We used to have to practice in a corridor! MP: Ohhhh we used to DREAM of playin' in a corridor! Woulda' been a palace to us. We used to practice in an old water tank on a rubbish tip. We got woken up at end of rehearsal by having a load of rotting fish dumped all over us! BANDROOM!? Hmph. EI: Well when I say "Bandroom" it was only a hole in the ground covered by a piece of tarpaulin, but it was a Bandroom to US. GC: We were evicted from our hole in the ground; we had to go and practice in a lake! TG: You were lucky to have a LAKE! There were a sixty of us (including junior band and committee) practising in a small shoebox in the middle of the road. MP: Cardboard box? TG: Aye. MP: You were lucky. We practiced for three months in a brown paper bag in a septic tank. We used to have to be at bandroom at six o'clock in the morning, clean the bag, eat a crust of stale bread, go to work down mill for fourteen hours a day week in-week out. When we got back, our Conductor would thrash us with his baton! GC: Luxury. We used to have to get out of the lake at three o'clock in the morning, clean the lake, eat a handful of hot gravel, sort out music pads, go to work at the mill every day for tuppence a month, come back, and the Conductor would beat us around the head and neck with a broken music stand, if we were LUCKY! TG: Well we had it tough. We used to have to get up out of the shoebox at twelve o'clock at night, and LICK the instruments clean with our tongues. We had half a handful of freezing cold gravel, worked twenty-four hours a day at the mill for fourpence every six years, and when we got back, our Conductor would slice us in two with trombone slide. EI: Right. I had to get up in the morning at ten o'clock at night, half an hour before I went to bed, eat a lump of cold poison, lick instruments and boots clean with my tongue, work twenty-nine hours a day down mill, and pay mill owner for permission to come to work, and when we got back, our Conductor would kill us, and dance about on our graves singing "Hallelujah." MP: But you try and tell the young bands people today that... and they won't believe ya'. We had to make our own entertainment in those days. TG: Entertainments - Vinter - I like that one. MP: Make it 3rd Section Area Test Piece for next year then. All: Aye! __________________ And before anyone asks, I have already considered performing this sketch during the tMP bands performance at Pontins! and the answer is NO!